If You Want to Be a Teacher, You Have to Know This (Part II)
By now I hope you’ve read the last article on the first five of ten inTASC standards you should know as an aspiring teacher. If not, go back and read it now.
Here, I will discuss five inTASC standards that will help you become a more effective teacher, if you follow them.
- Assessment. The teacher understands and applies various methods of assessment that encourage and support the growth of his or her students. Using this understanding, teachers can appropriately modify assessments to make them culturally or ethnically relevant or to allow the adequate testing of students with varying abilities in English and of students with individual needs. Ethical application of these assessment methods allows students to understand and reflect on their own growth and learning. Providing descriptive feedback on student progress encourages students to focus on areas of difficulty where appropriate.
- Planning for instruction. The teacher understands the curriculum goals and standards required of his or her students and appropriately uses knowledge of content areas and cross-disciplinary skills to plan learning that will allow each student to achieve these goals and standards. Effective teachers adapt and plan effective instruction that will allow learners of varying skill levels and at various levels of development to leverage their own strengths to achieve what is required of them. Applying this standard also involves the input of students’ family members, the community, and professionals both inside and outside education, to ensure the highest possible levels of classroom achievement.
- Instructional strategies. The teacher understands how to encourage students to use and develop a deep understanding of content and connections between content using a variety of instructional strategies. Allowing students to develop their critical thinking, problem-solving, and research abilities, and allowing them to perform learning tasks independently as well as with the teacher, are all applications of this standard. Teachers plan to accommodate students from diverse backgrounds and with a diverse range of abilities, incorporating and encouraging the use of various technologies that will support students in retrieving or assessing the required information. Teachers can also adapt exercises and materials to cope with new information received from students during their research, updating and improving their own knowledge base.
- Professional learning and ethical practice. The teacher understands the importance of ongoing personal reflection regarding teaching and lesson planning methods, personal and teaching goals, as well as continued striving for development. Applying Standard 9, teachers perform frequent self-evaluation, and encourage feedback from students, students’ families, and colleagues or supervisors. Teachers must see themselves as continual learners, always seeking new opportunities to further their knowledge, particularly of their content base.
- Leadership and collaboration. The teacher seeks out and assumes leadership roles that match his or her skills. Teachers who apply Standard 10 understand the importance of collaboration and demonstrate this understanding to their students. They take direct responsibility for the success of their learners, working with them to help them achieve their potential. And this collaborative spirit extends to the students’ families and community; when teachers actively seek opportunities for growth by engaging with other education professionals and accessing and providing support where required, the school as a whole is empowered to move forward in achieving the school’s mission and goals.
This completes the short series on knowing the inTASC standards. I hope this has helped you with your understanding on your journey to becoming a teacher. Good luck.