Use Of Cognitive Development Theory In The Classroom

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The cognitive development theory takes the students cognitive ability into account, this is a rather useful approach when dealing with students in the classroom environment, since most of the students in the classroom have different ability. In the classroom there are very weak students, average and above average students.

This approach helps the teacher to classify students into various domains within the cognitive development theory and uses it to cater the needs of all the students in the classroom.

A vast majority of teachers within the Maldives believe that exam papers should be difficult, however it it never be. Exam papers should be arranged in a way that all the students in the classroom be able to attend the exam. In this regard when we consider the CIE exams, we can see very clearly how the questions are structured, there are areas within the question paper that all most all the students in the classroom can attempt and score more, some parts within the question papers are specifically designed for the high achievers to check their knowledge and understanding and how they can apply what they have learned into real-life scenarios.

With my personal experience as a teacher who as been teaching since 2007, I have found this approach to be the one that best suits my needs. In the meantime motivating the students are also an important aspect of teaching that teachers should always remember and should take into account. Even a student that is not performing very well can be motivated that he/she will participate as the rest of the students in the class. In the meantime, sadly there are some schools within are community that divided students into there ability. In these schools all the high achievers are in the same class. However this is something that wrong and something that should never be practiced. Classrooms should consist of mixed ability students, so that one students learn from each other. Things such as ZPD can only be applied in these classes where, high achievers can teach the average students and bring them to the Zone Of Proximal Development.

Zone of Proximal Development & Its Uses & Application…!

indexThe first time i went into a classroom to teach was during my first teaching practice in the year 2006 in Male English School, the class was full of students of mixed ability, however my secound teaching practice in the same year was at Aminiya school and it was a totally different thing, all the cream was in the same class. When i became a full time teacher in my own island in the year 2007 it was almost the same as the class as MES, students with mixed ability.

ZPD, mentions that higher level students can be used to cater the need of the other students and bring the rest of the students to the same standard as the rest. This method has many positive outcomes in the classroom. A social relationship can be formed among the students and this relationship tends to grow stronger in bonds as time passes , one student learns from the other while the teacher acts as a guide and a facilitator. The teachers role is to guide the students to the correct path by finding the N th that are made by them.

In the tradition method and classroom, the teachers role is to dictake the students and show them who is the boss, in this regard the teacher become the bull himself. However in recent times it has shown  that the teacher doesnt have to be as angry as a bull inorder to teach and take control of the classroom. It is the sole responsibility of the teacher to engage the students and make the students work with one other and ZPD is a extremely useful technique which can be used in the classroom. It promotes learning, helping peers and also make an effective bonds of friendship within the classroom, the lower achieving students no longer feel neglected in the classroom.

Macro Photography with Extension Tubes

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For those of us who can’t afford to spend a few hundred dollars on a dedicated 1:1 macro lens, then one of the best solution is the use of macro extention tubes. I paid a relatively low price for an Auto – Focus capable macro extention tube which can be used in any Nikon camera, and for the time being I’m very happy about the results, that I have been able to get.

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Here is my current setup

—- Nikon D7000

—- Nikon 50mm F1.8D

—- macro extention tubes 12mm, 20mm & 36mm ( $40, from ebay)

—- a built in flash diffuser ( $5)

 

This combination give the magnification that I have calculated below

12+20+36 = 68mm

50mm * 1.5 ( cause D7000 has a cropped sensor ) = 75mm

It Gives Me Magnification Of 1.99 when all three tubes are used

 

However there are few things that you need to be aware of when using such a setup like this…

—- the view finder is very dark

—- when using all three tubes the camera hunts for AF

 

Here are a few tips

— set metering to spot

—- use single point AF

— use the centre AF point for precision

— switch OFF auto focus & focus manually.

Here are some sample images that I have captured…! Most of the images are 16mp, uncropped images….!

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Uses of Behavioural Learning In The Classroom

indexokIn the typical Maldivian classroom students come from the same country, however they do not accommodate the same discipline. There are some students in the classroom who are very well disciplined, however on the other hand there are students with many issues.

It is rather important for the teacher to mention to the students what the teacher expects from them, the behaviors that are tolerated and the ones which are not allowed should be mentioned to the students, alongside the consequences.

Since 2007, whenever I walk into a classroom for the first time i always remember to mention that ” if the teacher or the class is interrupted or disturbed by an individual student or by a very small minority of students, then they are violating the rights of each and every student in the classroom.

Many students are attention seekers who are willing to find loop holes within the teacher, whenever the teacher gives them any free time they tend to seek advantage. A rather common type of behavior found in our classrooms is bullying. And one of the best ways to deal with this issue is using the behavioral learning.  Giving punishment doesn’t mean that we have to beat up the child, however as a consequence of unwanted or unexpected behavior certain privileges’ can be taken away from the child so that the child feels more guilty about what he has done. An example of this can be only the students who are up to the accepted levels of discipline can be the ones who can participate in extracurricular activities.

Creating Positive Learning Environment

indexookokTeachers have many things to think about; but an important aspect of the job is to create a positive learning environment. Here are a few tips on how to make sure your classroom is all it can be.

When your students walk into your classroom at the beginning of the year (and every day thereafter), what do they see and feel? More directly, are you setting the tone for a positive learning environment?

Teachers have plenty of responsibilities in the classroom; they must create lesson plans and organize everything from papers to pencils. While these tasks are highly important, it is also important that the teacher take seriously their responsibility to also create a learning environment in which his or her students will thrive.

In a positive learning environment, students, staff and parents work together to bring about peaceful classrooms where everyone feels respected, safe and accepted, and where the main focus is on learning. A teacher’s responsibility is to make students feel at ease when they are in the classroom; encouraging them to open up and engage in the learning process.

There are several ways in which a teacher can enable students to succeed in their classroom; but everything stems from the tone he or she sets with their enthusiasm. When the teacher is not openly enthusiastic about what they are teaching, students will have a hard time getting excited about lesson plans and assignments. It is important, therefore, that the teacher do whatever is necessary to get excited about their lessons and about learning.

How the teacher feels radiates into the classroom environment. With this in mind, a teacher should make sure they do what it takes to feel good about themselves as well as about their lessons. Just about every teacher wears a lanyard to hold their identification or classroom keys. Lanyards are ropes worn around the neck; and typically, a lanyard does not reflect any particular style. This does not have to be the case, and a few decorative and cheery lanyards in a teacher’s wardrobe can make everyone feel more at ease and enthused. Such a simple tool, the lanyard; and yet such a difference it can make in putting the teacher in a good mood

My Teaching Philosophy

Introduction

Teaching and learning involves more than just theories, it depends on the teachers and the students motivation, their goals and the methodologies that are used to achieve the objective. Since the year 2007 teaching has been my profession and during the past few years I have been teaching both Physics & English Language, and these two very different subjects takes different approaches to teaching.

Teaching Physics

The traditional notion of teaching physics consisted of learning a bunch of formula and calculations, however at present this approach has changed. At the moment students are required to do a lot of logical thinking in physics. More than 65% of the entire paper is based on applications mean while the rest is based on calculations which promotes the application. While teaching physics I have developed a habit of mentioning a very important thing in the class, which is ” study physics to use it and apply it in your daily life”, since physics deals with the students daily life, measurements, current and electricity, waves and sounds, nuclear physics, optical devices etc, each and every topic which is learned in the classroom can be applied and used in the students daily life.

Teaching English

Teaching English is not about learning the rules of grammar, in my opinion English has to be learned in order to communicate between one person and another, parents often misinterpret the purpose of learning English. The scope of learning is not about the grades in my opinion. Since 2011 I have been teaching English language and the first time i walk into the classroom I mention to the students that the number of A’s, B’s and C’s doesn’t not indicate whether you have mastered English. However I tell the students that what is important is that end, whether how many students are able to write properly, able to read and interpret meanings, able to listen and understand , and able to speak properly and fluently in English language, this is the reason study English, if a student masters these four very critical and important skills, it opens a gate way for the future. It makes students succeed in other subjects and lead into showing various improvements in other areas, I student who get better at language also gets better at cognitive thinking.

Using Logic

As an English teacher and a Physics teacher, one of the difficult barriers that are to over is the habits that students have developed in other levels. In this regard I have come across many students who are unable to link between one subject and the other, students who are unable to answer questions when they are given indirectly, students who are unable to apply what they learn in the classroom.

English & Physics Teacher, Photographer!!!