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Teaching and Learning

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Submitted By jdarko
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ESSAY TOPIC: For this project, develop a story of your own learning – and teaching – journey. If you are not currently teaching you may, nonetheless, write about what you will or would do in the future, or indeed what you might have done differently in the past.

This course, “Foundations of Teaching for Learning: Introduction” has had such a great impact on my learning and approach to teaching. I have been amazed at a number of the concepts/ideas that I have been introduced to in this course. Even though I have a background in Mathematics Education from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana, a number of the things dealt with in this course have helped shaped my perspective in teaching and learning. I teach Mathematics in Grade 10 – 12 in a High School in Ghana. Among the many ideas that have been discussed, one that I have looked at with keen interest and has had lots of impact on my learning as well as my approach to teaching is, “The World of Childhood”.
This concept basically explains the three worlds of childhood, the interactions between them and the effect they have on teaching and learning. They are; The Academic world, The Social World and the Cyber (internet, ICT etc.) world (John Macbeath, 2015). From the lectures, the role of every teaching is to make connections meaningfully among these three worlds.
As a mathematics teacher, this concept has helped me to relate my teaching to the other worlds in which the child is found. In carrying out instruction, I include a number of ICT related activities. For instance, in teaching “Graphing Linear functions”, I draw on the student’s background in the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet to construct the table of values and later use it to plot the graph. A number of the students enjoyed doing this as they could easily do it and it was a lot more fun. Sometimes, I present my instruction through the use of Microsoft Power point.
In my school, there is a tremendous use of the Google Apps for Education. Some of the assessments are designed using the Google forms. Students respond and their scores including other feedback are sent to their parents via email. Class websites have been created using Google sites. Lesson plans, assessments, and other forms of instruction or announcements are put on the site for the attention of students and parents alike. Students are given lots of internet research assignments and have been taught internet safety skills to avoid any safety issues. Parents are given up to date information on their children’s learning through the use of the Gmail component of the Google Apps.
Students are put in groups to undertake projects and group assignments. This has encouraged peer tutoring and discussion among the students. Sometimes, each group is given the opportunity to discuss with the entire class what they have learnt in their respective project groups.
A number of field trips are organized in relation to the particular topic being treated. In teaching Business and Household Finance in Grade 10, students were taken to a nearby Shopping Mart to interact with the shop attendants and to observe how transactions or purchases are calculated and stocks are taken daily.
Parents are encouraged to supervise assignments that children bring home. To ensure that this is properly executed, parents are asked to append their signatures to every home work turned in by their children. Again, they are encouraged to pay regular visits to the school to find out about the progress of their children’s learning.

1. John, Macbeath. (Instructor). (2015). Lecture 3: The World of Childhood, Foundations of Teaching for Learning, Course 1: Introduction. Retrieved on March 4, 2015 from…...

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