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Teaching Conceptually and Strategies - Research Paper Example

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Provide at least three tips for moving from topically driven model of instruction to conceptually driven model Today’s teaching conceptually is one of the most effective ways of training in modern society. It focuses the instruction on conceptual ideas rather than thoughtless application of procedures (Sowder, 1998)…
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Teaching Conceptually and Strategies
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Provide at least three tips for moving from topically driven model of instruction to conceptually driven model Today’s teaching conceptually is one of the most effective ways of training in modern society. It focuses the instruction on conceptual ideas rather than thoughtless application of procedures (Sowder, 1998). Moving from a topically driven model of instruction to a conceptually driven model is somehow difficult, especially among the inexperienced teachers. However, there are three tips that can really assist in such an undertaking. One of the major strategies is using a brain compatible approach of teaching. According to Olsen and Kovalik (2010), this kind of approach to learning starts with student’s experience, then the concept taught and then the vocabularies and difficult words in the concept. If an instructor adapts this approach, he would be teaching more conceptually, thus, promoting conceptual understanding among his/her students. Another tip that can assist in moving from topically driven model is emphasizing on conceptual content of a lesson rather than the topic content. In this approach, less content is taught on a topic while making sure the concept is well understood among students. The main idea is taught in point forms where emphasis on the individual point enhances understanding. For example when teaching on human growth and development, development stages like childhood, teenage and adulthood will expound the concept. An instructor can also employ teaching materials hat represent the concept being taught. A good example is using animals’ pictures and leaves to teach ecological concepts (Pressley, 2003). This kind of approach is conceptually based as it mainly emphasizes on the conceptual understanding of the ideas being taught. The reason for this is that animals and leaves would represent the concept being taught and would reveal how such a concept could be applied. Provide an example of a time when you adjusted your current teaching approach to move toward teaching more conceptually. I adjusted my teaching approach to become more conceptual when I taught speech writing to 8th grade students. Since I was to teach about speech, I collected several speeches written by different authors and speech articles from magazines. Before introducing the concept of speech writing, I first required the students to read the speeches and discuss the structure and content with their fellow students. I later introduced the concept of speech writing and related it to the different speeches they had read. After that I taught the students what constitutes a good speech and told them to identify which one among the speeches they had read was an illustration of a good speech. Requiring the students to read the speech could have been taken as the way of creating a conceptual experience among the students before introducing the concept. In this case, I related the concept with the experience I had created among students. This assisted me in promoting not only the conceptual understanding among my students but also the understanding of how to apply the concepts to deliver a good speech. My teaching approach in this case was more conceptual than topically based. The main achievement was that I was able to incorporate ideas taught in another topic to make my students understand the topic of speech writing much better. Select and analyze three of the best and three of the worst practices that you found. Explain your reasoning for selecting these practices. One of the best practices that can be adapted in teaching is motivating students to learn (Stone, 2008). In practice, students should be promised rewards if they achieve a certain level of conceptual understanding. Another best practice is differentiating the structure and content of instruction to fit a concept (Stone, 2008). Within this kind of practice, teachers should adjust the way they give instructions to promote conceptual understanding among the students. Using external teaching material in class is another example of excellent practice that would promote learning among the students (Stone, 2007). The teachers would adapt this practice to cheer up their classes and make learning an enjoyable venture. However, a teacher adapting such practices should make sure that they meet the required standards. One of the worst teaching practices is not preparing for a teaching session as a teacher (Ndon, 2010). This practice affects the learners, as well as the teacher involved. It makes the teacher lack a strategic approach to the concepts he is to teach and, hence, affects learning. Another bad practice is paying no attention to individual learner’s needs (Ndon, 2010). This makes it hard to understand the concepts taught in a class; only a small group of students is able to understand what they are being taught. According to Ndon (2010), another bad practice is not using all the media of instructions correctly. This could make students fail to understand the concept in the process of the instruction. Several teachers are victims of these worst practices. Most of them do those unknowingly while others make these mistakes because of ignorance. However, the effects of these worst practices are dramatic and that is why I have decided to identify them in this paper. Determine two of the biggest challenges teachers face when creating concept-process integrated units. Two biggest challenges that teachers face when creating a concept-process integrated unit are as follows: overcoming time and resource constraints. Understanding by students of a concept taught in a unit would require considerable time. It would also require the teacher or instructor to employ other instruction materials apart from the course book. To mobilize all the resources that might be required for creating this kind of unit might prove to be difficult, especially to institutions that have resource constraints. Finding the amount of time that could be required for this kind of unit is also difficult due to many concepts that are required to be taught by the end of a course. References Ndon, U. T. (2010). Hybrid-context instructional model: The internet and classrooms: The way teachers experience it. Charlotte, NC. Age Publishing Inc. Olsen, K. D., & Kovalik, S. J. (2010). Kid’s eye view of science: A conceptual, integrated approach to teaching science, K-6. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications. Pressley, M. (2003). Motivating primary-grade students. New York, NY: Guilford Press. Sowder, J. T. (1998). Middle-grade teachers’ mathematical knowledge and its relationship to instruction: A research monograph. New York, NY: SUNY Press. Stone, R. (2007). Best practice for teaching reading: What award-winning classroom teachers do. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications. Stone, R. (2008). Best practice for teaching writing: What award-winning class teachers do. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications. Read More
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