In Indian tradition, schools are considered as a temple where a child starts his/her academic life. Education and values are inculcated in the children at school which remain with them throughout their life. Thus, all the stakeholders i.e. teachers, principals, students, parents etc. of a school play a very important role in the upbringing of a child and indirectly to the society. The most important role is played by a teacher as a stakeholder. Teaching as a profession is seen in the ancient scriptures of India, where the relationship between a guru (teacher) and shishya (student) is very pure and sacred. Students always pay gratitude to their teachers for their abundant knowledge.
In the present 21st century scenario, teachers are working as a catalyst for bringing societal change. It is a teacher who helps a child to shape his/her future and simultaneously the society. A teacher helps a child to grow morally, socially and follow all individuality. There are various facilities and courses which help a teacher to develop these exceptional teaching skills and attain several degrees, however experience and training plays a very important role in the same as well. As the societal needs are changing fast, thus a teacher needs to upskill themselves to maintain the place of catalyst. Most recent example to show the importance of upskilling and regular training has been seen in the Covid-19 situation in the teaching industry.
In the current situation, the traditional teaching-learning process is not very effective in fulfilling the needs of school, students, teachers and parents as well. The present time is demanding for some changes in the traditional teaching and learning process. To meet all the requirements of the stakeholders associated with the teaching learning process, it is essential for the teacher to upskill themselves. They have to start thinking and working as per the need or demand of the current and future times.
NEP 2020 has given a provision of 50 hours of mandatory continuous professional development for teachers. NEP 2020 has also focused on providing quality education which lays emphasis on developing good, thoughtful, well-rounded, and creative individuals. This will help a teacher to focus on the areas where they require training or upskilling. As we all are aware that no one is perfect, there is always some scope for improvement and NEP has helped by giving various areas where teachers should be skilled to ensure better learning for their students. Find online teacher training workshops here
Considering the present hybrid teaching and learning situation, a teacher requires upskilling for uplifting themselves, for good hold in online teaching learning process etc. Regardless of a teacher’s role and title, getting new knowledge, improving and growing mindsets, and skills must take place for everybody at all positions. The skills and knowledge previously possessed by instructors did not accommodate for uncertainties which the current times have presented before everyone. At present, all stakeholders need extensive training and strengthening to be prepared for uncertainties that could disrupt the teaching and learning process.
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Currently the level of education quality is a big concern for educators. Lack of upskilling and training could be one of the major reasons for low quality of teaching and poor student outcomes. Inadequate teacher training can be one of the main reasons for poor quality teaching and poor student outcomes. However, in addition to the lack of specific pedagogical training, another reason given for the poor performance of teachers is the lack of adequate training in their relevant subjects. In addition to "unskilled" and "low-skilled" teachers, there are also "poorly trained" teachers whose improper schooling can lead to poor understanding of the concepts to be taught.
According to a survey done by Social Science Research Centre, Institute of Education, University of London shows that it is not only one strategy or an intervention that is directly related to the impact on teacher’s performance; rather, the interventions comprised various combinations of strategies that were applied and evaluated as a package. Successful interventions in the studies that were rated as most robust and reliable involved multiple strategies.
The three most commonly used strategies were:
• Training workshops (long or short meetings, face-to-face or online, tutorials, workshops or conferences, often in teacher resource centers or a central school within a geographic group)
• Self-study (structured distance learning) materials to deepen technical knowledge or to prepare for written assignments or exams)
• In-class support (by a trainer or mentor who visits a student in their classroom and observes and comments on their teaching).
Above mentioned strategies can be followed in terms of - in-school support
(groups or pairs of schools met to discuss or share their learning, sometimes facilitated by a tutor or experienced colleague / facilitators and also through the school clusters
(group activities and peer learning through study circle meetings, sometimes facilitated by a tutor to work on specific modules).
We are living in the 21st century where few basic skills are critical thinking, technology, socio-emotional health, mentoring, collaboration, communication, assessing and analysing the information etc. There are various platforms which are supporting or helping teachers in their classroom teaching like online and interactive worksheets, various teaching aids, videos and presentations etc.
There is an urgent need for teachers to upskill themselves for the current scenario like technology, mental health, etc. Present generation of students are considered as Z- generation kids, they are very smart and quick when it comes to use of technology, thus a teacher who is teaching them will need to uplift them and acquire the new technology to reach their level and guide them.
Since everything is online, students and teachers are unable to move out, they are stuck within their-house, no outside activities, so mostly they feel anxious, restless etc. So to overcome such a situation, talking and counselling skills are very important.
Also read: Looking for a School Enhancement Program? ABEA offers best online workshops for teachers
When students are doing and spending most of their time online, there comes the need for guidance and mentoring by teachers and guardians to check what a student needs to observe on a website, which are the helpful websites for them etc.
Communication is another major thing which played a very important role during this pandemic. It also has phases like what to talk about, how to and most importantly when to do it.
Here are some key considerations for successful interventions or skills enhancement / training
• Online workshops for teachers must clearly aim to improve student learning, or enhance teacher experience, or provide certification. Interventions carried out with unclear objectives or results have difficulty in achieving success or effect, or may lead to failure.
• The success of teacher training workshops depends on a number of factors within the school, such as the school structure, if it allows discussions or peer learning to apply new learning and skills in the classroom to provide the greatest opportunity for improvement in performance.
• Online teacher development courses need to be consultative in nature. Information, resources, and capacity building from stakeholders, such as teachers, school principals, administrators, and community members, can provide necessary data to plan more effective training.
• Demands on time and resources must be balanced with their daily work, family and social responsibilities, especially for women, for whom the burden of care and training can be the most stressful. Barriers to classroom improvement need to be recognized, including developing a more learner-centered pedagogy and critical reflection. Sustainable change in professional practice occurs slowly.