Obstacles Teachers May Face sample essay
In any education setting, teachers will come across a wide variety of obstacles throughout their career. These obstacles will differ in each and every classroom, depending on students’ social, cultural and ethnic background. It is vitally important as a teacher to overcome these obstacles to ensure that the students within your class are able to gain the highest possible outcomes, a quality education and enjoyment from their schooling. Some of the many obstacles that a teacher may face in a classroom setting include development abilities both academically and socially, behaviour problems and unmotivated students.
Students can differ from one another in several aspects, including age, mental ability, personal achievement, ethnic background, psychosocial development and cognitive development. These differences can affect how classroom learning happens (Snowman & Biheler, 2003). Children develop at different rates this is usually a result of different measures of intelligence, social interaction with peers and personal development. Whether it is physical, mental or emotional each student will differ, and this will also depend on their up bringing, prior knowledge, family circumstances and innate knowledge.
Social and emotional development problems will result in the student finding it hard to create relationships and develop learning skills with his or her peers and educators. Intellectual development, communication and speech difficulties will affect student’s concentration, memory, communication and understandings of certain tasks (BTEC First Children’s care, n. d). As a result of children developing differentl, it is vitally important for educators to track and maintain an understanding of how each student is progressing through out the year, this will result in not only being of benefit for the student but also the teacher.
According to Vygotsky, for the curriculum to be developmentally appropriate, the teacher must plan activities that encompass not only what children are capable of doing on their own but what they can learn with the help of others in group settings (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010). Therefore, by creating learning activities that are in learners’ zones of proximal development, and providing instructional scaffolding to support learning and development will accommodate the children by helping them gain a better understanding of the task at hand (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010). In saying this, this will ensure that the ducator is working to their full potential and ensuring that the students are getting the highest quality education.
Positive reinforcement is the process of increasing the frequency or duration of a behaviour as the result of presenting a reinforcer. Therefore, offering positive reinforcement will increase and maintain the probability that a particular behaviour will be repeated. There are many different types of reinforcers that can be used to increase behaviours, but it is significant to note that the type of reinforcer used depends on the individual and the situation.
While gold stars and tokens might be very effective reinforcement for a second-grader, they are not going to have the same effect with a high school or college student (Cherry, n. d). Also, if your students finish their work on time and have been successfully completing their work you may give them an early mark for lunch play, the students will eventually come to understand that finishing their work on time results in a rewards, therefore they will continue this behaviour.
We all apply reinforcers everyday, most of the time without even realising we are doing it. You may tell your child “good job” after he or she cleans their room; all of these things increase the probability that the same response will be repeated. Students may find tasks hard to complete at school and want to give up, by giving them positive reinforcement twill encourage them to want to keep going. Students are more likely to be motivated to learn if they are positively reinforced for completing a project or task (Snowman & Biehler, 2003).
Having a positive attitude as an educator and constant positive feedback also encourages students to feel secure in their learning environment. It can also be used to adjust behavioural issues, whilst punishment and negative reinforcement decreases unacceptable behaviour, it doesn’t teach desirable ones, in saying this; it means that positive reinforcement is more effective. However punishment is sometimes required in some circumstances, as when all forms of punishment is removed it can cause the class to become more disruptive.
Research has found that some types of punishers are more affective these include; desists, timeout or detention (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010). Skinner believed that peoples innate needs, wants and desires can be avoided, as they alter their current behaviour according to what has happened to them due to the previous consequences of their past behaviour. He called this approach operant conditioning he identified three types of responses or operant that can follow behaviours, these include; Neutral operants, reinforcers and punishers (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010).
Not sure of the reference? Having unmotivated students in the classroom can make it difficult due to the fact that other students may get distracted and lose focus. Unmotivated students have the ability to disrupt other students that can have a detrimental affect on the entire classroom and overpower teacher’s capabilities. There are many factors relating to the cause of unmotivated students in the classroom. These include behavioural issues and cognitive development.
Students with learning difficulties may feel lost and confused by what is being taught and therefore give up on listening and trying. It is important to identify these students and put in place the appropriate means necessary to ensure that these students are understanding and motivated. Motivation is often classed in two different categories; extrinsic motivation and intrinsic motivation the difference being; extrinsic motivation is to engage in an activity as a means to and end. And intrinsic motivation is to be involved in an activity for its own sake. Eggen & Kauchak, 2010) Motivation is working towards maintaining and sustaining our efforts to reach a particular goal (Snowman & Biehler, 2003). In some classroom settings children display inappropriate or problem behaviours which can make it difficult for themselves and the students around them to learn, and also isolate the child from his or her peers (Child Study Centre, 2002). Therefore it is crucial as an educator to establish and maintain a classroom environment that will motivate students to learn.
Having motivation to learn is essential for students to become successful in their learning. It is vital that students set both academic and social goals to work towards to ensure that both the student and the teachers are driving towards the same goal. According to Eggen and Kauchak (2010) motivated students have positive attitudes towards school, they describe school as satisfying, persist on difficult tasks and cause fewer behaviour management problems, process information in depth and excel in classroom learning experiences (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010).
By creating a positive learning environment within the classroom, students will be encouraged to achieve and set learning goals to attain higher results. In a positive learning environment students feel secure and as a result are more willing to take risks with their learning. A classroom performance goal structure is characterised by the teacher emphasising student performance relative to normative standards rather than relative to the student’s prior performance.
Features of this structure are the teacher’s provision of more public versus private performance feedback, and the valuation of correct answers over effort and learning (Hughes. , Wu & West, 2011). Through incorporating student’s interest into the lesson, relating lessons to real life and matching students abilities will help to motivate the students to strive for better results and develop a love of learning. Motivation within the classroom and a child’s need to succeed in their academic life is based on “Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs based on two groupings: deficiency needs and growth needs.
Within the deficiency needs, each lower need must be met before moving to the next higher level. Once each of these needs has been satisfied, if at some future time a deficiency is detected, the individual will act to remove the deficiency” (Huitt, 2007). In conclusion, obstacles that teachers will face throughout their career are respective to each individual child and their differences when it comes to developmental ability, motivation and behavioural issues.
Ongoing professional development is a necessary component in ensuring that an educator is properly trained in all areas. This will ensure that educator’s feel confident when an obstacle arises and the skills to be able to deal and respond to any given situation.. Therefore, incorporating a safe and happy classroom environment, ongoing professional development, understanding each individual child’s needs and backgrounds and motivating students will help overcome some obstacles that a teacher may face.
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