Teaching is a noble profession and what a joy to see students hold our understanding in their eyes. In their success we find our own and so to them you give your all. Words are easier than bold actions. I believe teachers want the best for students and that is the reason for setting behavioral objectives to help learners achieve success in their three domains of learning.The relationship between student’s actual terminal behavior and pupil’s expected terminal behavior is an index of the success or failure of the lesson.

Difficult students challenge us especially when the learner is resistance to change. Why bother when you see students drop out of school. Drop outs feel they have no value when they see no supporting strength coming from others. After all, you were committed to teaching effectively. The blame is shifted on students who failed to do their part. I agree students’ have a personal responsibility to get involved in order to achieve great success. However, from my perspective, learners accomplishment depends on teachers leadership style. How can you tell the difference? Authoritative teachers make learners timid. They believe students can perform under the sanctions of punishment. They use their power to get favor and attention. The consequences on learners is usually devastating. For instance, when I was in secondary school, our chemistry teacher was firm, the kind who never tolerated nonsense. We were whipped for every wrong answers given during lesson. In African education system canning is used to control students and achieve discipline. It was awful especially when asked to balance chemical equations on the blackboard. As a result, I disliked science subjects.

On the other hand, we had a Biology teacher who stimulated the students to unusual efforts. He was able to make us winners. His class was devoid of tension. He considered our feelings and was patient to accommodate our inadequacies. Based on my teaching experience, I can go on and on to give vivid illustrations. Besides, current research studies have proved that a negative correlation exist between corporal punishment and maintaining discipline in schools. Comparatively, there are teachers who play the role of laissez-faire leadership role. A teacher with no authority inadvertently introduce lawlessness and lack of sense of direction.

Alternatively, there are teachers who give students a little push to learn and understand concepts. Like my Biology tutor, hilarious teachers laugh with students and give out encouragement when they make flimsy mistakes. Students are bound to hit rocks and thorns on their path to learning. But with a little pat on their back the barriers are like bouncers for launching forward. I believe learners can remain reactionary with no desire to initiate actions without serious pep-up from the teachers.

With this in mind, the sky is not their limit. At this point, three different things become apparent. These are:

1. Servant teacher leadership style

2. Maintaining quality response to students need

3. Give students correct motivation to boost their confidence.

The basis principle of teaching requires the three elements be adopted and given maximum attention in a teaching-learning environment.Students succes is greater when urged to persevere. I believe the result will be outstanding if they realise they can excel like their peers. Undoubtedly, teachers at all levels can make the teaching profession very attractive. Providing the right leadership style and a little prod is essential.

Above all, I think, no nation can rise above the quality level of its teachers. We need to always pep-up our students. The best teacher is liked and cheerful. Our students success is our success. If they accomplish their academic goals our eternal reward is guaranteed.

Science Learning in Preschool

Concepts are being acquired during the early years that serve as a foundation for more complex and abstract knowledge later on. Concepts such as counting, classifying, measurement and one-to-one correspondence are the basic concepts that are acquired during the pre-primary years. According to Piaget, the period of cognitive development can be divided into four stages. The period between two to seven is that of the preoperational stage. Although concepts are developing rapidly during this stage, children at this stage still have the inability to conserve or grasp the idea of reversibility and they have a tendency towards the idea of centration. Piaget’s view of the process of acquiring knowledge by children is that they construct their ideas and concepts through interactions with the environment. Vygotsky’s theory utilizes the concept of scaffolding and ZPD or the zone of proximal development which implies that learning takes place in stages and teachers are facilitators who help children progress from one stage to the next by helping them make connections in the various subject domains.

Inquiry-based approach are based on the practice of observing, predicting, questioning, investigating, collaborating, communicating, interpreting information and using tools to gather information. An inquiry-based science approach in the early childhood classroom facilitates the process of integrating knowledge and understanding from different areas to make coherence and sense of the young child’s rather disorganized attempts at understanding the larger concepts and ideas of scientific knowledge.


The children crowded around the table to learn more about the shells that the teacher had brought. Who knows what these are? Where can you find them? A couple of them raised their hands; ‘Seashells… At the beach’. The children took turns to look more closely at the shells and were given the magnifying glass to examine some features of the shells more closely. “Teacher, why are there so many lines on the shell?” “Why are there patterns on the shell?” “Why is this shell so shiny? What are those lumps in the shell?… These were some of the questions posed by the children. One of the conch shells was large enough for the children to place their ear over the opening of the shell to listen to the echoing ‘waves’. The children took turns to hold the conch shell close to their ear to listen to the ‘sea’.

“Alright class, let’s place the shells back on the table… “The teacher collected back the shells and placed them aside. She then takes out a printed display of several cards. “Now, can anyone tell me what similarities are there between this Garden Snail and the shells you have just seen?” she pointed to the garden snail picture. “I know I know… “Several hands shot up as the children volunteered their answers. “They have shells.” “Correct, Jason. The sea shells you just saw once had a living animal in it, such as a hermit crab.” “Some shells have 2 halves, like clams, mussels, scallops and oysters. The shiny shell you see here is mother-of-pearl,” as she lifts up one of the shells with a shiny inner surface. “Now, what other animals have shells?”

“I know… eggs have shells,” volunteers Janice.

Whether it’s a multinational company or a School, it requires a leader who knows his job. The one who understands the importance of responsibility and can take control over others. He should be capable enough to differentiate between the right and the wrong and make decisions accordingly. A leader of a school is also known as the principal who governs the entire school community including the teachers and the students. The principal of any school has got following responsibilities toward students.

The Vision: When a person takes responsibility to be the principal of a school, his first step is to set a vision for that school. Each and every person who is the part of that school should clearly know what their goal is and how they are going to achieve it. All of us know that teacher’s job in a school is to teach and students are supposed to learn from what they are being taught. But it’s not that easy as it sounds. The principal’s job is to manage everything and assign tasks to the faculty in such a way that it pulls the school towards its vision.

Policies: There are certain policies which everyone has to follow in a school. It is the leader who writes these policies. So, a principal should write these policies in such a way that it keeps a balance between the faculty and the students. Neither of the two will feel offended by any of the policies written. Following are a few policies which are required to be followed by students and faculty of a school –

– Dress code Policy
– Attendance Policy
– Use of cell phone policy
– Ragging policy
– Policy to prevent fights

Extracurricular activities: Studying various subjects at school is not the only key to success. Students should actively participate in various extra curricular activities as it helps the students in developing their overall personality. For example, Organizing inter-school competitions like dance competition, singing competition, debate competition, quiz competition, paper presentation, etc. Such competitions boost the moral of the students and prepare them to compete with others in the future. The school should have proper infrastructure for various sports like a basketball court, football ground, badminton court, etc..Sports play an important role in physical fitness of children, So it’s the responsibility of the school authority to consider sports in parallel to studies. School’s timetable should have a fixed period for games and students shall have complete freedom to choose the game of their interest.

School and community relationship: A good leader in a school should act like a community liaison. Community liaison is a person who builds a strong relationship between the organization and the people it serves, by communicating in such a manner that everyone listening is able to understand him. It is the duty of a school principal to inform the parents of each and every student about their child’s progress report.

Sometimes a leader has to take few steps which may not look good to us instantly, but are beneficial in the future. So, it becomes our duty to respect our leader’s decision and move on.

The concept of empathy is of great importance when you relate and interact with your students in the class. The better you understand them, the more you receive from them in return. This interpersonal intelligence, in the opinions of Howard Gardner, directly reverses many of the actions that your students are held during the school days.

Perhaps, you observed during your school years that there were teachers who could connect very quickly with students while others maintained a relationship with their students something more complicated. They were not connected with the students- with their emotions. These teachers were less empathetic.

Another aspect that should not be confused with the fact that- being an empathetic teacher has nothing to do with being a cool teacher or rolled teacher. This is not true at all. Empathy is something deeper sense to be “cool” or “rolled”. In fact, the teachers with good empathy can start a very good relationship with students.

Here are five simple but useful actions that can enhance empathy with your students:

    • Learning the names. Knowing your students’ name is important. Sometimes we find some teachers who, after several months, still do not know the name of he/his students or confuse them regularly. Teachers might complain that they have many students and that takes the time to know all the names. That is not true. In a few days, you can get them all if you really want to. There are lots of tricks to learn the names of the students. Avoid calling your students by their last name. It has been observed that a lot of the students hate to be called by their last name. There may be several exceptions and in such cases the students can be called by the last names. But calling a student by his surname may create a rift between you and the student due to excessive formality.
    • Have a good memory. Good memory is important for being empathetic to your students. Ask your students about the party weekend, congratulate them on the achievements, hear about their pets, show interest after an illness or accident. You will be surprised to see the happy faces of your students.
    • Maintain eye contact. At the beginning or end of class, students approach you to ask a question very often. At that time if you only keep your eyes on school supplies and neglect showing the visual contact the student who speaks, then you miss many things. If you look to your student during his question, you will be able to capture student’s emotion more and understand what he is asking and also what he cannot ask but whirling in his mind.
    • Listen rather than hear. Active listening is very crucial. HEAR is simply perceived sounds while LISTEN is to understand the speech. Listen to be empathetic.
  • Change the closed questions to open questions. One factor that can help you empathize with your students is the way you ask questions. When interacting with a student, there is a difference between asking if you are concerned or to ask why is concerned. While the first question is answered with a simple yes or no, the latter implies a reason to create an emotional bond between you and the student must take advantage of.

International teaching is growing more and more popular and the number of opportunities is increasing every week. When you choose to work internationally you give yourself the chance to work with some of the most respected schools in some of the most interesting and exotic locations all over the world! It might not be the most obvious career move but it’s definitely a rewarding one! And therefore definitely one to consider!

There are a number of respected organisations who specialise in the recruitment of teachers in international schools which are definitely worth getting in touch with. They help to guide teachers in finding exciting opportunities for qualified, skilled, English speaking teachers in a large number of international schools in a huge variety of countries.

Four years ago Gerry and his wife Jane managed to find a placement in Mauritius for the two of them meaning they could move away together. They loved working with other internationally travelling staff from all over the world and welcomed the change in lifestyle, spending a lot more of their free time outdoors enjoying the sun and beaches. A lovely change from the fantastic British weather I’m sure we’d all agree!

“We never realised the possibilities that were out there to develop our careers as well as to travel and see different countries and cultures – to live them rather than just pass through them” – Gerry

Last year the couple relocated once again, this time to Harrow International School in Bangkok, eager to start their next adventure. They took up the opportunity to replace the quiet relaxed Mauritius school for the busy bustling city of Bangkok and the chance to work in a much bigger more well-known school. They were given the options of over 6,000 international schools to work in before choosing Harrow and greatly appreciated the advice and help they had received from international teaching organisations.

International recruitment organisations face the challenge of matching teacher’s skills and experiences with reputable schools that support their career growth and offer them the lifestyle and location they wish for. They each work with a number of respected schools around the world and successfully place hundreds of teachers each year providing a personal and reliable service to both recruiters and teachers. If you’re part of a teaching couple like Gerry and Jane, they can also cater for you too as many schools have multiple openings. These organisations can easily hunt these down to provide you with easy access to possible opportunities allowing you to take up the challenge together. They take the stress out of job hunting which can be especially hard when looking internationally. It is extremely useful to have help throughout the whole process from people who know exactly what they’re doing in order to take away the stresses and worries that come with moving away to a new and unknown place.