Teaching is a practice that is being considered as a lost art in the Western society. Some of the reasons for this are cited to be related to the growing complexity of modern technology. However, there are some other factors also involved that make teaching a challenging job for many teachers. The aim of this article is to highlight some of these key issues in relation to teaching and especially how they can impact on teaching practices today.
Traditional pedagogy in the sense of traditional grammar schools has been seen to be a limiting factor in terms of modern learning today. In a bid to move towards a more dynamic approach to teaching, a focus is placed on creative problem solving skills of students and how to organize their thinking for them to learn particular things. This was considered to be one of the most important aspects of the classical liberal arts, which is why there were hardly any schools that specialized in the teaching of this kind. With the evolution of the social structure of the society and the increasing demands of education from various corners of the society, however, the concept of classical liberal arts became obsolete. But this does not mean that there are no longer pedagogical approaches to education; rather it just means that they have been commercialized in different forms.
On the other hand, there have been various new developments in pedagogy. These include cross-cultural communication strategies, the practice of cultural science and pedagogy which essentially means a mix of knowledge from within different cultures to help make the education a better experience for everyone. A lot of research has been initiated in this direction to achieve this end. The good thing with the developments in pedagogy is that there is an increased acceptance of this as a viable pedagogical approach for the sake of social justice, equity and quality education. Such interventions in the field of teaching were also made possible by such developments.
The biggest challenge that teachers face today is how to motivate and engage their learners. This is the point when scaffolding learning emerges. Scaffolding Learning aims to raise the bar of good teaching through various innovative teaching techniques such as time management, creativity and involvement of the learners in the process of teaching.
Teachers should now use time management concepts such as timeboxing, chunking and time management planning to teachable moments. Time boxing is a method of planning activities that guide and organize students during a lesson. They are the key to understanding topics because they provide structure to the teaching moments. For instance, a teacher can introduce a discussion topic and then begin the class discussion at a particular time which will guide and organize the students towards the next activity.
Teachers should also use brainstorming and group projects to help them organize their classroom. This will enable them to effectively engage their learners and provide structure to the teaching moments. There are also key elements of collaborative learning like role modeling and student leadership that should be utilized in teachers' workshop for the benefit of students . . . . . . and for the benefit of teachers themselves. These are the means that can bring about the development of effective communication skills.