World Teachers’ Day 2012

5 Oct

“Take a stand for Teachers” is the 2012 slogan for World Teachers’ Day.

UNESCO calls on everyone to consider undertaking a special celebration for World Teachers’ Day:  “Teachers… ultimately determine our collective ability to innovate, to invent, to find solutions for tomorrow. Nothing will ever replace a good teacher. Nothing is more important than supporting them.”

On the UNESCO page there is another statement I liked very much:

Teachers are among the many factors that keep children in school and influence learning. They help students think critically, process information from several sources, work cooperatively, tackle problems and make informed choices. 

Isn’t this the essence of good quality education? Making informed choices outlines well the other highlighted skills: thinking, processing, cooperating and problem-solving.  Emphasizing these skills leads to deep and meaningful learning. Building a cooperative learning environment where students can practice choosing empowers them to think and share, and also helps students to understand how learning is an individual process.

Please note how teachers are rightfully recognized as one of the many factors that keep students in school. We should always remember not to ask teachers produce miracles, because every teaching-learning situation is constructed from many different pieces.

Over time teachers are able to enhance the other pieces of learning,  especially when learning is viewed as a process, not as a product or performance.  Yet, too often it seems that teachers are expected to solve all the pieces of the puzzle at once. The teacher’s piece is important, because the star will not be there without the teacher – but other pieces are equally important. Each and every teacher in the world should know that they can choose how they teach: teacher centered vs. student centered way, viewing learning as a product vs. process, cooperatively vs. competitively, creating opportunities to practice choosing vs. expecting blind obedience, and so forth.   All these choices are available for teachers to use in any given system or while teaching any given curriculum.

These everyday pedagogical choices are made either instinctively or with awareness of making an active choice. Even deciding not to choose is a choice. My way of supporting teachers is twofold: to spread awareness about the fact that they can choose and then empower teachers to learn more about their choices.

We all as parents and teachers are trusted with great shared responsibility: to help next generation achieve their full potential. So, supporting teachers in their important profession should be an easy choice.

What can you do to support a teacher today?

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7 Responses to “World Teachers’ Day 2012”

  1. Raunak October 5, 2012 at 9:17 am #

    Nice post, Nina! In India we celebrate Sept. 5th every year as Teacher’s day! It is quite an event in most schools. Students bring flowers for their teachers, make greeting cards for them and show their gratitude.
    In the Indian culture and mythology, teacher or “Guru” is given the same respect that is given to God.
    Our mythology is filled with incredible stories depicting students’ gratitude and faithfulness to one’s teacher.

    • Nina October 5, 2012 at 9:31 am #

      Many cultures have their own celebrations for teachers, which is good. Ongoing support and acknowledging the fact that we are together creating a better future for our students seems to be sometimes missing from public discussions.

  2. Loving Language October 6, 2012 at 9:48 am #

    Thank you for following my blog, and thank you for such a good post. Teachers have made me what I am today. I couldn’t know how to work or what I could accomplish without teachers.

    I try to support my kids’ teachers. I have taught at various institutions of higher learning. I have my own philosophy about teaching and learning. I understand, though, that my kids’ teachers do not necessarily follow them. So I try to help by not interfering. I encourage my children to respect their teachers and to learn as much as they can–whether they like the teacher or not. I try to help my kids’ teachers by teaching my kids how to take responsibility for their learning.

    When my kids were in a Russian class, one of the dads was Tatar. He told me a great Tatar expression that he said to the Russian teacher: “Give back the bones.” That means that you give the child to the teacher and he takes the best parts to do with as he wants. It’s a saying of respect to the teacher, that you’re willing to give your child up completely to the teacher. I try to follow this.

    • Fatma khanim October 24, 2012 at 8:21 am #

      Эта восточная притча: “вот мой ребенок, что хочешь то и делай. Мясо твое, а кости мои”. Эта притча говорит о большом доверии к учителю.
      Но сейчас к сожалению таких учителей все меньше и меньше.

      • Nina October 24, 2012 at 10:29 am #

        Trust has been underrated for a long time! By empowering students to learn we can also teach about trust, because it lives in our actions and words.
        Thank you for your comment, and thanks to Google translate so that I can understand it 🙂

  3. Fatma Khanim Bunyatova October 25, 2012 at 5:00 am #

    Это возможно в среде конструктивного обучения . Обсуждая в командах(это элементы кооперативного обучения) понятие доверия они выносят свои взгляды на всеобщее обсуждение.. Вот и здесь при социализации этих мыслей и просходит разрушение личностного понятия и построение его новым общественным, более устойчивым понятием доверия.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. World Teachers' Day 2012 « NotesFromNina | Learning, Re-learning and Teaching in the 21st Century | Scoop.it - October 6, 2012

    […] Building a cooperative learning environment where students can practice choosing empowers them to think and share, and also helps students to understand how learning is an individual process. …  […]

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