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Education World

Math Teaching Tip #1 – Remembering What It’s Like Not to Know

I had been to London a few times before, so I knew my way around pretty well. Nevertheless, I always carried a map. So I felt sure that I would not have any trouble finding my way to my appointment with a local education official-especially since he had given such good directions: “Take the Northern Line; get off at the Elephant and Castle; go straight out the door and cross to the other side of the road; go up the first street a couple hundred meters; our office is on the left, just before the park. You can’t miss it.”
That sounded pretty easy. I had ridden the Northern Line of the Underground dozens of times, although I had never gotten off at the Elephant and Castle. So I got off the Tube at the correct stop and went up the escalator, thinking to head straight out the door. That’s when my troubles began. When I got to the top of the escalator, there was not a door to go straight out from-there were five doors, all distributed around the circumference of a circular-shaped exit/entry area! The official hadn’t mentioned that. I had no idea which direction to exit. So much for “go straight out the door!”
But all was not lost. I had my trusty map, and I knew the name of the street I was headed for, so I just headed out the nearest door to look for the street sign. As I emerged, I discovered that the tube stop was a round island surrounded by several wide lanes of swirling traffic, with streets radiating out in several directions. The street signs in London are embedded in the walls of the buildings, and none of them could be seen from where I stood. (What is the practicality, I wondered, of street signs that are only visible once you’ve actually turned onto the street? Do they serve to offer reassurance to people who already know where they’re going?!)
It took a long time for me to wander around that circus (well, that is what they call it) until I finally found the right street. I finally arrived at my appointment somewhat late and rather perturbed. But the experience was not lost on me. The man had given me directions that described exactly what he did every day. But he failed to take into account that I had never been there before. And the fact that he did not remember what it was like to be there for the first time caused him to omit important information, which rendered his directions meaningless to me. They would only make sense to a person who had already been there! “You can’t miss it,” indeed.
It struck me as I left my appointment that this was a perfect metaphor for what often goes wrong with math education. I once heard a teacher introduce fractions to his class by pronouncing “numerator,” and “denominator,” writing them on the board, quizzing his pupils on the correct spelling of the words, and then verbally defining their meaning. While his presentation was technically correct, and was an accurate description of how he thought of fractions every day, the lesson was meaningless to many of his students because it provided no connection to physical or visual experience. The instructor had forgotten what it was like never to have seen or considered a picture of a fraction before, or to have divided an object or groups of objects into fractional parts. He had forgotten what it was like to not know about fractions. As a consequence, his instructions would make sense mainly to students who already knew about fractions; but the lesson would go right over the heads of other students, even when they’re diligently paying attention.
Fortunately, most teachers now know better than to present a fraction lesson like that-although that style of presentation is still pretty much the norm in algebra classes! To introduce fractions, it is more typical for the teacher to begin by drawing a circle on the blackboard, drawing vertical and horizontal diameters through it, shading three of the four resulting parts-and then proceed to tell the students that since there are four parts altogether, and three of them are shaded, we call this “three fourths.” A few teachers might consider this one illustration sufficient to define all fractions. But most teachers would provide several pictures of different fractions, and then ask volunteer students to name them properly. They then consider their introduction complete.
This type of presentation seems to many teachers to cover all the bases, so they are surprised and dismayed to discover later that a couple of their students still have no understanding of basic fractions whatsoever. Naturally, teachers feel a need to account for this “I taught it-but they didn’t learn …

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Education Learning

Online Teaching Jobs – Marshalling Your Credentials

Whether you’re looking for employment with an agency or institution or whether you’re setting up in your own business taking on online teaching jobs, experience counts. When you’re compiling your CV for an employer or to attract prospective students and when you’re evaluating your skill set for your own professional development, there are some key things to remember.
It should be obvious that you’ll need to demonstrate your teaching credentials. It’s common sense, really. It will include all your qualifications and all relevant experience, both paid and unpaid. Testimonials from satisfied students are a great bonus, if you have them. Wherever possible, potential employers or students should be able to verify your credentials.
However, although online teacher jobs are about teaching, they’re also about working online. It’s easy to underestimate the importance of this fact. Over the last decade, online learning has taken off. The best online teachers and tutors not only understand what the developments in the field are, they know how to use them to the advantage of learners.
In online teaching jobs today, you should have an appreciation of several dimensions of the work. On the one hand, you should be familiar with at least some of the key studies that have been done to evaluate the pros and cons of online learning v. conventional classroom teaching.
On the other, you should have a grasp of today’s educational technologies and their potential in your online teacher jobs. Of course this also means that you should also have competency in computing and the internet, so don’t forget to add that to your list of skills.
Depending on your subject and the kind of online work you’re aiming for, different skill levels are required. Delivering homework help via videocall may not require highly developed IT skills, but for other online teacher jobs your computer expertise may be more thoroughly tested. If the online teaching jobs you’re looking for are with established institutions, they may have IT departments to assist, but you may still be called upon to run a webinar or to devise online resources for your students.
The good news is that as online teacher jobs have entered the educational mainstream, so the educational establishments have responded. If you’re really serious about making a career in online teaching jobs, then qualifications in the online dimension of online learning could serve you well.
A rudimentary internet search will reveal a host of resources for teachers wanting to make the most of the internet in their online teacher jobs. There are courses you can take for free, and there are institutions offering courses that you can gain formal accreditation for.
If you want to have the edge when applying for online teaching jobs or recruiting students, it will help to be able to show that your competence is in delivering teaching online as well as being a good communicator with great subject knowledge. When compiling your CV or advertising for students, letting people know that you have a grip on all three of these aspects of online teaching is something to work on.…

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Education Policy

Online Teaching Jobs: A Few Tips for Success in Your Online Tutoring Job

The number of online teaching jobs has grown in recent years. An increasing number of students have turned to online tutoring as a way to help them strive in a tough academic environment. Online tutoring is proving to be an effective and convenient way to give help to those who need it.

If online tutoring sounds like a possible fit for you, or if you are presently tutoring someone now, here are a few tips to help you be more successful:

Help them catch up on any skills they may be missing, or help strengthen the ones that are weak. Doing this will not only get them up to speed, it can potentially make the whole learning and teaching process smoother and easier, which can ultimately ensure your success.

Help them get organized and teach them to stay organized by helping them improve on their organizational skills. This will help them stay focused, and can be a great benefit for them when studying alone.

Give extra instruction. Always give a little extra tips, tricks, and exercises to help them excel in other areas. If done right, you literally can watch your student accelerate their learning curve as they start to pick up things faster, retain information better, and become more well-rounded in their academic endeavors.

Tutoring can be a bit more strenuous out of the available online teaching jobs. Of course, the rewards can be just as if you implement the 3 strategies listed above, you will see even greater results.…

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Educational Supplies

What You Need To Know About Teaching Your Children At Home

Without a good education, your children may suffer in life. They’ll be stuck working a dead end job or living at home forever. In world of uncertain public and private school systems, what is a parent to do? Your best chance is through homeschooling. Here is a little advice that can help you with homeschooling your kids.

Understand that children work best when they have breaks now and then. If your children are not allowed breaks, they will be less excited to learn. When they can just sit down and do nothing, or run around the yard, they’ll reinvigorate themselves. This will benefit everyone.

Organize field trips with neighboring families who are homeschooling their kids. This is a great way for your children to meet other kids who are also home schooled. Through group rates, it can also be less expensive.

One of the major benefits of homeschooling is the ability to cater to your child’s specific learning needs. If your child needs to learn in a hands on way, you can make sure to incorporate a lot of that into your lesson plans. A homeschooling curriculum that is specially tailored to your child’s unique learning style will be of great benefit to your child.

Are you ready for the financial sacrifices that come from homeschooling? You may need to quit your line of work, which could set you back a lot. If you choose to do it, you need to think about the time away from accomplishing your daily chores around the house, and hiring services such as grocery delivery will cost you more.

When choosing to teach your children at home, it pays to be imaginative. Many homeschooling resources can be purchased, but if you put the effort into it, you can make many yourself. Look for inexpensive ways to create flash cards and recycle household items as craft supplies. Get the children involved in making them to make learning more fun.

Assign certain housework chores to your children, or hire some outside help. Learn to delegate and get the whole family involved in running the house. Between everyday household chores and attending to homeschooling your energy reserves will be taxed. Accept any help you can get when it is offered.

List all of the good things and all of the bad things about both public school and home school, then compare them. Use the list you came up with to make your lesson plans so you’re sure that your children are getting a better education than you thought they were in a public school setting. You will have essentially created a checklist of things to concentrate on and things to avoid. Reference is often to remember why you’re homeschooling.

The homeschooling process can sometimes make someone feel isolated. Local networking is invaluable to parents and kids that homeschool. Seek out support groups or networks in your area, or participate in discussion forums online. Having a group of contacts ensures diverse perspectives, different insights and an overall rewarding experience.

In today’s world, a good education is essential. A well rounded education ensures that your child has the knowledge to succeed in life. Homeschooling is one route to a great education. The tips in this article should help. Start homeschooling and watch your children grow.…