Teachers as Researchers: A Requirement for Excellence?
Research in education is critical if teachers want to stay at the top of their profession. The key to becoming a master educator is to discover what others are doing in the industry and implementing those findings in your school or classroom.
Several reasons exist for teachers as researchers. First, for teachers to maintain excellence, they must grow and expand in their profession. They must not stay at the same level of competence from year to another. Industries do not stay the same. New knowledge and new discoveries are always on the rise and introduce new levels of effectiveness.
Mastery of subject matter, skills, and technique demand that teachers become constant researchers. Graduating as a licensed teacher do not guaranteed mastery.
Because of inadequate knowledge in a subject, teachers need to study and gain greater understanding and clarity in it. Greater comprehension leads to mastery, which gives educators an opportunity to bring something new to the academic table.
Improving Professional technique is crucial if teachers want to become masters of what they do best. For example, knowing how to manage a classroom adequately, instruct and assess students, and foster superior learning, are major critical skills for providing the highest form of education possible.
Teaching with competence increases substantially when a teacher knows how to create and effectively deliver a lesson plan.
Teacher-Research should be conducted in a variety of ways, including:
Books, Internet, and Videos
Revisiting theories, case studies and best practices will go a long way in bridging the gaps and solidifying the knowledge you have already accumulated in your area of teaching. New strategies in STEAM and IB World programs are always manifesting.
Observing a classroom in the light of personal or industrial theories is a great way to evaluate if an academic practice or strategy will be effective in your classroom. Teaches can learn and adapt new techniques by watching applied theories via seminars, mock classrooms, and teacher enrichment training.
Buzz Groups or Teacher Teams
Meeting with fellow teachers and brainstorming and applying new ideas in the classroom is the stuff that teacher teams and buzz groups are made of. The pressure to come up with innovative teaching ideas strategies will be an ongoing demand.
The world is changing rapidly and so are students. With more students opting to study at home during the COVID 19 crisis, and perhaps afterward, new ways to adapt to this change will be crucial in providing students with a quality education.
Best practices and Sequential Case Studies
The best practices and case studies of other successful school districts must be revisiting time and time again to see what is still effective. Some ideas and application may no longer be effective in the modern classroom.
For example, some disciplinary strategies had to be discontinued. Paddling was an acceptable disciplinary strategy in the 60’s and 70’s until the practice was eliminated after studies showed that paddling was largely ineffective or dangerous.
Technology in Teaching and Learning
Another area that teacher-research should be constantly applied in is the use of technology in teaching and learning. Finding better way to operate the Smartboard Interactive White Board to conduct classroom instructions, adapting lesson plans to iPads, Chromebooks, as well as utilizing educational videos to foster student mastery of a subject will promote the power of technology in the classroom.
Many school districts teach their entire curriculum via technology, including smartphones for research and sharing information.
The Extraordinary Benefits of Teacher-Research
- Increased Competence
- Technology Literacy
- Classroom Command
- Ability to Empower Students
- Mastery of Subject, Teaching Skills and Technique
The acquisition of such benefits will go a long way in enabling teachers to stay on top of their game and give students the greatest education possible.
Dedication to academic excellence, delight in academic innovation are the inner qualities of a Teachers as Researchers. The fact is that great teachers always go beyond the norm of basic classroom instruction. They launch out into the deep with year of devotion to the betterment of not only their students, but also their peers.
Great teachers as researchers are eager to share the results of their research with other teachers, not only in their school or district, but also with the teachers of the world. Books are writing and distributing in the hope of educating a generation that will lead the world into an ever-improving quality of life and progressiveness.