By Rachid Khouya
By Rachid Khouya
Morocco World News
Smara, Morocco, March 13, 2013
The more years we spend in the classrooms, the more interested we feel about finding out what makes a good teacher and what is good teaching. In fact, the latter has nothing to do with how much we know about the technical side of the profession.
Of course, I should not generalize as there are those so-called teachers who believe that the older they get, the more useless and the careless they feel inside the stadiums of teaching and learning.
On the contrary, as far as I am concerned, good teaching has to do with the way you teach what the students want to learn rather than with what you know about teaching and what you teach.
In this context, I would like to share with you this beautiful and wise quote that says that a “teacher is like player of a musical instrument. He can produce either a sad music or a joyful music by the way of playing the instrument.”
This means a teacher’s playing style can affect, either positively or negatively, the learning process. To word it differently, “a good subject can be taught in an ineffective manner and a poor subject can be taught in an effective manner.”
We do not teach the same students, despite the fact that they might seem alike on the outside, and are all inside the same classroom, wearing the same school uniform and studying from the same textbooks.
In their learning styles and personality construction, they are different and varied. That’s why the teacher has different roles to play, different tasks to perform and different responsibilities to assume.
Undoubtedly, good teachers are made. They are not born. We should try to develop our teaching skills and professional talents as long as we are teaching and as long as we are alive. It is a life process that never ends once it starts.
Lola May stated, “there are three things to remember when teaching: know your stuff, know whom you are stuffing, and then stuff them elegantly.”
Bad teachers always think that their students are stupid, mentally and psychologically deficient and incompetent. They often waste time blaming the learners instead of blaming themselves and their teaching methods and strategies.
Wherever you go and wherever you meet them, they always lecture about a lack of motivation, the absence of today’s students’ readiness and willingness to learn like the previous generations they had already taught. “It is like a weak tradesman who always blames his tools and never admits his weak workmanship.”
If students do not listen to what we say, the solution is that we should be quiet and listen to what they have to say about the way we are and the way we teach. Teaching is like singing. We do not sing for ourselves when we are on the stage, we sing for the audience.
Similarly, many teachers keep teaching themselves instead of teaching the learners. It is high time we revised our teaching styles so as to guarantee involving the students in the learning process. Otherwise, the camel will be ruining what it tills, as our popular proverb says.
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