Understanding First Years of School
Everything we learn takes place in social context, from birth and throughout our lives . Learning on the other hand ,occurs as parents talk to their children, as children play and interact with other children, as the teacher supports students. Learning takes place through our interactions and communication with others. A toddler is now in his first school age where there will be new behaviors to expect . How can teachers nurture independence and acceptance of the new stage they are going to pass through ?
Teacher's responsibilities should include the following:
1- Planning and preparing lessons, grading papers and preparing report cards.
2-Deciding on the most appropriate teaching methods to suit the particular needs of the class.
3- Using creative and practical skills to prepare inspiring learning materials.
4-Combining play and interactive activities with an increasing focus on early academic learning, including letter recognition, phonics, numbers and an awareness of science and nature.
5-Utilizing play and interactive activities to develop language and vocabulary introduce scientific and mathematical concepts and improve social skills.
6-Planning and organizing a range of individual and group activities, including role play, movement, dance, singing, games, arts and crafts and nature activities.
7- Maintaining order and discipline in the classroom.
8- Help children to develop a sense of self-respect, independence, and confidence.
9- Help children to acquire a set of social skills and abilities to communicate with and relate to other children and adults.
10- Supervising the work of other employees, such as teaching assistants.
11- Communicating with parents, teachers and other professionals, both formally and informally.
12- Participating in education conferences and workshops.
13-Learning difficulties, consulting other professionals where appropriate.
14-Work in teams with other teachers to develop various instructional methods.
15- Providing constructive feedback and guidance to students experiencing educational or personal challenges.
What happens at the age of 6 ?
In this article the focus in on children at the age of 6; at this age a child is supposed to be able to count ,draw ,identify letters and numbers, exhibit imaginary characters and should be capable of using his fine motor skills correctly. Children at this age want to assert their independence .They are more aware of their own needs and desires. Children learn essential life skills, like dressing and feeding . They learn best when there are clear rules and expectations . These rules are supposed to be taught by the teacher . For instance ,there has to be a chart with all these rules in a classroom.Children are at the beginning of a long term relationship with studying .
What are some of the classroom activities?
1- Reading stories
One of the most important literacy development is when children start to imitate adults while reading . Reading time helps students feel enthusiastic about the use of pictures, phonic and contextual clues to help establish meaning and it creates an atmosphere that derives pleasure .
2- Writing journals
A journal writing assignment is a method that helps students to record their reactions to an issue or idea . It is an expressive writing activity that promotes fluency and is used to attract children to express their feelings . He/ She adds more details to the writing assignments and enables them to review their grammatical errors when being checked by the teacher. It represents a follow up of their handwriting progress and presentational skills .
Teachers on their behalf ,have to reward the student's hard work.
There are at least two ways of looking at how children play. These include social play and fantasy play. Social play involves the extent to which children interact with other children. Fantasy play include their ability to pretend games . Teachers and parents have to be aware of the normal development aspects of play at different age levels .Children who are isolated in their play activities at an age when they need to be more outgoing may need encouragement.
As a conclusion ,school climate provides positive perception of the students' development . These include both feelings of safety and understanding of academic goals . Homework should be required ,explained and discussed. Rules should be clearly stated and rule violations imposed to punishment.