The Learning Process
San Diego Figure Skating Communications
a non-profit educational organization
The Learning Process -
Table of Contents
Learning is a life long process. Most individuals do not consider the many factors that are involved in learning a new fact, task, or skill. The exception are those who are professional teachers, instructors, business trainers, and sports coaches.
The following materials are provided for anyone who feels they can benefit from acquiring the knowledge and expertise of people who have made it their profession to research and understand how we learn. These are the concepts presented in college classes.
In the public education system teachers are regulated by the State Board of Education. The majority of states require public school teachers to have earned a 4 year degree, usually in education with a major English, mathematics, science, or some other area like computers, foreign language, history, arts, music, or physical education. The courses a teacher takes to graduate determines the credential - elementary or secondary grades - a teacher is eligible to recieve. Credential requirements may vary from State to state,
Some states require an extra year of supervised practice teaching in a classroom to receive a teaching credntial. There are special credential requirements to be hired as a guidance counselor, Vice Principal, Principal, or superintendent of schools.
The classroom teacher is required to maintain a weekly set of daily lesson plans so, in the event of being absent, a substitute teacher can step in and conduct one or more days of classes to keep students on track to complete the work necessary to be current with the state mandated course requirements.
The profession of teaching
With a degree, a teacher is assumed to have the technical knowledge and be equipped with excellent communication skills. The ability to handle a group of 25 to 35 students is much an art as it is a science. Communicating with a group is much different than a relationship a teacher and student forms in a small groups (1 teacher to 5 students) environment or private instruction (1 teacher to 1 student).
The discussion of grading on a curve represents the reality of each individual student bringing a different set of abilities and background experiences that influences how they receive and effectively process the information.
The use of video projectors has become wide spread as the technology has improved and the cost has become affordable to have teachers trained to use computer software such as PowerPoint and http authoring tools.
Teachers in a classroom or an athletic environment, share the need to be a subject expert in their field. They also must have the skills to be an excellent communicator, disciplinarian, physiologist, and inspirational/motivational leader.
Selecting individuals for placement in different classrooms places an emphasis on a student's previous acadenic progress, classroom behavior, attention span, and a demonstration of being able to function as positive part of a group learning environment.
Students "at risk" are evaluated to determine if they have learning disabilities or qualify for "gifted" classes. The bulk of students fall in between so they are equally distributed among the available teachers.
Typically the regular classroom size ranges up to 35 students while the learning disability, special education, and gifted/Advanced Placement classrooms have same number of students. There ia spport for the theory that students with learning disabilities need extra attention in reading, math, speech and other specialists who consult with the classroom teacher. These assistance may be in the form of pull out or in class tutoring. The gifted students are also thought to need more attention to challenge them to achieve their full potential.
The regular classroom consists of a range of students whose learning skills can be plotted as a bell curve, This means that for some students, the pace is a little faster than they can handle without an intervention of a classroom assistant to provide extra help to bring them up to speed with their other classmates.
A small percentage of the students on the high part of the bell curve acquire the materials quickly allowing the teacher to assign them extra credit assignments and or to tudor classmates who need extra help.
The competive factor in determining class status
The competition to be selected for the academic gifted program or Advanced Placement Classes (APC) is as stiff as the selection process required of students to make the junior and varsity football, basketball, baseball, and track teams. Occasionally there are male and females students who are able to compete successfully in both academic and athletic high school events.
Unfortunately young students love to classify different groups and call them demeaning names such as "dumb bells" or "nerds". Young boys generally prefer to rank their place in the school's social structure by their athletic, not by their academic abilities. Many young girls prefer not to be identified as being "brainy" as they feel this turns off boys who they are striving to attract attention.
The following information and internet links have been gleaned from public institutions and private athletic organization/associations that have a web presence and sponsor team and individual sports programs:
Ice Skating Disciplines
Psychology of Sports
Learning Table of Contents
Developing A Training Plan
The Sports Environment
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