Theories of Teaching and Learning and their Impact on the Classroom Environment
Although there are many theories of teaching and learning, this essay will be focusing primarily on professionalism, cognition and language, cognitive views of learning and behaviourism, and how they individually and collectively impact the classroom environment.
A professional teacher encompasses essential characteristics to teach at their highest level. They continue to learn throughout their teaching careers and constantly assess themselves and their students. Professionals also have the ability to make decisions in ill defined situations (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010, p. 5) , showing their knowledge and understanding of their students, teaching and the teaching process. Being able to represent topics to students in a way students will understand, and have an understanding of why a topic may be hard or easy for students to comprehend, is an essential skill any teacher needs to support their students. This is known as pedagogical knowledge.
General pedagogical knowledge, on the other hand, refers to an understand of principles of instruction and classroom management, moving beyond individual topics or subject matter alone, and involving the classroom as a whole. A professional teacher will will be highly aware of of how this knowledge relates to, and how to use it effectively, in a classroom situation. Saying a professional teachers impact on the classroom is positive would be an understatement. By incorporating the essential methods outlined above, teachers have a more accurate understanding of how to adapt to a variety of situations that arise in the classroom, and, how to incorporate different learning methods when required.
To further expand on the concept of incorporating different learning methods, a comprehension of the development of cognition and language is essential. The way students think about the world they live depends on their maturity and perhaps even more significantly on their experiences (Eggen & Kauchak, 2010. p. 20) . This is all connected to development, and the three factors affecting development, namely, experience, learning and maturation. It is why younger students don't comprehend to the extent of older students', or why through experience, a student may know more than his or her peers. It is referred to as cognitive development. When the human brain and cognitive development are explored we can see why maturation is so important to a students' learning and understanding.
To understand cognitive development more accurately, a deeper and explanation of how the brain deals with provided stimuli, and also why maturation has such an impact on learning is needed. The brain contains neurons that are made up of dendrites and axons. Dendrites are a part of neurons that receive messages from other neurons, these make up the learning capabilities of the brain. Axons are components of neurons that transmit outgoing messages to...