Archive forJanuary, 2017

Introductory Blog Post

Hello blog audience, my name is Liesl Ziegeweid and I am a Secondary Math Education major at University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. I’m hoping to become a math teacher preferably at a middle school, but other than that I have no opinion on age group or location. I’ve been thinking about what I want to minor in and one possibility is German, so I could potentially also teach a German class. What I hope to achieve in my teaching career goes farther than just teaching kids math. I hope I can help my students gain confidence in their abilities, look forward to coming to school and learning, and hopefully change some lives.

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The most influential teachers that I can remember growing up were the ones that I felt made the class something extra, and didn’t just stand in front of the class writing on the board and lecturing as I struggled to pay attention. I appreciated the ones who put in the effort to make class fun, exciting, and more engaging. I think my bad teachers actually inspired me most of all because I don’t think any student should have to feel like their teacher wants them to fail and that success is simply unobtainable in their class. I will definitely take my experiences from when I was in school and use them to my advantage to better educate my future students and be more empathetic towards them.

What makes a “good” teacher I believe can be answered slightly differently for everyone, as I discovered after our discussion in class about the topic, but most good teachers definitely share some certain characteristics. In my opinion, the qualities that make a good teacher include patience for their students, passion for the subject they’re teaching and their career, and the ability to engage students in the learning and keep them interested and focused. When I think back to my past teachers, the ones I learned the most from and enjoyed the most were the ones who were alive and passionate and made me feel like the subject matter we were learning was important and interesting.

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When comparing the effectivity of different styles of teaching, some are definitely more so than others. For example the teacher from the video clip from the Dead Poet’s Society was high energy, engaging, related the topic to the class, got everyone out of their seats, and overall had the students hanging on his every word. This style of teaching is definitely going to be more effective than the style from the second video clip where the teacher stands in front of the board and speaks in the most monotone voice and makes no effort to make the content more interesting whatsoever. It’s clear by the expression on all the students’ faces that they are hating the class, bored out of their minds, and are not going to retain any of the content they are hearing. I can relate to both these teaching styles as I have had teachers similar to both, and I have experienced first-hand the difference that teaching style can make on learning.

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In the article titled “What Makes a Good Teacher?” from the New York Times, the author discusses the news that New York might tie teacher evaluations with students’ test scores. He questions whether test score should be the basis of deciding which teachers are “good” and which are “bad”. I completely agree that test scores do not necessarily determine the quality of a teacher. ¬†Good teaching is far more complex than making sure students cram information into their heads, regurgitate it onto a test, and then forget it all shortly after. Good teaching ensures learning, growing, expressing creativity, and so much more.

 

Sources Cited:

Gonchar, M. (2015, March 24). What makes a good teacher? The Learning Network. Retrieved from https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/03/24/what-makes-a-good-teacher/?_r=0

Regents, U. B. of. (2017). University of Wisconsin Whitewater. Retrieved January 24, 2017, from http://www.uww.edu/mmr/identity-standards/college-descriptors

Weir, P. (Director). (1989). Dead poets society [Film]. USA.

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