Monday, November 17, 2014

Teachers – Please Listen to Us Too

The Good Students in Class

Some students knew all the answers. They were the smart ones. We all wanted to be like them.

‘Have you understood everything?’

They would raise their hands, the teachers would ask them the question and it would end there. The teacher would ask the class this, ‘Have you understood everything?’ Then those smart students that always understood everything would say yes, and the teacher would assume that everyone understood the concept or the chapter.

Don’t Share. Just Compete. Come out First. Every one else loses.

Rather than working with each other, most students (me included) did not want to share the information they had with other students, because it was a competition and everyone wanted to come first. So the only person the student could rely on was the teacher, and the teacher would assume the good student’s opinion was the opinion of the whole class.

Try Explaining this to an Adult

If the student would try explaining the situation to the adults, most of them would tell the student he or she is not listening well in class. It was hard for the good student as well, because when an academically bright student understood a concept well, he or she had to wait for the rest of the class to catch up.

The Importance of Understanding the Basics

I did not understand the basics of a concept or subject well. Sometimes a teacher would explain a basic concept in class and I would not understand that part very well. I may have not listened to that lecture well or the teacher may have not explained it well enough.

Now the next few lectures are based on this basic concept, and because I did not understand the basic concept properly I am not able to understand the remaining lectures as well.

The teacher did not like me too much, and would not come back and teach it to me individually, so I would not try asking. Also because I was memorizing everything, I had no emotional bond with the subject. So I would forget what I learned within a week. Then I would have to revise everything all over again a few days before the exams.

As a student what I really would have appreciated was if:-

·     Equal Treatment - All students were treated equally no matter what grade they got.
·     Thorough Understanding of the Basics - If a student did not understand the basics well, a separate class must be organized to teach that student the concept well.
·     No Raising Hands Policy – Let the school arrange white boards for the whole class. When the teacher asks a question let all the students write their answers on the board. After some time let the students show their answers together and the teacher can evaluate and see which student understood what and how she can proceed forward as such.

But there are so many students in a classroom. It is hard to give this individual attention to each student. There must be a better way?

Let us learn together
Tweet @AbhishekShetty_
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