After looking at the NSW Department of Education and Training: Quality Teaching in Public Schools adn the NSW Institute of Teachers Professional Teaching Standards Element 5, Aspect 5.1.2 Establish supporting learning environments where students feel safe to risk full participation and Aspect 5.1.3 Demonstrate strategies to create a positive evironment supporting student effort and learning, I drew my attention to the way my colleague teacher teachers and how the three dimensions of pedagogy impact on her way of teaching. The three dimensions of pedagogy are;
- Intellectual Quality: refers to producing high levels of intellectual thinking. Teachers must ensure that they treat knowledge as a basis for setting challenging work that requires a deeper understanding and knowledge to problem-solve and engage in higher-order thinking through connections between ideas.
- Quality learning environment: refers to a positive environment which offers high support for learning. Teachers have high expectations that their students will achieve good results in their on-task ability, student engagement and quality of work.
- Significance: Teachers make meaningful and engaging learning experiences. Teachers recognise that learning becomes clear when teachers link work to out of school contexts so that learning becomes important to students. (NSW Dept. of Education and Training, 2003)
The Quality Teaching standards provides a framework in which teachers should operate in. The reason these standards were developed was so that across school and classrooms teachers’ quality of pedagogical practices were different (NSW Dept. of Education and Training, 2003). This is only natural as pedagogy refers to how things are taught, not what is taught (as the content is clearly outlined in NSW syllabus).
In my classroom my colleague teacher ensures that students are constantly being challenged, this is demonstrated through her high order questions during class discussions and also during group work. Students are grouped for maths and literacy into ability groups so that she can set tasks to challenge each student to their full potential, according to their ability group. My colleague teacher always models the quality of work that she expects. She mentioned that this is so important because on the rare occasion that she doesn’t, she notices a huge difference in their quality of work, their formatting such as not starting at the left hand side of the page, grammar and also their intellectual thinking is poor. The feel of the classroom is definitely positive. There is lots of praise in the classroom and students feel very comfortable to ask questions which help to deepen their knowledge. The teacher doesn’t move on to another task unless it is fully completed to a certain standard of quality. During class discussions she always refers to examples where their learning is applicable. This has obviously made an impression on me as during a maths lesson on time I was delivering I asked them question of where they use times and referred to the use of stop watches in their cross country carnival they had the day before.
I believe this quality framework of pedagogy is so important to ensure that the integrity and quality of the teaching profession is uniform across classrooms and schools. The way in which a teacher teaches has a dramatic impact on their quality of achieving learning outcomes. As teachers we are role models for demonstrating what a high level of quality in learning looks like, therefore the Quality Teaching standards of pedagogy sets the bar for teachers and consequently students.
To find out more about NSW Quality Teaching and pedagogy click on the link below;
New South Wales Department of Education and Training ( 2003). Quality Teaching in Public Schools:Discussion Paper, cited in Book of Readings: Effective Teaching and Professional Practice 2011.