CfE and PYP both promote student centred learning, with them both promoting a dual approach rom both teachers and pupils to expand upon learning, with pupils hopefully leading discussions which would further the work into other curricular areas. They also promote the idea that learners should not just be taught subject knowledge, but that they should also promote understanding and consolidation of this knowledge through different contexts for learning. This coincides with the shared goal of promoting inquisitive learners and also lifelong learners. They promote that children should learn outside of the classroom and explore subject content outside of the curriculum rather than following it to a tee. This is shown through CfE’s Experience and Outcomes as these are mainly guidelines on what children should be learning, but are left open to interpretation of the median, content and subject content through which they gain these experiences. Ambitions and attainment of children are also raised through both approaches as they make content within the curriculum more relevant to the pupils and the world around them, promoting a sense of personal connection to the learning that they are undertaking.
Differences in the two approaches is that the PYP curriculum has a more blended approach, with many subject areas being joined together and interdisciplinarity learning being more commonplace than in CfE, where there are provisions made however these are up to teacher directives as to what learning is interdisciplinary. PYP also focuses on teaching a second language from the age of 7, however from my own experience in schools both as a teacher and as a learner I have seen that this was not as heavily focused upon in terms of learning a language rather than learning key phrases and conversation pieces.
These fit into my own personal philosophy for teaching as I believe that education should be more student led to promote an interest in their learning, as through this it is almost certain that work ethic and success will improve as they see a genuine benefit to their work. Making work more appropriate to their personal contexts as well could also help the pupils to see how they can improve their lives and the lives of those around them, a key part of my teaching as I want to improve students self esteem and their view of what they can achieve.
International Baccalaureate (IB) was created with the aim of developing intercultural understanding and respect. It helps people cross the cognitive and physical barriers of language, country and culture. These barriers are crossed in aid of developing interpersonal skills which promote cohesion between learners and allows overall character development, which leads to passionate life long learners that find the methods through which you learn just as important as the curriculum you are taught. IB also allows for those involved in the program to build confidence to achieve goals through a range of learning contexts, meaning that learning takes place outside of the classroom as well as inside of it. This once again aids in character development and teaches those involved how to thrive in a deeply complex world.
This links with my own beliefs about education through the belief that it develops a sense of cross community relations. As I am from Northern Ireland, cross community aspects have been heavily involved in my education as a method to remove the stigma and dogma around Protestantism and Catholicism. I believe that people are similar in many ways, however they choose to see what divides them rather than these similarities. In my teaching I would like to foster an outlook and approach that we should work towards cohesion rather than boundaries between learners. IB promotes this through its intercultural understanding and I hope this module will aid me further in this aim for my own teaching.
Being first year at university, the first semester was split in half between my academic responsibilities of attending classes and completing assignments and my social life, whether that be with the rugby team or forming new friendship groups. The cycle of trying to balance both of these aspects continued until mid November when assessments for both my Values and Working Together Modules began to loom. Like my A-Level Examinations, I applied more effort to my Academic responsibilities whilst saving my social life for the weekends. When these assessments came about however the Values: Self, Society and the Professions took up most of my time. This assessment made me realize how valuable a broad range of literature is in helping develop arguments cohesively whilst also providing depth. This has made me reflect on how I might better conduct myself during the second semester, with me now beginning to read outside of just the required reading in order to inform my viewpoints and practice in an academic and school setting. This has occurred as a result of me receiving a C1 for this assessment as one of the main critiques of my essay was whilst making my viewpoints and statements clear, I did not provide enough insight into these points which a wider array of reading surely would have benefited. The process of reflection isn’t merely an afterthought of wishing you had done something better, but is something that should be pondered and analysed in order to influence future elements in our academic lives and put into practice these changes. Reflection should be carried out after most tasks as nothing we ever do will be truly perfect, and reflection upon this will lead to a betterment of all aspects that are reflected upon, be it essays, professional practice or even everyday life, which leads to us benefiting not only ourselves but also the societies we live in.
What helps my learning?
>Discussing the topic with others.
- I can utilize this by meeting up with classmates in order to gain new perspectives and ideas for my work.
- I can utilize this by grouping similar topics together and create lists of key facts in order to skip out useless text.
- I can utilize these by making colour-code notes in order to see key information more clearly by assigning different aspects to colours e.g. green for statistics or figures.
- Create a revision timetable to include time balance for both a social life and academic studies in order to provide maximum efficiency.
What hinders my learning?
- Study in a quiet place e.g. library away from friends but close to others in course.
- Put phone in another room or give to someone.
- I can combat this by creating a comprehensive revision timetable with breaks and social time alongside balanced study periods.
- I can work against this by getting myself up at set times in order to get the work out of the way – motivate myself to get up at these times.
>Long, copious notes
- Review notes throughout the year and re-do them until only one page long.
Many children grow up without the distinct privileges that I had as a child; a stable home environment, stable friendship groups, good schooling and many more. I have always strived to help and touch people’s lives throughout my own life and I see becoming a Primary School Teacher as the perfect way of being able to have a real and lasting impact upon people’s lives. I was impacted by my Primary 7 level teachers (namely Mr Thompson and Mr Philips) who were an absolute inspiration both in their attitudes towards the pupils and their teaching abilities. They showed fairness, authoritativeness, calmness and good composure, whilst also never deviating from total and unconditional positive regard towards their pupils. Throughout the lectures or the telling offs, I never once felt like they were no longer on my side. I hope to imbue these same qualities into my teaching career in order to help improve and support the academic lives of my pupils.