In this chapter, we shall cover
• The role and challenges of the teacher in the new millennium
• The characteristics of the teacher in the new millennium
• Forecast and plan for changes in education
• Knowledge disseminator
• Interpersonal relationship agent
• Management of change
• Globalization of education
Arnold,R. et.al. 1991. Educating for a Change. Toronto: Doris Marshall Institute for Education and Action.
Burbules,N.C. & Torres,C. (2000). Globalization and Education: critical Perpectives. London: Routledge.
Beck,U. 1999. What is Globalization? Cambridge: Polity Press.
Scholte,J.A. (2000). Globalization: A critical introduction. London: Palgrave.
1.1 Teacher as an innovator demonstrates evidence of keeping current with recent research and significant literature. He/She is involved in organizations and projects, particularly leadership roles.
1.2 He/She also implement an integrated curriculum, restructuring the learning environment through the transparent and informational use of information and communication technology. The teacher consistently works with colleagues in the
school, ensuring ICT programs are integrated across the curriculum areas and year levels. The teacher critically reflects upon ICT skills and functional knowledge and actively addresses social, legal and ethical issue in relation to learning technologies. The teacher is actively involved in school planning and utilizes the school community to actively design ICT learning environments.
1.3 The innovator also make references and recommendations indicating excellent performance and potential for success. He/she will develop and continue to refine a well-reasoned educational philosophy that includes receptivity to new ideas. He/she also expresses strong commitment to one or more educational values.
1.4 An innovator also instigate change in small ways, collaborating with other staff, working on joint projects. He/She changes strategies, techniques, texts and materials when better ones are found and/or when existing ones no longer provide a substantive learning experience for her students. This teacher also employs a combination of lecture-discussion, simulation, service learning, cooperative learning, visual media, role-playing, guest speakers and debates and whatever is age and grade appropriate in order to accommodate diverse learning styles and to present the subject from different angles to facilitate insights and connections. This teacher values and uses students’ ideas about how to enhance their own learning.
1.5 An innovator continues to develop, to seek evidence of best practice, to take on board innovation, and to keep up-to-date all the time. For the teacher this means updating their subject knowledge as well as their skills and knowledge of new approaches to teaching, managing and planning.
2.1 A teacher is a marvelous entity and no tool has been able to replace it as yet. The teacher has been rightly called ‘nation-builder’ because he holds the remedy for problems like illiteracy, population explosion, poverty, employment, erosion of values etc. Society in general and parents in particular continue to have a blind faith in the teacher.
3.0 Knowledge Disseminator
3.1 The teacher is a knowledge and skill disseminator and he/she disseminates concepts, principles, guidelines and rules of the thumb, essential facts and essential skills. There are several tasks that the teacher undertakes as a knowledge and skills disseminator.
- exudes enthusiasm in the way he gets attention of his student all the time and this facilitates learning.
- Focuses attention to important areas of the subject and areas that are likely to be problematic to comprehend;
- Set objectives for learning task
- Checks prior learning
- Tries to make learning meaningful and memorable
- Facilitates encoding/recall of information so that the student is able to retrieve when this is needed
- Assesses learning
3.2 The teacher facilitates encoding/recall of information so that the student is able to retrieve it when this is needed. One way is through the use of mnemonics. The idea behind mnemonics is to inject sense into apparently senseless material.
3.3 Another way of helping the student learn is to get the students to go beyond ‘what is it?’ to think about “how and why’ to relate the new information to his existing knowledge and to use the new information as often as possible.
4.0 Interpersonal relationship agent
4.1 The teacher fosters relationships with school colleagues, parents, and agencies in the larger community to support students’ learning and well-being.
4.2 The teacher uses knowledge of effective verbal, nonverbal, and media communication techniques to foster active inquiry, collaboration and supportive interaction in the classroom.
4.3 The teacher possesses communication skills such as:
- builds and maintain rapport
- uses active listening skills
- possess an awareness of individual’s needs and anxieties
- handles confrontation
- offers constructive criticism and suggestions
- accepts varying teaching styles, value systems and levels of autonomy.
4.4 The most effective interpersonal relationship agent should possess the following characteristics:
5.0 Management of Change
5.1 Change is inevitable in education and it is a process that involves learning. As an educator/teacher, one has to be able to understand the social, organizational and political identities and interests of those involved; focusing on what really matters instead of getting caught up in peripheral issues; assessing the agendas of all concerned
5.2 In managing change, the following suggestions may guide the process:
- Pay attention to the context. Whether acting as a change agent in an organizational or with individual students, understanding the context is critical to success. Both organizations and individuals are shaped by factors that it is important to address the process of change. Individual learners have norms and values that will influence the direction of change.
- Be prepared to be proactive. Underlying the managing aspect, one has to be able to initiate the change process even though fulfilling this role may raise questions about the ethics of facilitating change including use of power in giving students tools they can use in their lives.
- Attend to learning. Since learning and change are interconnected, the teacher can assist those who are undergoing the change process in understanding the different kinds of learning as well as the learning cycle of the change process. In managing change, the teacher should allow for periods of reflection to incorporate and/or practice new ways of thinking.
- Build in action. Any change will not be complete unless it involves action. Taking action related to a new mental concept or to organizational change will increase flow of information surrounding it and allow those involved to test it out, receive reaction to it, and involve others in learning about it. Action will provide the proof that the change has occurred.
6.0 Globalization and Education
6.1 The process whereby political, social, economic and cultural relations increasingly take on a global scale, and which has profound consequences for individuals’ local experiences and everyday lives.
6.2 It refers to ‘a process of removing government- imposed restrictions on movements between countries in order to create an open, borderless world economy. Globalization is also being defined as a process which embodies a transformation in the spatial organization of social relations and transactions- assessed in terms of their extensity, intensity, velocity and impact-generating transcontinental or inter-regional flows and networks of activity.
6.3 Globalization has impacted upon the nature of the agencies that ‘school’ children, and students. At a glance, it would seem that national governments still have considerable freedom to intervene in the education systems.
6.4 Globalization has found expression in some direct ways such as the de-localization of schooling. Since the 1980s, there has been a degree of parental choice within state schooling. It has been possible to choose which schools to apply to both primary and secondary levels.
6.5 To these developments must be added changes in educational technology-especially the use of the internet and other computer forms and the growth of distance learning. These involved highly individualized forms of learning and may not lead to any additional interaction with neighbors or with agencies. They allow people from different parts of the world to engage in the same program –and student contact can be across great physical distance.
6.6 As the educational systems becomes more marketized, colleges, schools and non-formal education agencies seeks to build relationships based more on viewing learners as customers rather than participants. The main role of the teacher-turned-classroom manager is to legitimate through mandated subject matter and educational practices a market-based conception of the learner as simply a consumer of information.