Since I was a kid, I wanted to become a teacher. I remember playing in my room “the teacher”. Teaching is a passion. I used to love those teachers who were nice to me.

education

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Self-Reflection

Since I was a kid, I wanted to become a teacher. I remember playing in my room “the teacher”. Teaching is a passion. I used to love those teachers who were nice to me. I saw them as a role model. I was fond of those teachers that their learning was easy to understand considering that I had problems in memorizing things. I used to hate the subjects which teachers were arrogant to me . Blazar and Kraft stated that those teachers that provide emotional and fully support and secure environment, “help students to become more self-reliant, motivated to learn, and willing to take risks.” (2016, chapter 2).  Therefore, Marroquin in 2016 declared that negative attitudes of teacher can lead to a dimishing academic achievemnt and harm for students’ physiological and psychological.

Before I started teaching, I had no actual teaching practice, I only learned the theory. The theory that I learned should be put into practice but it’s really different when it comes to being in a class- with varied abilities, behavioural issues and many other aspects. I had a different view as regards being a teacher. I only knew what the job of a teacher involved through my own teachers and how they taught me. As it is stated by Mawhinney, Park and Rinke (2016), in the past the teacher was the focal point (the teacher –was the centre). The teacher was the active one while the children were passive.

Nowadays teaching has changed so much from when I was a child. Teaching is not as easy a job as one might think. You need to learn to listen and get to know the children, support them, involve and engage them by finding out what interests them and what doesn’t, give them a role in the class, make them feel at ease and comfortable with talking and, last but not least, win their respect. Having said that, when I was a kid, I never had the opportunity to voice my opinion or think critically about anything as Selma statedI won’t teach my students the way I was taught. … I suffered through [teacher-centered teaching], which makes you very lazy and you don’t know how to think critically for anything …, kind of a way to disable somebody’s ability to do something”             (Mawhinney et al, 2016, p.1). I never learnt addition using playing cards or doing shapes using straws and popsicles sticks. Books were the only way of method of learning. As a student, I used to sit down and listen to the teacher. But somehow it left an impact on me. Being a bashful person, I feel unwilling to do something in front of others  for fear of consequences-making mistakes and be ridiculed as it happened to me in the past. Preferably, I listen and observe others talk.

In the present, students are given time to express themselves, do brainstorming, problem solving which helps them with their self-esteem. Furthermore, nowadays there is more technology and there are many ways in which we teachers can get to know our students and apply our lessons on such topics. For instance learning by doing circle time, group work, using buddy systems, receiving feedback from our students, using visual-aids and hands-on activities. I totally agree that drawing and self-portraits can express our emotions. It can allow access to different parts of human consciousness (Prosser and Loxley,2008 as cited in Bagnoli, 2009 p. 548) :communicating more holistically, and through metaphors, they can enhance empathetic understanding, capture the ineffable, and help us pay attention to reality in different ways, making the ordinary become extraordinary (Weber, 2008, as cited in Bagnoli p. 548 ).” Since I teach foreigners and there is the language barrier, I use a lot of drawing during numerous activities so children can express their feelings. Besides it’s really vital that self-portraits help them to learn about themselves. Moreover, I get to know my students and their family by various means, such as doing Open Days at school for parents, Traditional Food day, asking children to talk about their family, do activities with their family members and do a ‘Show and Tell’ about it. Due to this current situation, I am feeling more closed to parents and we are working hand in hand for the sake of the children.

 

Furlong in 2013 did a study about The Teacher I wish to be. Something that intrigued me was a question that every student teacher would demand to himself  “what kind of teacher do I wish to be?”. Sometimes even a qualified teacher at some point in time will ask herself if she succeded or not in this. We, teachers have to realise and remember that we do leave an impact on our students –positive or negative –it depends. As our teachers did so. Today’s world has changed a lot, and we have to support our students as much as possible. Having discipline in class, does not mean shouting at them as it did in the past. In fact yelling is not an effective discipline or means to understand, build bond, trust or respect. I do belief that dicipline is one of the key’s in a classroom.

I do no fully agree about the system here in Malta. Stigmatization is one of the threats in our society such as  being a foreigner, having disabilties or learning difficulties, different culture, and faith. The education system in Malta has to monitor and analyse all the systems from early years till secondary. Today, we do give a lot opportunities and rights to our students, but I still do think that students need to show respect to teachers. Having lots of distractions nowadays, balance is acquired. I do think that giving lots of hands on and tablets on a part we are loosing some students. My opinion this system is not adequate and should be revised. On the other hand, our educational became more inclusive which I am more than happy of it.

Teachers need to be strong and before judging or doing something we must profound what is inhibited of that problem. From our past experiences we teachers should be aware of these and learn from them. Every person gone through a different past and path, the important is to resolve by finding a solution for that.Teachers affect eternity; no one can tell where their influence stops.” (Adams, 1907, as cited in Ellis, 2015 p.1)

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