Teaching in a Secondary School

By Robert Griffin | Go to book overview

21
Planning

When prospective teachers think about teaching, about the last thing that comes to their minds is the planning aspect of the work -- the choice of what is going to happen in a class and why. Typically, people new to teaching envision a teacher "up in front," as they say, lecturing, leading discussions, monitoring group assignments or individual seatwork, and disciplining students. They might picture a teacher relating informally to students, conferencing with parents, exchanging ideas and making small talk with colleagues, or even grading papers. But planning? Sitting around deciding exactly what learning and growth among students to promote, what assignments to give, what classroom activities to use? No, that's not what usually pops into the heads of those just starting out in the profession. Or if it does, it is imagined as late night drudgery. It is understandable that people tend to see things that way because before we actually teach ourselves, our knowledge of teachers is gained primarily from encounters with them as students in their classes and from accounts of them in the popular media. As their students, we experience teachers' personalities and instructional style in the classroom, and that is what sticks with us when we think about what they do. As for media portrayals of teachers, planning, with its lack of dramatic appeal is not going to receive major play in a television movie of the week. Try to break up commercials with the new young dashing English teacher hunched over a table planning his classes and remote control devices will activate throughout America. Instead, show him in the classroom charming the at-first skeptical students, standing up valiantly to the dinosaurs in the administration, and turning the head of the shapely history teacher next door.

-211-

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Teaching in a Secondary School
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - Teaching as Work 5
  • 2 - The Self-Surpassing Classroom 11
  • Conclusion 19
  • 3 - Our Values Matter 21
  • 4 - A Focus on Studenting 27
  • 5 - Getting Students to Think for Themselves 31
  • SUMMING UP 40
  • 6 - What is a Good Student Like? 41
  • Conclusion 48
  • 7 - The Importance of Language 50
  • 8 - What Can a Good Student Do? 65
  • Conclusion 71
  • 9 - Teaching Values: The Early Years 72
  • Conclusion 78
  • 10 - What Can Get in the Way of Being a Good Student? 80
  • 11 - Curriculum 88
  • 12 - Becoming a Good Student in School 114
  • 13 - Discussions, Lectures, and Textbooks 124
  • 14 - Motivation 138
  • 15 - Style Counts 149
  • 16 - Advice to a Student on Achieving in School 156
  • 17 - Teaching Values: The Later Years 162
  • 18 - Thoughts on Discipline 181
  • 19 - Helping Students Become More Effective in School 191
  • 20 - Evaluation 200
  • 21 - Planning 211
  • 22 - Teaching and You 229
  • Acknowledgments 239
  • Endnotes 240
  • Index 247
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