The article covers a range of teaching strategies, including collaborative learning, flipped learning, and deep learning, and offers practical tips and advice for implementing these approaches in the classroom.
What is a pedagogy for teaching?
The term 'Pedagogy,' refers to the strategy of how educators teach, in practice and theory. Pedagogy is shaped by the teaching beliefs of a teacher and relates the interplay between culture and a variety of methods of teaching.
Pedagogy relates to the study of teaching strategies and how they influence students. A thoughtfully considered and effective pedagogy is crucial for helping students to learn more successfully and in helping them develop high-order thinking skills. Online education presents unique challenges and opportunities for educators, and a strong pedagogy is essential for ensuring that students can learn effectively through online learning. This may include the use of age-appropriate teaching strategies and materials, as well as an understanding of the stages of child development and how these can affect learning.
In distance education, a strong pedagogy should also consider the needs and learning styles of students who are studying remotely. This may include the use of personalized learning plans and other approaches that allow students to study at their own pace and in a way that is most effective for them.
In this article, we are going to investigate the learning process and how it can be advanced using evidence-informed teaching strategies.
One popular pedagogy for teaching is Constructivist pedagogy, which emphasizes the importance of active learning and student engagement in the learning process. This approach emphasizes the idea that knowledge is constructed by the learner, rather than simply being transmitted by the teacher.
Constructivist pedagogy encourages students to ask questions, explore ideas, and collaborate with others in order to build their own understanding of the material. By using this approach, teachers can help students to develop critical thinking skills and become more independent learners.
How does pedagogy affect the learning process?
The most effective pedagogies encompass a range of teaching techniques, including a detailed guide for teachers, structured and whole-class group work, guided learning, assessment practice and individual activity. These pedagogies focus on improving higher-order thinking and meta-cognition and make good use of questioning and dialogue in doing so. At Structural Learning, we try to steer away from teaching fads such as learning styles (it was once thought that children should be labelled a visual learner, a kinaesthetic learner or an aural learner).
Whatever learning environment you are operating in, it's good practice to utilise the research that is available to us. We all share the same goal in enhancing the learning experience of children. Our focus has always been on developing deep learning experiences. This involves unpicking the learning process and designing effective teaching strategies that really get children thinking.
Pedagogy plays a crucial role in determining the learning outcomes of students. A well-designed pedagogical approach can foster critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and creativity among students. On the other hand, a poor pedagogical approach can lead to disengagement, boredom, and lack of motivation among students. Therefore, it is important for educators to understand the impact of pedagogy on the learning process and to continuously improve their teaching methods to ensure positive learning outcomes for their students.
Perhaps the learning environment sometimes restricts our ability to embrace what we know is the best teaching method. Schools are always pushing for time and busy timetables require organised classrooms that cannot always deviate or act spontaneously. We create learning resources that support active learning in the classroom.
The universal thinking framework enables teachers to unpick learning tasks and carefully design learning strategies that scaffold complex classroom tasks. This type of pedagogical approach gets to the heart of student thinking. Deep learning comes from deep thinking. If the student is not engaged mentally, then they probably will not be able to understand the lesson content.
A pedagogical approach to learning emphasizes the importance of creating a supportive and engaging learning environment that is conducive to student success.
Pedagogy is also an important consideration in adult education. Unlike traditional education, which is often focused on the acquisition of knowledge and skills, adult education is typically focused on helping adults develop new competencies, learn new skills, and gain knowledge that is relevant to their current or future careers.
In adult education, pedagogy is often focused on creating a supportive and engaging learning environment that is conducive to the unique needs of adult learners. This may include the use of interactive and experiential learning activities, as well as the incorporation of real-world examples and case studies that are relevant to the learners' experiences and interests.
Access to education is also an important consideration, as many adults may face challenges in accessing learning opportunities due to work, family, and other commitments. A strong pedagogy for adult education should take into account these challenges and should strive to make education as accessible as possible to adult learners.
How do we advance the pedagogy of teaching?
The Structural Learning community is very much a global community. Different school systems have different approaches to pedagogy, such as project-based learning or direct instruction. Many schools have moved away from collaborative learning whilst others see this as an essential part of the educational experience. Whatever learning environment you are operating in, investing in the development of sound classroom pedagogy is essential.
The Rosenshine principles of instruction provided schools with a list of modern teaching methods that were all evidence-based. These aspects of teaching provided classroom practitioners with solid guidance. His practices of teaching were well received within the profession of teaching, as they weren't prescriptive. Every teaching situation could utilise these impactful approaches to instructional delivery. Traditional learning practices were quite rightly questioned with the release of this paper. Many inspectors favoured methods of teaching that were simply not well researched.
With the rise of organisations such as the Education Endowment Foundation, teachers can now make better decisions about the practices of teaching. Researchers such as John Hattie have been searching for an impactful approach that leads to lasting change. There will never be one single approach that works across all subjects and year groups. School success is built on a repertoire of solid teaching and learning practice. It's not just about effective content delivery.
To develop student understanding at a greater depth, we need to provide opportunities for learners to really grapple with the problem at hand. Our block building pedagogy enables students to piece together the educational content they are studying. By organising their ideas out in public view, we are building formative assessments throughout the learning process. This method of teaching gives learners more control over their learning. These types of modern teaching methods need to be balanced with teacher explanations. Providing time and space for critical thinking is good practice but they need to be guided by an expert with sound subject knowledge.
Demagogy for the Modern Classroom
Pedagogy for the modern classroom should be focused on creating a supportive and engaging learning environment that is conducive to student success. This may include the use of collaborative learning strategies and educational activities, such as group work and team-based projects, to encourage students to work together and support each other's learning.
Another key aspect of pedagogy for the modern classroom is the use of flipped learning, in which traditional instructional methods are reversed, with students gaining foundational knowledge outside of class and then applying that knowledge in class through hands-on activities and problem-solving. This approach can help to engage students and to make learning more interactive and relevant to their lives.
Additionally, pedagogy for the modern classroom should be focused on fostering deep learning, in which students develop a deep understanding of key concepts and ideas, rather than just memorizing facts and information. This can be accomplished through the use of questioning and dialogue, as well as hands-on, experiential learning activities that encourage critical thinking and reflection.
Different perspectives of Pedagogy: Social Pedagogy
Social pedagogy provides a holistic way of dealing with children and their families in ways that help their growth, well-being, and education. Social pedagogy indicates that education is critical to the well-being and development of students. Therefore, in the broadest sense, these types of pedagogical practices are understood as forms of practice that support social learning and development in one’s life. By nature, students are social persons.
But, they also need the education to express themselves effectively. Depending upon different cultural and social backgrounds, how public education is provided can differ from one country to the other country.
Examples of Social Pedagogy: An example of social pedagogy is, how countries are using social education to highlight the significance of things like kindness and empathy. Practitioners knowledge play a major role in using the right materials for students to explore at the right time in their development.
Social pedagogy refers to the education system that deals with common social issues related to human needs, such as social inequality, its reasons and consequences for the residential children, who are a group of vulnerable children living with a group of other children looked after by the hired workers who are hired to work on a shift basis and live in the residential setting.
It is a teaching philosophy that persuades a classroom teacher to encourage learners to critique structures of oppression and power. A Brazilian educator and philosopher, Paulo Freire, is regarded as one of the founders of critical pedagogy. Freire believed that as the first step towards social change and liberation, oppressed people need to become critically conscious. He mentioned that the learners are not actively participating in their learning, in problem-solving or interacting; but they are mainly engaged in receiving, memorising, and repeating information.
Hence, Critical pedagogy is also considered progressive and even radical by some policy makers because it critiques power structures that are frequently taken for granted. Critical teaching aims to encourage students to challenge their ideas and thoughts, their practices, and their beliefs, to gain a deeper understanding and think critically.
Examples of Critical Pedagogy: Educators can incorporate critical pedagogy by using audio-visual material to encourage students to look at the causes and deeper meaning of everything from politics to war and religion; or by analysing and exploring power issues and relationships in their families. Students may also look for statements that are biased toward media and popular culture.
Critical teaching frequently depends upon the students' approach towards teaching, in which teachers uncover different strengths of students’ backgrounds, and nurture them to assure that students are confident to express their feelings, and accomplish their goals.
Cultural Responsive Pedagogy
Culturally responsive teaching considers cultural contexts. To apply culturally responsive teaching, teachers make changes in their pedagogical practice, after child observation, to suit the cultural needs of a child belonging to any specific cultural background. Sometimes the educational institute makes changes in its policies and procedures to facilitate more community participation.
Example of Culturally Responsive Pedagogy: A culturally responsive teaching approach encourages and takes into consideration diverse races, beliefs, ethnicities, and the background of students. The cultural responsiveness of a cooking lesson would be to provide access to video pedagogy to provide knowledge about the cultural cuisines in the course of the study. Cultural responsiveness of a political study would mean debates and analysis of a wide range of political topics, in various cultural contexts. In legal studies, it means to keep various cultural and religious beliefs and differences in view such as how different communities might view similar legal matters.
Proposed by the Greek philosopher, Socrates, the Socratic pedagogy mainly involves the dialogue between the instructor and students. The teacher would ask students probing questions and explore the underlying beliefs that shape the perceptions and views of the students. There are 3 steps of the Socratic Method:
- The teacher would provide an initial description or opinion;
- Then, the teacher would ask a question to raise an exception to that opinion or description;
- Provide a better opinion or description.
Socratic pedagogy includes a process in which learners can develop their psychological and social skills to become active members of a democratic society. Students get the support to challenge traditional concepts about knowledge, explore alternatives, and create educational knowledge using their experiential learning, ideas, and meaningful dialogues with others. Thus, the Socratic pedagogy curriculum will mostly include the anonymous peer review process, collaborative instructions, comparative context and thinking as learners explore established ideas with others to open their minds and develop a better understanding of concepts.
Example of Socratic pedagogy: Socratic pedagogy in Science or Mathematics can be seen when students look beyond the obvious to assess what and why a specific scientific or mathematical process is, and how is that applied in society. This type of discussion does not necessarily find a particular answer, but it raises new questions for the dialogue.
As an impact of traditional teaching of the past, most of the university students' class time was spent watching and listening to the professor lecturing. Also, in the previous or traditional forms of learning the learners worked individually on projects, and group work was discouraged. In current times, student-centered learning methods move the focus of activity from the instructor to the students.
Student-centered learning enables students to build knowledge, as opposed to passively receiving it, and facilitate deep learning. Student-centered learning focuses predominantly on what the learner needs to do for learning a new concept, rather than on the curriculum content or receiving the information from the teacher.
While living In a multicultural society, the three dimensions of personal, pedagogical and work – institutional are used together to acknowledge and respond to cultural disparities between different learners, and to celebrate different methods and styles of learning. For embracing such a technique, the educator must be ready to accept the diverse nature of the multicultural educational practice and build an equitable and comfortable learning space for all students.
Constructivist pedagogy is an educational theory that emphasizes the importance of student-centered learning. It focuses on engaging students in activities that enable them to construct their own knowledge and encourages them to actively participate in the learning process.
Constructivist pedagogy is based on the idea that students learn best when they are actively involved in constructing their own understanding of concepts and topics. It also emphasizes collaboration between teacher and student, as well as among students, in order to foster deeper levels of understanding. Constructivist pedagogy is based on the belief that each student has a unique set of skills and abilities, which can be developed through purposeful activities and meaningful reflection.
Moving teacher's pedagogy forward in your school
If your school is interested in exploring a new pedagogical approach you might be interested to have a look at our action research projects. The CPD program gives teachers the tools to document evidence of impact when trying out new teaching approaches. Whether it's a low-tech approach using a familiar teaching pedagogy or the utilisation of a new high-tech tool, the teacher's toolkit enables educators to make accurate judgements about the success of new instructional activities.
Primary and secondary schools have been utilising the process to build sustainable CPD opportunities that address all manner of teaching situations. This approach to the application of skills builds teacher confidence and advances career progression.