The basic education classes for a teaching degree are designed to help students understand the nature of the modern classroom. These classes teach students the fundamentals of classroom management; the basic methods of instruction that work with different student achievement and maturity levels; and many other essential skills for material comprehension and robust instruction in a standards-based education industry. For those students who are just beginning their degree in education, it’s a good idea to review these classes and why they are so important to success both in the classroom and during curriculum planning sessions elsewhere.
Almost all education programs require that their students take a course in classroom management. Ask any teacher with a bit of practical experience in the classroom, and they’ll all agree: Classroom management is absolutely the key to making sure that students understand the material and know how to use it on class tests, standardized tests, and in practical settings. Without classroom management, struggling students are left behind, advanced students are disregarded, and teachers are highly ineffective at conveying even the most basic concepts.
Teaching is not the same at every grade level, and that’s due to the accelerated pace of psychological development that students are undergoing between kindergarten and their final year of high school. Teachers need to know how this development occurs, which stages will face them in each grade level, and how they’ll accommodate psychological factors and developments as they plan their lessons. Most schools require at least three credits in childhood psychology, though many schools are increasing the requirement to six credits and asking that new teacher study adolescent psychology as a standalone effort.
Methods of Instruction
Between three and nine credits of a teacher education program will focus on methods of instruction. This is a very broad area that will typically be customized to a teacher’s major, whether it’s elementary, middle school, or secondary education. As part of their “methods” class, teachers will learn new ways of conveying advanced concepts in more basic terms. They will also learn how to accommodate IEPs in their instructional methods, and how to customize their teaching style to students at various levels of ability and comprehension. This class is often taken alongside classroom management, since the two are often very closely related when it comes to teaching effectively.
SMART Boards, iPads, projectors, and many other digital tools, have all become staples in the modern classroom. While most new teachers know how to use Mac and Windows computers, and typically understand how to use a smartphone, they usually don’t know how to use the common hardware and software tools that dominate today’s classrooms. These skills are usually taught in one or two classes during a teacher education program, with students required to gain hands-on experience with both hardware and software. They’ll often crate unique presentations and show how they would integrate these high-tech tools into an actual lesson that they would teach their students.
There’s Much More: Teacher Education is Extensive
These four components represent the most common areas covered in a teacher education program, but they’re not the only ones. Today’s new teachers are treated to rigorous education requirements that focus on content, classroom management ,curriculum, educational policy, leadership, and much more. These basic education classes for a teaching degree, however, remain the fundamentals for good teaching and student accommodation.