My Experience in Child Development
I have experience in Childhood development. I’ve taught over twenty plus years. My experience ranges from infants to school-age children. I have always taught three-year-olds and up. For almost two years, I have had the pleasure of working with children that are 18 months to 24 months old. I am the Lead teacher for our Toddler program.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Judy N. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
Although working in a private preschool has helped me in childhood development, learning strategies are also important. The courses that I have taken have helped me learn so much. One of the most important things to implement is classroom management. The TEFL course has given me so much knowledge. I used what I learned to make a difference in the way I teach my classroom. The course insists that you learn your students, interests, abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. Highlight on their strengths, and build a bridge from their strengths to their weaknesses. Encourage your students to try new ways to learn objectives without giving up on the things they feel at difficult for them. Another key to teaching is to always be prepared. Your lesson plans and daily routines are super important. When you show your students that you are not ready for the day, they tend to be all over the place. Children need structure. A great routine helps the day flow much smoother. Another great thing to do is knowing your student's abilities. One of the best ways to learn significant things about your students is assessments. I do assessments at the beginning of the year as well as throughout the entire school year. We only require to do assessments three times, but I choose to assess my students once a month. I like to see if there is growth in certain areas, and how much more I can do to assist them in grasp particular objectives. That will help to plan your lessons for the following weeks and months. Sometimes after assessing will allow you to implement other strategies or eliminate things from your lesson plans that your students may or may not be ready for.
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Every Child is Unique
Each child develops at their own pace. Instead of focusing on negative behavior, set an example of positive behavior. Children will learn certain things by watching other students and participating in the daily routine. Consistency with children is important. You have to lead children by example. Teachers that constantly show students the daily routine and go over the daily plan, will exemplify a class of structure and students that will follow rules on a more consistent basis versus a teacher that does not follow a daily schedule and lack a daily routine. Another profound teaching mechanism is tone. Voice tone is used to communicate effectively in the classroom. Teachers voice sets the tone in a classroom. The loudness or softness of your voice can hinder students from fully responding to a teacher. Sometimes students may turn away and become timid if a teacher comes across as being overbearing and unwelcoming. Shouting is the worst and does not get the result you want in your class. Instead, a teacher should go to the child, explain and show what you want to get that child to do. It is always good to model what you want, talk it out, and use a soothing yet firm voice.
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Early Childhood Education
When I decided that I would choose education as my profession, I set important goals for myself. I decided to go to school to further my education. One of my many accomplishments was achieving an Associates's degree in Early Childhood Education. Taking courses in my field was not the only thing I needed to do to see my career blossom; I needed to take the information I learned and use it in my classroom. There were many techniques and strategies to choose to help me become a better instructor. I took great notes and begin to implement the strategies in my classroom. Now, things did not change overnight, but the change did occur. The director and instruction specialist have complimented me quite frequently. I have also been given compliments from my parents. They have informed me that they appreciate how I have educated their children; they are super proud of the development and see the development and growth of their child. I have learned communication skills in the classroom and with the parents is imperative and beneficial. A communication line allows the student, teacher, and parent to help each other to reach all goals needed for a successful school year. A daily routine such as pushing their chairs under the table once they are done. Cleaning up and putting toys in their correct spots is being taught as well. So it will carry over even when they are at home. Teaching manners is also important. I teach my students to say, “please,” and “thank you”.
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Taking this course has helped me tremendously. I have received feedback from parents. They will notify you if they notice a change in their children whether it’s good or bad. Most importantly, parents love to brag on the great things they notice their children doing. As teachers will have all the ability to make or break a child’s ability to learn and enjoy learning. The courses that I have taken has encouraged teachers to be super creative. Teachers should find exciting ways to invite children to learn. This course has truly helped me improve my teaching skills. When teaching any age group, always provide all kinds of fun and interesting activities. Make learning fun! Children can learn through play. They are like sponges; children love to learn when you provide an assortment of activities. Some of my favorite learning activities are games, music, books, and cognitive toys. Children enjoy all kinds of music. They like to participate in songs. I have Learned that their favorites are “ The wheels on the bus,” and “ Baby Shark.” It’s all right to keep playing the same songs. The children like repetitive songs; it also helps teaching sequence, language, and memory skills. Playing music has always helped in classroom management. The tone of the music that is playing helps the kids to become calmer when playing music. Another technique teachers can use is role-playing. This helps kids participate in music. Music games are fun; this will help students follow instructions, learn to listen as well as communicate while having fun.
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There is one more technique I would like to discuss. Having fun and learning with books can be quite exciting. Books and picture cards are very essential to communicate with young children who are learning to communicate. Teachers should continually go over routines, objects and learning concepts daily in the classroom. It doesn’t hurt to repeat the same concepts more than once a day; multiple times of the same concept throughout the day can be quite beneficial to students learning. It is great to utilize many things other than picture cards or books. Teachers should use real objects as well. This helps to demonstrate with the picture cards or books so the child can associate what is being taught. Concrete objects bring learning to reality. Displaying real-life objects also helps students relate to real-life situations. Minimizing class into smaller groups are also great. This helps the teacher with class management; The use of small group helps bring a more effective learning classroom. The smaller the group, the less likely the distractions students will have. Learning time becomes more effective when students can easily engage in activities without distractions. For example, when we are having children’s choice centers, I divide the class into small groups. I group my students in groups of two or three and rotate them as I monitor each group. This allows the teacher to effectively demonstrate and assess the learning objectives that are being taught.
Teachers should try to use any moment as a teachable moment. There is always something that can be taught; but more than anything, there is always something students can learn. As students learn through example and experience, provide new things for them to learn and explore. When you do not provide interesting and fun activities, that is when behavior problems will happen. Most incidents or behavior problems occur when students are not engaged in an activity.
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This course has helped me become a better teacher. I can enjoy teaching. I understand how students learn and develop. One of the most rewarding things as a teacher is to watch students mimic my daily routine and show their mastery of a particular objective. I plan to use the information from this course to help me stay positive and focus on my students.
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