On the Road to Effective Teaching: A Pedagogical TripTik for Student Teachers

By Pinheiro, Victor E. D. | Strategies: A Journal for Physical and Sport Educators, July-August 2013 | Go to article overview

On the Road to Effective Teaching: A Pedagogical TripTik for Student Teachers


Pinheiro, Victor E. D., Strategies: A Journal for Physical and Sport Educators


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Even though student teachers have learned content and pedagogy during their formative years, occasionally they become frustrated when attempting to transfer conceptual ideas to a real classroom situation. According to research, presenting both declarative and procedural knowledge can be challenging in domain-specific fields (Chi, Glaser, & Farr, 1988; Ericsson, 1996; Ericsson & Smith, 1994). Procedural knowledge has always differentiated the experts from the novices (Pinheiro, 1994) and must be developed through practice and experience (Ericsson, 1996).

During student teaching, the physical education classroom (gymnasium) often presents the new teacher with complex challenges (i.e., class size, discipline problems, ability levels, age levels [both mental and chronological], inattention spans, etc.) associated with teaching several classes each day. As a result, they often neglect the pedagogical skills necessary to address the various components needed in an effective teaching/learning situation.

This article presents 14 strategies for microteaching and student-teaching supervision that can enhance student teacher's pedagogical skills. Most of these strategies were gleaned from research on effective teaching (Graham, 1992; Moore, 1998; Reynolds, 1989). In addition, examples have been provided to assist with these applications. By providing a Pedagogical TripTik, many of these common concerns (i.e., related to self-esteem/efficacy, maintaining discipline, providing instructional feedback, assessing and evaluating, etc.) can be eliminated (Hynes-Dusel, 1999).

Therefore, this article was designed with pedagogical skills and examples based on the author's microteaching experiences and student-teaching supervision.

Fourteen Strategies: The Critical Pedagogical Skills to be an Effective Teacher

1. Introductory Ceremony/Set Induction

There are many definitions for set induction (Hunter, 1994; Moore, 1998; Rink, 1998; Schuck, 1985), but they all address the same concept: "what you do at the outset of a lesson to get students' undivided attention, to arouse their interest, and to establish a conceptual framework for the information that follows" (Moore, 1998, p. 114).

Example. The emerging question is, "How do you build the interest of the students before the learning begins?" For instance, if you are teaching a unit on soccer, you could get a high school soccer star to demonstrate the technical and tactical aspects of the appropriate soccer skill, thus motivating and exciting students. And do not forget, students tend to mimic their teachers; in other words, if the teacher is excited about what they are about to teach, their students will also be excited.

2. Objectives

Clearly stating the objectives, which are observable and measurable, is one of the most important components of the teaching/ learning process (Moore, 1998). They represent the teacher's instructional intent: It is what is expected of the students; it is what the student should know, understand, and be able to do.

Example. "Today, we are going to learn and evaluate the critical elements in soccer, specifically the throw-in using a three-step approach."

3. Provide Clear, Brief Instruction

Try to keep instructions brief, short, and to the point (e.g., KISS principle: Keep It Simple Sam), and provide only relevant information needed to get students engaged without wasting time. Many physical education teachers spend too much time talking (at times overloading students with unnecessary information) and not enough time getting their students involved (Metzler, 1985; Siendentop, 1991).

Example. "First, I will explain the critical elements of the throw-in, then I will demonstrate it offering specific cues. Then, I will divide you into pairs and assign you a space to practice."

4. Show and Tell

Demonstration plays an important role in teaching physical education and forms a model for the learners to follow (Mosston & Ashworth, 1994).

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