METHODS OF TEACHING
The traditional or innovative methods of teaching are critically examined, evaluated and some modifications in the delivery of know ledge is suggested. As such, the strengths and weaknesses of each teaching methodology are identified and probable modifications that can be included in traditional methods are suggested.
- TRADITIONAL TEACHING METHOD – AN EVALUATION
In the pre-technology education context, the teacher is the sender or the source, the educational material is the information or message, and the student is the receiver of the information. In terms of the delivery medium, the educator can deliver the message via the “chalk-and- talk” method and overhead projector (OHP) transparencies. This directed instruction model has its foundations embedded in the behavioral learning perspective and it is a popular technique, which has been used for decades as an educational strategy in all institutions of learning. Basically, the teacher controls the instructional process, the content is delivered to the entire class and the teacher tends to emphasize factual know ledge. In other words, the teacher delivers the lecture content and the students listen to the lecture. Thus, the learning mode tends to be passive and the learners play little part in their learning process . It has been found in most universities by many teachers and students that the conventional lecture approach in classroom is of limited effectiveness in both teaching and learning. In such a lecture, students assume a purely passive role and their concentration fades off after 15-20 minutes.
Some limitations which may prevail in traditional teaching method are:
- Teaching in classroom using chalk and talk is “one way flow” of information.
- Teachers often continuously talk for an hour without knowing students response and feedback.
- The material presented is only based on lecturer notes and textbooks.
- Teaching and learning are concentrated on “plug and play” method rather than practical aspects.
- The handwriting of the lecturer decides the fate of the subject.
- There is insufficient interaction with students in classroom.
- More emphasis has been given on theory without any practical and real life time situations.
- Learning through memorization but not understanding.
- Marks oriented rather than result oriented.
Methods of Teaching
Teaching is both, art and science. It requires a mastermind creativity that the students of different nature and community should be handled carefully. Therefore, it is an art. On the other hand, it calls for exercise of talent and creativity making it and involving repertoire of techniques, procedures and skills which can be studied systematically, described and improved making it science. The teaching profession has successfully faced many challenges and transformations and adopted recent sophistications and technological innovations suitably. All these developments have helped the teaching community to regain a high status in academic campuses worldwide. The principles of learning and teaching are the tools available to a teacher to teach in a class room or through TV. Successful teaching needs systematic planning and careful execution. Teaching is done in sequential steps. These steps are called the phases. Teaching act follows in three phases.
- Pre-active phase. It is the planning phase.
- Inter-Active Phase. It concerns with the implementation and carrying out what has been planned. Therefore, it is a stage of actual teaching.
- Post-Active Phase. This phase concerns with the evaluation activities which serves as feed-back for improvement.
There are five steps involved in the method of teaching.
The preparation stage is intended for the preparation of both the teacher and the pupil. The teacher must know the level of learning of the children. The lesson may be introduced and the pupils minds will prepare for the new lesson in a variety of ways. The teacher can ask some appropriate questions in the previous lesson in order to connect it with the new lesson. He may discuss some relevant topic in order to bring the new lesson in touch. He can also tell a story to introduce the new topic. There are many ways, thus, which the teacher can utilise for the introduction stage. However the introduction must necessarily be brief and it must create interest in the pupils and stimulate their curiosity.
This is the stage where the actual lesson begins. The teacher has to state the aim of teaching the present class. The students can know what they are going to learn about. The children should get themselves ready before they learn a new thing. The teacher’s statement of aim helps the children for their readiness. Then the teacher presents the lesson. The materials are carefully and skillfully arranged by the teacher. He may tell some reverent facts and deduce some important principles from the lesson. He has to encourage the students to observe, compare and contrast the facts presented to them. During this stage, whenever necessary, the teacher has to write important facts on the blackboard. The difficult words or concepts have to be classified by him. Use of charts, maps, graphs, diagrams, pictures, filmstrips, slides, etc., should be made if available for clear understanding of the facts presented to them. The presentation stage must consist of a great deal of mental activity on the part of the pupils.The presentation rests in the principle of selection of the area to be covered. It is not necessary for a teacher to cover up all areas of the courses of studies. He can leave some areas for pupil’s own learning outside the school hours. A lesson may be presented either multiple sections or in a consolidated section. The teacher should take care of controlling the classroom situation in such a way that the lesson will be successful.
This is the 3rd step of learning. The student is given opportunity to compare two sets of facts. The selected facts are held up before the pupils and they are asked to observe them and compare them with another set of facts. Hence the pupils observe and compare what was given to them with the results obtained after going through a certain process.
By observation and comparison various types of conclusions can be drawn. These are systematized in a particular order to give a generalised truth. For instance, arriving at a formula for finding simple interest, the discovery of a rule in science or framing of a definition in grammar is what is done in the generalisation step of a lesson. Whenever the pupils do wrong or do incomplete generalisations the teachers should help them. The most important thing in this step is that pupils should understand the law or principle that they have discovered.
Knowledge loses half its value unless it can be used in the disco very of further facts and their application to new situations. Application is the step in which generalized truth on knowledge obtained in a lesson is applied to life situations. This makes learning meaningful, real and permanent. This application serves the purpose of revision and recapitulation of the principles just learnt and may take a wide variety of form. The children may be tested orally or may be given some practical work to do, or some constructive and creative exercise in which their originality is needed.