Trainee teacher, Jordan Holdsworth, shares his observations about how teaching is tailored towards specific classrooms needs in the third of his reflection blogs. He writes:
Today’s focus was on the style of teaching employed by different teachers for their classes. One concern I had before starting this placement was the limited ways in which English could be made engaging, as the specification seems very text heavy compared with other subjects. I was allowed to observe a handful of lessons today that had been much more interactive than those I had experienced in the previous days – some of the activity in class inspired me to think broadly about activities beyond reading.
The lesson I found most interesting was a Spanish lesson, led by an NQT. This involved getting students up and out of their chairs taking part in an activity to consolidate their knowledge. All students, even those who appeared to be quite challenging, had completed two thirds of the work by the end. A discussion after the lesson had ended with the teacher inspired me to look online for a range of resources – the teacher told me there are various websites which can provided resources which can be altered for your subject and your ability level and that I should use these resources if I am stumped, or to save time.
Looking at the whole day, it seems that teacher-led activities tend to generate the most engagement with students. Activity does not have to change several times over the course of a lesson, but it must be engaging and allow students to use a range of different skills if it is to be sustainable. Lessons should always be, in some way, interactive; they should encourage students to get involved, in whatever capacity necessary to engage the whole class.