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You Can Be An Innovative Instructor

Updated on October 26, 2016
Jacqueline4390 profile image

Jacqueline Williamson graduated with a BBA in Personnel Admin., an MPA in HR Management and an MS in Education.

An innovated Instructor is not limited to the usual classroom setting ... he or she can look beyond the usual and make things enjoyable.
An innovated Instructor is not limited to the usual classroom setting ... he or she can look beyond the usual and make things enjoyable.

Introduction

An Innovative Instructor is one who can take a lump of coal and see the diamond in the rough. He/she has the insight to recognize brilliance in a student no matter how mundane that student may seem. The Innovative Instructor uses the imagination as a vehicle of transporting students to undiscovered lands of learning. These type of teachers get their creativity naturally and not from what they learned in college.

The first step in becoming a more evolved instructor is to plan a method of review that will give you thorough and accurate information about your strengths and weaknesses. This insight should allow you to examine what works and what needs to be either cast away or modified.

This article is designed to give you skills in planning and implementing a method of review that is logical, usable, and capable of assisting you in becoming a progressive instructor in your teaching techniques on a continuing basis. Your development as an evolved teacher in turn enhances student learning and improves the feedback you receive.

Evolved teachers are not afraid of trying new things and exploring different methods.
Evolved teachers are not afraid of trying new things and exploring different methods.

Follow the Road that Leads to Being an Innovative Instructor

Gauging your evolutionary progression can be reviewed in two major ways:

1. Methodology

2. Outcome of Instruction


  1. Methodology involves assessing your ability to establish goals; plan lessons that meet those goals; select or prepare appropriate instructional materials, and use effective teaching methods.

  2. Outcome of instruction involves quantifying the consequences of instruction in terms of student achievement.

    Valuation of instructional effectiveness should examine both of these aspects of instruction.

    Before any appraisal efforts are undertaken, you need to carefully plan how you will gather feedback and from whom. Evaluations should be based on information obtained from a variety of sources.

Your fellow instructors can give you the best feedback because they understand teaching.
Your fellow instructors can give you the best feedback because they understand teaching.

Feedback Sources

  1. Teachers—other teachers can suggest additional materials you could use or alternative methods and techniques that seem to work. If an individual student is causing problems, other teachers may be able to tell you whether that student’s behavior is unique to your class, and you may be able to draw on their experience in helping you to solve the problem.

  2. Students—your students observe you daily at close range, over an extended period of time. They are in the best position to see your overall performance, and they know whether they are motivated by your lessons and whether they feel they are making progress. Student performance is the ultimate test of teacher effectiveness, measuring that performance is a key source of feedback on your effectiveness. The feedback can reveal whether students are responding to you as a teacher and grasping the information presented in your lessons.

  3. Department Supervisor—such persons have a level of expertise, experience, and objectivity that can be of great potential help to you as a teacher. They are in an excellent position to assist you in identifying ways to overcome instructional weakness.

  4. You—you are also an excellent source of feedback. You know better than anyone else does what your goals and objectives are. Through the process of self-evaluation, you can evaluate how well you are meeting those goals and objectives. Critical self-evaluation may also reveal areas of strength that you can capitalize upon and areas of weakness that you need to work on.

The appraisal system is not your enemy ... but a glimpse into what works and what needs working on.
The appraisal system is not your enemy ... but a glimpse into what works and what needs working on.

Appraisal Methods

  1. Interpretations

  2. Specifications

  1. Interpretations—in most institutions, administrators are required to observe each of their instructors, or each new instructor, a certain number of times during the year and give their interpretation. This need not be a threatening situation. If you are putting effort into the planning and execution of your lessons and are open to suggestions for improvement, such observations can be productive and helpful.

  2. Specifications—individual institutions, districts, and states often prepare such checklists with specifications for what is required of their instructors to be used with and by their own educators. In using prepared specification checklists; each form describes what experts in the field have decided is necessary in becoming a fully efficient and effective instructor. The results of such devices should be considered together with feedback from other sources.

Similar checklists can be used to have students review your performance. When asking students to gauge your teaching presentation, it is important to explain to them why it will be helpful to you. Included is a sample checklist.

Sometimes students can give you very positive feedback and are very candid in their observations.
Sometimes students can give you very positive feedback and are very candid in their observations.

Student Reaction Questionnaire Summary

1. Are the explanations given by the teacher clear? No\Yes\ Sometimes

  1. Does the teacher display knowledge of the subject? No\Yes\Sometimes

  2. Are the presentations made by the teacher interesting? No\ Yes\ Sometimes.

  3. Does the teacher use audiovisual material to clarify difficult parts of a topic? No\Yes\ Sometimes

  4. Are the assignments directly related to the presentations? No\Yes\ Sometimes.

  5. Are the tests given by the teacher fair? No\Yes\ Sometimes

  6. Are the test results given to the students? No\Yes\ Sometimes

  7. Do the tests cover the information presented by the teacher? No\Yes\ Sometimes

  8. Is the grading system fair and clear? No\Yes\Sometimes

  9. Are the tests very difficult? No\Yes\Sometimes

Now I know what it feels like to be an evolved instructor!
Now I know what it feels like to be an evolved instructor!

In Summation

Most people undertake the career of teaching because they desire to make a positive difference in the way others learn. Just like doctors, it is a practice that should improve as you discover new methods of enhancing the learning experience.

A plant that is undernourished will become ineffective and eventually cease to live. A teacher who does not progress past rudimentary teaching techniques will become stagnant and cease to be effective. Are you a progressive instructor?

The Constant Evolution of Teaching

Are you an Evolving Instructor?

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    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
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      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      Unless you can grow and experience new and different things ... you will never become an Evolved Instructor.

    • Kathy Carr profile image

      Kathy Carr 3 years ago from Chicago, Illinois

      I am an Evolving Instructor and I worked with Preschoolers and found this to be on point. I've found that even Preschool Teachers should evaluate themselves to see if they are moving with the times. So many times I have noted teachers who have just lost all zeal, that's if it was there in the first place. You train for this, go to school for this and you allow the passion to be snatched from you because you wont evaluate your self. I've seen it happen so many times. Wow! Very interesting!.

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      Point well taken. An evolving instructor is what ever teacher should strive for. Great to hear that you have reached this pinnacle! Keep up the good work.

    • kerlund74 profile image

      kerlund74 3 years ago from Sweden

      When it comes to methodology... In my company (working with education) are the instructors sharing there best methods in a "wiki" page. Everyone can edit and comment on how they used a method and so on.

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      The important thing is the exchange of ideas. Using a "wiki" page can be a good method of sharing. The ability of everyone editing can be a plus or a minus. A plus when the editing is based on educated experience or proven method and a minus when it has more personal bias than true educational value.

    • kerlund74 profile image

      kerlund74 3 years ago from Sweden

      The purpose is that it should be based on educated experience or proven method, and it have worked fine. But it may be important to set some "rules" about the purpose:)

    • Kathy Carr profile image

      Kathy Carr 3 years ago from Chicago, Illinois

      For one, what may work for some, May not work for others. When we enter into an environment to impart some instruction, we must hear the voices and pay attention to their body language. Those are the tell tell signs of who's prepared to receive and who's not. Our degrees and backgrounds in most instances are not prepared to meet the on going demand and challenges that our teaching environment is up against. God forbid if a teacher is in the field because it's an open field for jobs.

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      I must agree about that. Teachers are special people ... I am referring to those who have a special "calling" or talent for teaching. It should be more than just a job; it is a calling! Those who are in it for the money miss out on the joy of sharing.

    • profile image

      Kathy Carr 3 years ago

      I agree with you whole heartedly. Yes, the joy of sharing. Amen.

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      I truly believe that teaching should not be drudgery. Students respond to the level of dedication displayed by their instructors. They also respond to the level of stress.

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      An Evolving Teacher should begin each day with this chant ... I CAN make a difference ... I WILL make a difference ... I MUST make a difference!

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 3 years ago from Memphis

      Summer time is the perfect time for Teachers to "recharge their batteries and plan their strategies" for the Fall Sessions! Never stop Evolving ...

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 2 years ago from Memphis

      Burn-out can be experienced in a great many professions but careers in teaching and nursing suffer from it the most. This is when the "evolutionary process" should take place. Putting new life into an old job is the best way to revive it.

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 21 months ago from Memphis

      Keep the magic in your vocation; become an Innovative Instructor!

    • Jacqueline4390 profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS 7 months ago from Memphis

      Why be ordinary when you can be extraordinary!

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