Future Educators https://www.futureeducators.org Helping America's Future Teachers Thu, 06 Feb 2020 23:08:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2 https://www.futureeducators.org/wp-content/uploads/future-educators-fav.png Future Educators https://www.futureeducators.org 32 32 Qualities of a Good Early Childhood Education Teacher https://www.futureeducators.org/qualities-of-a-good-early-childhood-education-teacher/ Thu, 06 Feb 2020 22:42:45 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=1481 Continue Reading]]> Early childhood education (ECE) teachers should be leaders and passionate. That’s according to current ECE teachers who were asked what qualities make for a good early childhood teacher. We also discovered that a teaching career focused on early childhood offers some special benefits.

About Early Childhood Education

Did you know that by a child’s third birthday he or she should be able to throw a ball, feed themselves and ride a tricycle? It’s easy to take these simple activities for granted but at some stage in all our lives, someone took the time to teach us how to do them. None of these activities would be possible for a 3-year-old if they weren’t educated properly at an early age. Enter ECE professionals.

Early childhood education (ECE) is about educating children between the ages of 0-8 years old. It’s a field that is projected to grow by 25 percent through 2020 and perhaps the biggest reason it is a highly sought after career is because of the rewarding nature of the work.

“I have been teaching early childhood [education] for over 40 years, and without sounding too corny, I have the best job in the world,” says New York City ECE teacher Janet Miserandino.

Putting aside the obvious excitement in Miserandino’s response, the role of an ECE educator is incredibly important. These professionals work to build the social and emotional skills that little ones need to succeed in school and in life.

But with great reward comes great responsibility.

We caught up with a handful of current ECE teachers to talk about the field and what it takes to become a great ECE educator. Here’s what they said. 

1. Working in ECE is About Leadership

Howard University professor Oliver McGee believes early childhood education is about leadership. “I believe elementary and secondary school teaching is a national service of leadership, governance and stewardship,” he says.

Think about teachers you have had in the past. Those teachers that stand out in your memory probably helped lead you through school and encouraged you to push through barriers. They were also the teachers that probably instilled in you the idea that you can achieve whatever you set your mind to. 

“Leadership in teaching honors kids, showing them the way through virtuous values,” McGee says.

2. Working in ECE is About Passion

Rasmussen College School of Education coordinator Ann Caitlin feels the most important characteristic for future ECE teachers is passion. “A person should pursue a career in early childhood education if he or she has a passion for supporting the success of children and families as well as a true desire to advocate for those who do not have a voice,” she says.

Thirty percent of young teachers leave within the first five years of starting out their careers, according to findings from the National Commission on Teaching America’s Future. The reasons given for the overwhelming teacher attrition include budget cuts, lack of structure in the workplace and the test-crazed education culture.

While every workplace is different, every workplace also has its own challenges, barriers and frustrations. In order to get past those frustrations, you have to be passionate about what you do. That is particularly important when the future success of children is at stake.

3. More Males Needed in ECE

While the presence of men in early childhood programs has received notable attention over the years, the field of ECE is a traditionally female-dominated career in which men make up only 5.2 percent. In fact, the percentage of male ECE teachers has been decreasing since 1980 and, according to some experts, the implications of those decreasing numbers could be damaging for young children.

“There is a desperate need for more male teachers,” says Brad Hines, founder of TeachBoys.org. “The younger age bracket you go, fewer men are teaching. [That age of student] is often when it is extremely important for there to be a male figure in the classroom.”

4. Working in ECE is a Gift

Gifts come and go but teachers are the types of gifts that make a memorable and lasting impression on the lives of their students. But it’s not just a one-way street. Teachers can make an impression on kids, but any good teacher will tell you that their students impact them profoundly as well.

“[Teaching] is an opportunity to impact a child’s life in a positive way,” says Dawn Richards, pre-K teacher at Imagine Schools West Gilbert in Phoenix (Ariz.). “You are their home away from home. They are recognized as little individuals in a loving environment.”

Not everyone is meant to teach, but if you’re seriously considering earning a degree and getting into the field, it’s important to discover the skills you possess that you can one day give your students.

The Next Steps

Hopefully these current ECE teachers have given you a better look into the world of education. It is a profession for which a lot is expected, but a lot is also gained.  

So if you’re not at the point in your life where you’re qualified to jump right into the world of education, but you’re still interested in one day being a leader, an inspiration and a gift for young children, be sure to check out early childhood resources for more information on the field.

Also be sure to check out another article for a look at the differences between ECE vs. elementary education.

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Top Online Master of Education Degrees https://www.futureeducators.org/top-online-master-of-education-degrees/ Fri, 24 Jan 2020 02:47:05 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=1475 Continue Reading]]> The U.S. World and News Report yearly ranks educational programs in the United States. The publication recently released new rankings, including those for online master’s in education programs.

The rankings are based on a combination of admissions selectivity, faculty credentials and training, student engagement and accreditation, and student services and technology. Programs that excel in at least three of these four categories are placed on the list.

Here are ten of the top online master’s in education programs from across the country.

10. Brenau University, Gainesville, Georgia

Breneau is a private institution where application to the master’s program is rolling, and there is no difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition. The fully online program features 13 full-time and five part-time faculty members, and students can choose to follow a research/policy track or a teaching track.

9. University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida

With a rolling application process, this private institution features the majority of its courses online. Students can choose either the teaching track or research/policy track, and 51 full-time plus 30 part-time faculty members are available, as well as 24-7 live tech support for all online students.

8. Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio

This public university also features a rolling application process, as well as seven full-time and three part-time faculty members. Students may choose to explore the teaching track, counseling/psychology track, or administration track. Although the majority of classes are online, students have the option to select some face-to-face courses with university permission.

7. Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas

All courses at this public institution are available online, so rolling applicants can utilize the 11 full-time and 9 part-time faculty members to complete the degree. Students may choose between the teaching track, counseling/psychology track, and administration track.

6. Pennsylvania State University-World Campus, University Park, Pennsylvania

This public university boasts having all education classes published online, and qualified rolling applicants are never denied enrollment. Students have the options of the research/policy track, teaching track, or administration track in this program, and they can also switch to campus-based education at any time. Tuition fees are equal for both in-state and out-of-state students.

5. University of Houston, Houston, Texas

With 100 percent of the students at this public university already employed, the school offers the convenience of all courses being available online. Each applicant is required to have taken the GRE exam, and the application deadline for the online program is March 1. This program only offers the teaching track, and it is very selective in its acceptance process. With just 25 students enrolled, the university has four full-time and two part-time faculty members.

4. Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, Illinois

This public institution requires all prospective students to have taken the GRE exam before applying for rolling admission. Approximately 99 percent of the program’s students are employed before they enter either the teaching track or administration track. The majority of the courses in this program are available online, where students can take advantage of 12 full-time and seven part-time faculty members. Students have the option to change to face-to-face classes if necessary.

3. University of Nebraska-Kearney, Kearney, Nebraska

All classes at this public university are posted online, so the 97 percent of students who are already employed have the flexibility for their convenience. All prospective students must have taken the GRE exam before applying for the rolling admission; all qualified applicants are admitted. Students can enter the teaching track or administration track and access classes from the 19 full-time and three part-time faculty members.

2. Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama

Each prospective student is required to take the GRE exam for consideration at this rolling application, public university. Almost 95 percent of the students in the teaching track or counseling/psychology track of this program are already employed. The 12 full-time and three part-time faculty members do not deny admission to any qualified applicant, and in-state and out-of-state students face equal tuition fees.

1. Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York

Because 94 percent of the students in this program are employed, all courses are online at this private institution. Each prospective student must take the GRE exam before submitting an application prior to the February 1 deadline. Only the teaching track is available, but the program does not deny enrollment to any qualified applicants. Students have the option to complete the program online with 13 full-time and four part-time instructors, or they can switch to face-to-face campus instruction at any time. Tuition is the same for both in-state and out-of-state students.

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My Dream to Be a Teacher | Essays https://www.futureeducators.org/dream-to-be-teacher-essays/ Thu, 23 Jan 2020 01:36:07 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=1459 Continue Reading]]> My dream is to become a teacher. If you have this dream, you’re not alone. Here’s a collection of short essays by aspiring teachers.

Current and future education students were asked to describe their motivation; what inspires them to succeed at their teacher training studies.

As well as these 10 essays, you can see more writing collections from future educators. Additional student essays are available on the themes of:

  1. passion to make a difference
  2. beyond the curriculum
  3. inspired by learning experiences
  4. joining the teaching staff

Embracing Diversity in the Classroom

… by Jennamarie Moody

When I close my eyes, I picture myself in a school located in an urban setting, teaching a classroom of diverse yet alike students. These students are in the second grade, meaning that they are impressionable yet vulnerable to their environment whether this means at home, at school, or in their greater community.

Some of these students don’t speak English as their first language, and some come from low-income households that can limit their educational experiences outside of the classroom. And yet, no matter what differences these students bring to the table, their uniqueness flows throughout the classroom in such a positive energy that embraces, respects, and promotes learning. This is the goal I am working towards; the goal of inspiring our youth to become self-advocates for their learning.

Opportunities for equal educational experiences may not exist, however the beauty lies in the growth of love young students can develop as they are challenged in the classroom to question their surroundings. I plan to make a difference in the lives of the children I meet along the way, and to create a safe learning environment.

Although the tests for certification and studies can be difficult, my passion for education and dedication to shaping the lives of my students is what keeps me going. The end goal is to nurture the development of my students to become active and engaged participants in society, and that is what I intend to do completely.

The Future of Children’s Education

… by Lesley Martinez-Silva

I aspire to make a difference in others’ lives through education. I’m studying to be an elementary school teacher because I believe that children can achieve so much more if they learn early of their potential.

Education has always been my priority. My parents always stressed the importance of obtaining an education, having missed that opportunity themselves. My parents taught me as a child that schooling was vital to success in life. Truly, that lesson has been the most important in my path to college. I don’t think I would’ve made it this far had I not taken my education seriously.

I want to teach others about the importance of education so they too can prosper. Everything I’m learning at university is important for my future career and, if I don’t study it, I’m failing my future students. Every child deserves the best education available and I should strive to be the best educator possible to provide that for them. When balancing academics, work, and my social life, it can get challenging to keep going. But, with the future of children’s education in my hands, I always get back on track.

I Dream for My Students

… by Nicole Gongora

The dream of success motivates me to study. Not my success, my future students’ success. I push myself through the rough spots for them.

I was a lost child in high school; I didn’t know how to apply to college, let alone afford it. No child should have to experience that. As a future educator, I am committed to helping my students succeed, achieve more, and continue onto higher education. Every child should be given the opportunity to showcase their strengths and follow their dreams.

College was never a dream for me; it was a far off, unattainable fantasy. I met some inspiring teachers in high school who encouraged me to change my life and who helped me to thrive. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

I plan to work at a low-income school similar to the one I attended. These types of schools are the ones who lack resources. I will serve as a resource to my students and I hope to be an inspiration to them. In turn, I hope they become kind, respectful adults. I want them to see the virtue in helping others and I hope they will serve others in their future careers. I want to be the teacher they remember. I want to be the teacher that helped them succeed.

I’ll feel successful as a teacher if my students are successful in attaining their goals. If one student decides to achieve more then I will have lived out my dream.

“Mo”tivated

… by Mo Cabiles

The world we live in is hard, unsteady and ruthless. We see this everyday in the harshness of homelessness, to social media screaming for justice. What motivates me to continue on is that I have felt the bitter cold bite of homelessness. I know what it’s like to not have enough to eat and to be scared of what will happen next.

I am fortunate to no longer be in those situations but that, by no means, is an indicator that it will all now come easy. As an adult learner and your “non-traditional” student, there are other obstacles I must overcome. From transportation to childcare or education application mastery to APA formatting, the many roadblocks I tackle both large and small are what I consider to be my victories.

I’ve seen what having a higher education can do for someone and I want that for myself and that of my daughters. I strive to be a good example for them, to show them that, regardless of social standing and unforeseeable circumstances, if they work hard and put their best effort forward, they can achieve their dreams.

My dream is to obtain my Masters in Education with an emphasis in counseling, I want to be an academic advisor or guidance counselor. I’ve seen so many youths attempt community college and fail because they fell through the cracks. These students need to realize their potential and I want to help them achieve that and to be their cheerleader.

Doubt and Dreams

… by Katheryn England

Early childhood teacher

As a high school senior, many people assume I’m prepared for college and know what I want to study after graduation. These assumptions cause me to experience moments of self-doubt. Then I re-evaluate what I want for myself, and what it is that keeps me working towards my dreams. Through the goals I’ve set for myself, I can maintain focus, move past my self-doubt and succeed. By focusing on my goals, I can make a difference in the world directly around me.

A goal I have in my life is to be an elementary teacher, also known as an early childhood teacher in Australia. As a teacher, I can share the knowledge I’ve gained to leave behind a better future for our world. Last year, I had the opportunity to work alongside a previous elementary teacher and mentor of mine. I’d visit her classroom daily, and taught lessons alongside her or independently. Uniquely, they were the opening act in my high school’s original winter play. They read firsthand from our scripts and learned what happens behind the scenes. Showing a new part of the world to the youth of my community has motivated me to pursue my dreams.

Remembering this experience and the positive influence I had on those students helps me overcome self-doubt and stay focused on my goals. Thanks to the goals I’ve set for my life, I not only can find purpose for my efforts, but find the will to be confident in whatever choices I make.

One Person

… by Megan Burns

My ultimate goal is to change the lives of people. Studying to be a teacher is hard. All of the classes that are required, all of the practicums, and all of the time spent just to become a teacher is stressful, but the thought of being able to help just one person changes everything.

It takes one person to be a light in someone’s life. It take one person to be a helping hand. It takes one person to change an unmotivated, broken life, and make it brand new. Teachers are those people. We motivate students to do their best, we guide students to success when no one else will, and we are always available to listen. One teacher can change the lives of thousands of students. That is my motivation.

I know that after college, I will be a teacher, a guider, a counselor, and a friend to so many students. No matter how many bad days I have or how many times I want to quit, I just think of what is to come in the future. I can be that change this world needs, even if its in a small high school classroom. It just takes one person.

The Road Not Taken

… by Jenyfer Pegg

My entire life has been filled with discouragement. I grew up in a household where I was constantly told “No”. I was told my ideas were stupid and would not work. In my junior year of high school, my teachers and counselors started talking about college and sending in applications to different places. At that point, I knew I was not going. I came from a poor family and I knew we could never have money for something like college.

But I went on college visits, I listened to people speak about their college, and I was set. I had a lot of things pushing me, except the one thing I really wanted, my family. No one in my family has gone to college, and when I told my mother, she was shocked. She told me she just wanted me out of the house.

When I came to school, I realized I wanted to teach high school. I want to make an actual difference in someone else’s life. My family has taken the same road for years, and I’m not going down that road. I won’t live paycheck to paycheck like my mom, I will be a person that others will look up to.

I’m going to do something worthwhile, and I will work harder than anyone else if it gets me there. I’ve seen what my life will be like without school and motivation and there is absolutely no way I’m going down that road. I’ve got bigger plans.

The Refugee Students

… by Robbie Watson

African boy showing a computer tablet

My road to graduate school has been a long one. I studied religion and culture in undergrad, interested in the material, yet not sure how I would apply it later. Yet I found places, got involved in community and international development, engaged with different cultures, and now feel I use my degree every day.

For over two years I worked alongside Congolese refugees in Rwanda, developing educational opportunities for youths who could not finish secondary school in the underfunded camps. It is these refugees, young and old, the students, the teachers, their passion and vision for a better future that has driven me to seek out more education for myself. I remember how they would pay from their families’ meager funds to attend classes led by volunteer teachers. When finances were against them, or time, or family obligations, or the dire depression of the camp life itself, or even government officials were against them, still those students attended, still those teachers taught.

It is their example of perseverance towards a goal against all odds that inspires me now. I think of them often, think of the friends they were, are still. And I think of how that passion is in me now, to better understand education so that I might better educate, and thus equip such downtrodden communities to work for transformation themselves. I work not only for myself, and am motivated by the potential in those students and educators, which is also in me, and in others like them.

Educational Success

… by Ian T Thomason

While attending the University of Minnesota-Mankato, I have aspirations of becoming a Special Education Teacher. Becoming a Special Education Teacher and helping students who have a need for extra help and students who are having troubles with everyday life are things that I dream of doing. I was in their shoes once and know how difficult it is to deal with everyday life and how nice it was have a teacher to talk to.

Becoming a Special Education Teacher is my ultimate goal and, when difficult times arise, I have to remind myself of the children out there who have it potentially worse than I. When I remember this, I also think back to all of the support that I had from my parents, family members, and teachers. I also know that there are lots of children who don’t have this type of support and, if I can be there for them, that would make my career choice all the more worth it.

My Special Education degree is something more than just a degree for me. It is a degree that allows me to help children improve their education. I realize that children are our future and that their minds are terrible things to waste. So, instead of wasting their minds, why not put our best foot forward to educate them? My dream is to help kids realize their full potential, promote education and a brighter future for every child.

Morning Message

… by Savannah Stamates

I lay awake at night and practice my first morning message to my first round of students whom I will not meet for more than a year.

I wonder if I will have hungry children, happy children, or broken children. I wonder if I will be good enough or strong enough to reach those most in need. I wonder if my students will trust me enough to tell me that they are hungry, happy, or scared.

I worry that I will not be strong enough to share their burden or provide a place for peace and learning. I worry that I will misread their actions or their words or miss them reaching out.

So I study, even when I am tired from working two jobs or sick of not being where I want to be. When my time comes to walk into that classroom, my worries and doubts will be silenced by the knowledge I have mastered and the dream I have finally achieved.

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12 Things Successful Teachers Do https://www.futureeducators.org/12-things-successful-teachers-do/ Wed, 22 Jan 2020 06:12:46 +0000 http://www.futureeducators.org/?p=34 Continue Reading]]>

Are you thinking of becoming a teacher? Or are you looking for ways to become more successful in your teaching career? Well, you should note that teaching is not that easy, but that doesn't mean it can't be fun. It takes a lot of patience and hard work to become a great teacher.

Luckily, there are countless strategies you can use to increase your success as a teacher. Here are a dozen things successful teachers do.

1. Believe In Your Students' Potential

A teacher's success begins with the success of their students. Always have high expectations for your students. Believe in their potential to succeed and make sure you push them to their limits.

Even when they fail, motivate them to try again and to work harder. This strategy helps you to pull them out of their comfort zones so that they can pursue success knowing that you are there to pick them up each time they fail.

2. Learn Everything You Can About Your Field

Being very knowledgeable in your field of study is also a crucial stepping stone towards a successful teaching career. It's true that even the most successful teachers don't know everything. But, the more you know, the easier it will be to teach your students and to offer them prompt answers to their questions. You can also do more with technology, such as doing online lessons and creating exciting technology-based activities.

Learning never stops and that's why, as a teacher, you need to feed your mind with as much information as it can take in. Remember that students always prefer consulting teachers who are known to possess in-depth knowledge about a specific field. Knowledge indicates authenticity.

3. Be Fun and Energetic

Teacher laughing with kids

Did you know that most students are more comfortable sharing their academic problems with humorous and enthusiastic teachers rather than the grumpy and "ever-serious" ones? Yes! The way you carry yourself greatly determines your approachability.

Make a point of smiling each time you converse with your students, crack a joke or two and so on. This helps to ease any tension or fear that the students may be feeling when approaching you for help.

4. Take Risks

They say, "No Risk, No Reward!" Taking risks plays a crucial part in a person's success. Your students watch and observe all your moves. Therefore, if you take risks by trying new things every once in a while, they'll also be confident enough do the same. This pushes them to burst out of their bubbles, exploring the unknown which eventually nurtures their risk taking skills and eventual success.

5. Be Creative and Think Outside The Box

The strategies you use to pass on information to your students need to be creative in a way that captures the attention of your classroom. Strive to make each learning lesson a thrilling one for your students. This not only makes their learning experience fun but also ensures that they are fully engaged during each class and always eager for the next one.

6. Be Consistent and Decisive

To be successful at teaching, you need to be coherent and resolute. If you say something, stick to it! If you say you are going to do something, make sure you see it through! If you set rules, stand firmly by them! Avoid making exceptions or playing favorites.

7. Always be Up-To-Date

A successful teacher knows how important it is to be abreast with the latest news, educational advancements, technology and so on. Sharing this information with your students helps you to keep them updated too. In turn, this adds value to the learning experience.

Sharing new knowledge also pushes students to research and learn more about things that happen beyond the confines of their classroom. They might also do more outside of school hours, boosting knowledge instead of forgetting (e.g. see summer learning loss).

8. Communicate

Communication is a powerful learning tool. Whether it's with a student or with their parent, dialog helps you to pass critical information and recommendations that may be crucial to the student's success.

9. Listen and Show Empathy About Personal Issues

Failing an exam does not always mean that the student failed to read for it. Sometimes, it may be due to external factors. That's why successful teachers always take their time to listen and to advise their students. Always treat them as if they are your own kids. That way they'll always confide in you in case something is deterring their success in class.

10. Provide Relevant Study Materials

This may be in the form of e-books, online resources, past papers, videos and so on – anything and everything that may be useful for their studies. Avoid overloading them with homework and assignments because it may exhaust their minds hence slowing their learning.

11. Be Observant

To be successful at teaching, you need to observe all your students individually separating their strengths from their weaknesses. This will help you to tailor strategies aimed at helping them to harness their strengths and to overcome their weaknesses.

12. Set Goals With Your Students

As mentioned above, a teacher's success is mostly determined by the success of their students. Therefore, you need to set goals and objectives with your students. After that, work with them towards achieving these goals together as a team.

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Technology in Classrooms: Pros and Cons https://www.futureeducators.org/technology-in-classrooms-pros-cons/ Sat, 22 Jun 2019 04:07:39 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=1429 Continue Reading]]> Student learning is an area with enormous potential to benefit from information technology. Information dissemination is, after all, a core strength of today’s technology. And technology offers versatile platforms to streamline classroom teaching.

While technology unlocks innovation opportunities, blended teaching and learning are not without disadvantages. Debate is still going on concerning the potential downsides of integrating technology into classrooms.

Let’s look at both sides by discussing the advantages and disadvantages of students accessing computers and digital information.

Pros of Technology in the Classroom

1. Access high-quality, current information

Modern technology is fantastic when it comes to making information available to everyone. In a classroom setting, getting the most up-to-date data helps ensure the best educational experience. Teachers are also able to use or direct students towards trusted sources to ensure accurate information.

2. Student performance metrics

A clear and powerful advantage of using technology in the classroom is that it allows teachers to perform their job better. For one, platforms that use data analytics can pinpoint the areas where each student is having most difficulty. Performance information allows you to quickly adjust teaching strategies and the syllabus according to the data you’ve gathered and analyzed.

3. Learning technology skills

Using technology in the classroom naturally increases the opportunities for students to learn technology skills. While it’s possible to take all but the simplest IT skills out of a lesson, keeping some technical challenges in there for students is healthy. After all, we live in a digital world and have things like virtual offices and working online from home.

For example, you can give students freedom in how they present project results. The smart ones, who could perhaps become IT professionals in the future, will find and deploy internet resources, such as graphics or charting software, to enhance the presentation.

4. Improved student participation

Students generally love technology and introducing it is a way to boost engagement. You can also apply technology to get more information from reserved students.

If you need to ask the opinion of everyone regarding a topic or even a simple question, why not use an online polling platform? This way, even quiet students who normally wouldn’t want to speak in the classroom would be able to participate.

Online platforms are often flexible in allowing you to exercise your creativity. You can, for instance, customize quizzes to make them more engaging and competitive. The possibilities are limitless.

5. Automate repetitive tasks

Teaching can include tedious tasks such as keeping track of attendance, recording quiz scores and noting tasks completed. With the present technology available, such tasks can now be fully automated. This can unlock time teachers are able to divert to substantive teaching endeavors.

Highlighting the Cons

1. Issue of speed

While the lightning pace with which technology operates may seem like a clear benefit, experienced educators are actually wary of this aspect. Gadgets and learning apps are able to function faster than the corresponding learning speed of the human mind.

Normally, proper and coherent cognitive thought takes time. Otherwise, engagement can be drastically reduced. It’s for this reason experts are suggesting we modify media use, such as how videos are presented, to slow down and allow for more rumination and contemplation.

2. Technology can be distracting

Gadgets like laptops and tablets in the classroom are bound to become sources of distraction to students. This is especially true if the devices don’t limit access to apps unrelated to lessons, quizzes, and other educational activities.

A need exists for appropriate restrictive measures on gadgets in the classroom to ensure they further learning goals and aren’t used, for example, to play games or use social media for pure entertainment. You can be sure that some badly behaved students will always try to use technology for fun instead of the intended purpose.

3. Less direct social interaction

The apparent way in which technology excises social interaction is another cause for concern. Students have less need to verbally communicate and interact with their teachers and with one another when using technology. To address this, classroom teachers should ensure activities such as oral presentations, recitations and group work happen regularly.

4. Lesson planning complexity

While technology could make the job of a teacher very easy in the future, we are not there yet. Devising effective lessons using digital technology rather than traditional methods can be challenging and time consuming. That’s why it’s important for educators to share their insights on how to effectively teach kids when there is technology in the classroom.

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How to Handle Bad Student Behavior https://www.futureeducators.org/how-to-handle-bad-student-behavior/ Thu, 06 Jun 2019 01:16:30 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=1410 Continue Reading]]> A classroom brings together all sorts of students, both well and badly behaved. The latter need special attention to usher them back on the path to good behavior. If you’re having a tough time with certain students in your class, try out the following strategies.

1. Bring difficult students close to you

And that is meant quite literally. In a classroom setting, you’ll often find that the noisemakers and stubborn elements tend to sit at the back of the class, which offers anonymity and gives confidence to misbehave. Sitting such students at the opposite end of the room, somewhere close to the teacher’s desk, makes them easily stand out and deters such actions.

2. Talk to them in private

Calling out students in front of the class rarely proves helpful. It can breed resentment and further indiscipline. Also, don’t blame or reduce students in front of their friends. Rather, ask him/her to see you after the lesson, when you can look to find out the underlying reason behind the behavior.

– Reasons for bad behavior –

Acting up can be indicative of family problems back home. For example, the child’s parents may have divorced, meaning he or she is dealing with the challenge of co-parenting arrangements or being separated from a parent. Conflict can arise because issues to do with contact time and child support.

Children also misbehave out of a perceived need to impress peers. You could tackle that with a real-life example of how acting out in class is not the best solution. Rather, talking it out at the appropriate time is. While you’re at it, be sure to explain why what they did is wrong and the negative consequences of such actions.

3. Be the role model of the behavior you want

Enforcing rules in a classroom is hard if you don’t follow them yourself. Besides having clear policies or rules in place, you should be the first to practice what you preach. Otherwise, students will be inclined to follow your examples instead of your words. If you reprimand students for lateness, for example, be early every day.

4. Define right from wrong

At times, especially when dealing with young children, students might not know what constitutes unacceptable class behavior. They might know that playing “PokemonGo” in class is wrong or reading “Cinderella” in the middle of a lesson is not allowed. Help make the line between right and wrong clear to them.

5. Focus more on rewards than punishments

Avoiding punishment is an effective strategy to ensure everyone is on their best behavior but rewards are a more productive approach over the long run. Dangling the lure of incentives to students often gives them that push to, not only steer clear of rule infringements, but put their best foot forward.

Rewards could be anything from candy, a stuffed toy, or simple compliments to acknowledge their efforts. You can also make classroom activities so engaging that students don’t want to disrupt what is happening.

6. Adopt the peer tutor technique

No matter how friendly and accommodating you may try to be, sometimes a misbehaving student needs the shoulder of a peer to lean on. That person could be someone going through the same life experiences or simply a non-authoritative figure.

Using the peer tutor technique, you pair the well-behaved student (the “tutor”) with one not so well-behaved. While they are working on polishing their academics, the “learner” can also be getting a lesson on proper personal skills. It’s prudent you talk to the mentoring student and explain to him/her what you aim to accomplish and what he/she can do to help.

7. Try to understand

Sometimes, a student may be construed to be rude when they are actually abiding by a cultural practice or tradition. In some cultures, for example, it is prohibited to look adults in the eye. So when you’re telling a student to do so and is looking away or down at the ground, it might have something to do with that.

Before you straight away label any action as bad behavior, first get to the root of the matter. For all they know, you may be asking them to do something contrary to what they believe is right or proper.

Last, but certainly not least, never give up on a seemingly stubborn student who looks determined to work your every nerve. Don’t let up on the good fight until it is won. Sometimes that takes minutes, other times it takes weeks. Be patient and never let your frustrations get the better of you.

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6 Tips on How To Engage Students https://www.futureeducators.org/6-tips-on-how-to-engage-students/ Fri, 29 Mar 2019 21:55:10 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=1308 Continue Reading]]> by Meralie Edwards.

Creating an engaging learning environment can be a challenge at times for any classroom teacher. But you really want your students to be engrossed in the subject you’re teaching.

When kids are engaged and attentive, I’ve found that they are better listeners and respond quicker to instructions. Plus, they look like they’re learning and having fun.

Here are several ways to help engage students and make the classroom more interesting, light and beneficial for learning. I’ve based these on my own experiences as a late elementary school teacher. But the tips also draw on research into what’s effective across all age groups.

1. Make Classes Interactive

Unless you are a truly fantastic presenter, your students could become bored very quickly when they’re only hearing you talk. Involving your students in discussion is a time-honored method to keep attention levels up and manage a classroom effectively.

One of the best ways to gauge your students’ understanding is by asking questions or letting them ask questions. Give the students a chance to give their opinion over debatable issues. You should let your students be part of the class as much as possible. Interactivity is vital for struggling students and can be used to engage advanced students as well.

2. Create Classroom Games

Everybody likes playing games of some sought. Whether at an elementary or higher education level, playing games is a classic method to activate the student’s thoughts and engage them in the topic.

Academic puzzles, science toys (such as terrariums, specimen rocks and microscopes) and mind-challenging games can be incorporated in lessons. You can also create competitive games in a class where students try to outshine each other in groups or as individuals.

3. Give Students Choices

Do your students have any say over what happens in your class? Students feel appreciated and gain enthusiasm when they are involved in decision making. For example, for the subject, you could let students choose between doing a project on dinosaurs or modern reptiles.

No matter how young they may be, students have ideas that might help improve the learning environment. You can do this without handing over control, such as by giving them options to choose from or by creating an activity that requires decision making.

4. Use Technology

Technology usually arouses people’s interest, even us grownups. Students love experimenting with devices such as tablets, phones and computers. Technology and videos, when used in the classroom sparingly, is an effective way to get students interested in the lesson.

If you choose to use technology, try to really connect it to learning rather than allowing it to be a distraction from subject. Including online communication is also a way to start teaching netiquette to older children. Generally, you need to use academic standard approved devices, software and other online resources that are optimized for the classroom environment.

5. Relate Material to Students’ Lives

Learning materials that relate to real life are tend to have a greater impact. If you realize that your students seem to be losing attention or do not understand what you are teaching, try to inject real-life examples.

For instance, if a student asks you why you teach about money, do not use a “because” answer. Use a practical life example such as, ” We need money to buy things in life.” You can make it clear by demonstration or using examples.

6. Incorporate Mystery In Your Lessons

Find a way of creating suspense in your lessons. You can give students hints about your next lesson and tell them to find out more information. You can even set a reward for the students who discover things on their own.

Find something each time to turn the lesson into a bit of a problem solving quest. Using mysteries and investigation can really boost the mood of the class.

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Top 10 Christian Colleges and Universities https://www.futureeducators.org/top-10-christian-colleges-universities/ Fri, 12 Oct 2018 04:26:12 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=380 Continue Reading]]> If you’re interested in teaching religious studies, a popular path is to do a faith-related degree with a Christian college or university. Here are some good choices to consider for becoming a classroom teacher. These are our top 10 Christian colleges and universities in the United States.

Also, check out this article: Top Religious Universities in Australia.

10. Grand Canyon University

Based in Phoenix, Arizona, Grand Canyon University is home to over 8,000 on campus students. Unlike many of its competitors, it offers in excess of 100 online degrees increasing its reach and scope to a wider national and international catchment area. Despite being an interdenominational institution, it remains fully committed to the Christian faith by requiring its students to attend twice weekly chapel services either in person or online.

9. Liberty University

Tucked away within the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, Liberty University is one of the largest Christian colleges in the world. It leads the way in terms of providing affordable courses for its students as it is a not-for-profit institution. Furthermore its affordability is extended to its dynamic offering of over 160 wide ranging online courses. It is often ranked as one of the best providers of online tuition in the US.

8. Saint Leo University

Founded in 1889, Saint Leo University is the oldest Catholic higher education establishment in the state of Florida. It is widely regarded as a leader in terms of online courses offered, and has the reputation of being a major provider of higher education to the U.S military. It offers prospective students 15 undergraduate major programs and 40 distinctive graduate degrees and certifications, marking it out as an established university of multiple disciplines across both the arts and sciences. Saint Leo’s has a large study abroad program, with destinations such as Sydney, Australia and Bogota, Colombia.

7. Ohio Christian University

Ohio Christian University provides higher education with a, ‘holistic, Christ-centred, biblically integrated education in the Wesleyan tradition.” It specialises in business, leadership, ministry, psychology and counselling courses through its AIM (Adult Degree Program). Unlike many mainstream universities, Ohio Christian University boasts a student-to-faculty ratio of just 15 to 1.

6. University College

University College stands to the north of Los Angeles, California. Founded in 1889 in the Evangelical Christian tradition, the university has developed into The University of The Pacific; a bastion of higher learning on the west coast. It provides access to over 100 associate BA and MA courses, and is annually ranked among the top universities within the USA by national and international news, media and educational specialists. It is also worth noting that University College offers the opportunity for students to study a wide range of courses at both full-time and part-time level.

5. Graceland University

Established in 1895, Graceland University is a liberal arts university with a strong Christian ethos. Its booming campuses in Lamoni, Iowa and Missouri are a sign of its vast student base. A popular institution with prospective students, the university has fantastic feedback from its students and boasts high course rankings in the specialisms of nursing and education.

4. Indiana Wesleyan University

A relatively new institution having only been established in 1985, the Indiana Wesleyan University is a regional university founded in the Wesleyan Christian tradition. It is a Christ-centered and student focused liberal arts university that is the largest member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. It is the largest private university in Indiana and owns Excelsia College in Australia, giving it links into the Australian university system.

3. University of Northwestern | St. Paul, MN

This university was established at the start of the 20th century in 1902. It is an evangelical institution with a reputation for its flexible hybrid courses, whereby students can choose to study part-online and part on-campus. There is a mandatory daily chapel program featuring a variety of speakers from around the world. Unlike many of its competitors all of its faculties require undergraduate students to earn a minor in Bible studies by studying at least 30 credits of Bible studies throughout their university career.

2. Wheaton College

Wheaton College of Illinois is an evangelical protestant institution, offering a reputation of excellence within the liberal arts. It boasts an impressive 91% graduation rate with a 90% employment rate two years post graduation. Both figures of which are well above the national US average. As a liberal arts institution, Wheaton College has a proud liberal tradition having graduated Illinois’ first ever African-American graduate. Noted for its emphasis on quality academics and deep faith, Wheaton College provides an education equal to its provision of religious doctrine.

1. Emory University

Emory University is one of the best Christian universities in the US and is ranked 52nd overall. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, it was founded along Methodist and Episcopal traditions in honor of Methodist Bishop John Emory. The university has an unprecedented reputation of providing holistic and pastoral support to its students along with a 91% graduation rate and a 91% employment rate two years post graduation. The university also has a high student satisfaction rate across its faculties, with 82% of students believing that their professors invested a lot of time and effort into their tuition.

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Plagiarism Checkers for Teachers https://www.futureeducators.org/plagiarism-checkers-for-teachers/ Fri, 29 Dec 2017 02:13:01 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=346 Continue Reading]]> With the incredible (and rapidly growing) volume of information available online, plagiarism is a real issue for teachers to deal with. Students can save tremendous amounts of time by copying content for assignments. If they get away with it, they miss out on developing skills in research, critical thinking and writing.

Thankfully, as an instructor, you have tools available to catch many forms of plagiarism. With some quick checks, you can identify text that is wholly or partially copied.

Some plagiarism checkers allow you to scan a PDF or Word document, while others require you to cut and paste the contents into a webpage. Some search just easily available content, while others explore journals and even remember scans they’ve done before. Almost all deliver a report that, not only shows which part of the assignment is plagiarized, but reveals the source from where it was taken.

PlagScan

PlagScan uses a two-step algorithm to increase speed and effectiveness. Instead of checking every document in the world, it identifies and targets thematically related content. Educators qualify for a free account.

PlagTracker

With more than 5 million academic papers and 14 billion webpages in its database (at last count), the paid version of PlagTracker is one of the most expensive on the market. Any plagiarized parts of the text are highlighted for easy referencing, along with links to the sources. That means you are able to see exactly what was plagiarized, and identify exactly where the content originated from with the press of one key.

SafeAssign

You may already have this plagiarism checker since it’s available through Blackboard, a popular educational platform used by universities and colleges to connect students and instructors. Unfortunately, that’s the only way to get access to SafeAssign – through Blackboard – as it’s not a standalone product. The database includes any resources provided by the institution, as well as any assignments that was made by students using the Blackboard platform.

Paper Rater

Paper Rater is a plagiarism checker that also examines grammar, spelling, style, word choice and vocabulary. While it does a lot to help students modify text to beat checkers, it also assists teachers to form an assessment about writing quality when screening assignments.

TurnItIn

TurnItIn is regarded as one of the best in the industry because it offers three separate search options. Not only can you check assignments against every document on the Internet, including archived data, you also can check against previously submitted reports as well as periodicals and journals. If a student tries to turn in a recycled assignment that’s already on the database, red flags are raised.

Copyscape

Professional writers and journalists use Copyscape to check the originality of their copy. The plagiarism checker doesn’t operate its own database, instead accessing multiple search indexes to expand accessible resources. And since these indexes are their own databases that are continuously being updated, Copyscape has a reputation for a high level of accuracy.

Grammarly

Grammarly is popular in the journalism community because it helps writers correct punctuation, spelling, grammar and even enhance the usage of vocabulary and documents. Even better, it can be accessed as a browser extension for Safari or chrome, a desktop app, or as a Microsoft add-in. With multiple ways of using this anti-plagiarism tool, it’s no wonder teachers have grown fond of it as well.

Plagium

A distinguishing feature of this plagiarism detection tool is that Plagium scans social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter for duplicate content.

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How to Become a Classroom Teacher https://www.futureeducators.org/how-to-become-a-classroom-teacher/ Wed, 27 Dec 2017 05:51:05 +0000 https://www.futureeducators.org/?p=308 Continue Reading]]>

Every teacher takes on professional responsibility for the education of others. Teachers are trained and equipped with skills to foster education and development in students of all ages. To become a classroom teacher in America, you need a bachelor degree and relevant certifications. Here's an outline of the traditional path future educators can follow.

Bachelor Degree

The academic entry level into the teaching profession is a bachelor degree. This makes you eligible to be employed as a teacher from the kindergarten level to 12th grade. Those who teach preschool kids require a lower level of education; a 2-year degree in Early Childhood Education is adequate. The specific education requirements depend on state regulations, the school subject, student grade, and years of experience (for example, a faith-related bachelor degree from a Christian college may help you teach religious studies in private schools). Online study options are available, allowing you to choose from the best online education programs from across the country.

Teacher Education Programs

Once you have completed a bachelor degree with classes geared towards education, the next step is to complete a teacher education program (if it wasn’t incorporated into the bachelor course). A teaching program provides the opportunity for you to gain necessary skills and fine-tune what you've already learned. Programs usually last between 8 and 12 weeks, often divided into 2 sessions in different schools. You practice preparing lesson plans, network, observe classroom mentors, and instruct students.

Certification

Before getting a position at a public school, a new teacher must satisfy state requirements and get teaching credentials. Even though requirements vary from state to state, the basics are a bachelor degree suitable for being an educator and completing a teacher education program. Some states require teachers to pass tests like the Praxis Exam before acquiring a teaching license.

The specific licenses include early childhood education, elementary education, middle school, secondary school, and specialized teaching. Many states require hands-on experience under a supervisor before giving the specific license.

Gaining Employment as a Teacher

Teachers can apply for openings in the state of their certification based on their training, subject background, level of expertise, experience, and specialty training. Most teachers gain employment in a traditional classroom environment in a private or public school. You can build networks within the profession to make it easier to gain new employment and find professional development opportunities. Every teaching environment is unique and, as a new teacher, all kinds of interesting experiences await you. Teachers have skills that can be applied beyond the classroom, such as in corporate training, and good communicators can always consider making a career transition into teaching.

How to Succeed in College Studies (Compared to High School)

Teacher education college student.As you transition from high school to college, there will be many changes in your life that can impact your academic performance. Moreover, the college experience is far less structured than what you are accustomed to in high school. Therefore, you will need to make some changes to succeed at the highest level in college.

Get Organized From the First Day

Many students who find high school relatively easy are surprised to discover that college level coursework is much more demanding. Unfortunately, they sometimes learn too late that if you fall behind in a college course, it is much harder to catch up and do well than in a high school course. Here are a few tips on how to stay organized.

On the first day of each college course, be sure to carefully read over the class syllabus. This will give you a good idea of the material you'll be covering, when the exams will be given, and when the assignments will be due. After each class, find your favorite "go to spot" where you can read over your notes and make clarifications where needed. You'll want to do this when the material is still very fresh in your mind. If you wait, you may not understand what you wrote or what you meant to say, an all too common dilemma. Reviewing your notes (and any materials the professor handed out) immediately will help you retain the information better for test time too.

Go the Extra Mile

All college classes will provide a list of REQUIRED books and materials you'll need for the course. However, you should view this as the MINIMUM resources needed to pass the class. Most professors will give you "suggested" reading material and or recommend other resources. Actually reading or reviewing these extra resources will give you the opportunity to excel in the course, not simply pass it.

For example, a professor may suggest you take a look at a particular website or a specific book at the library for additional information. She may suggest you visit one of the museums on campus or in town and go by a particular exhibit. While these suggestions are indeed optional, you should take advantage of these extra opportunities as much as possible to enhance your learning. If you do so, you will have far more success in college.

Join or Form a Study Group

Study groups are a good way to compare notes so you become more clear on the material. Also, explaining something to another student is a great way to reinforce the material in your own mind!

You may want to delay joining or forming a study group until you get a better sense of the other students in the class. For a study group to be effective, you want to associate yourself with students who are motivated to do well. For online education, study groups are seen as essential to make the learning experience interactive.

Take Advantage of Office Hours

Unlike high school teachers, college professors are required to hold "office hours." This is a specified time that professors make themselves available to their students. Office hours are a great time for you to have one on one time with your professor. In addition to asking for help with the course, this can come in handy when it's time to ask for recommendations. Keep in mind too that most college courses have teaching assistants (T.A.s) that also hold office hours so take advantage of this opportunity as well.

During office hours, you can ask questions on portions of the lectures you didn't quite understand (never be afraid to ask questions!). You can also go over certain topics in greater depth so you understand the material better. This can be as simple as asking your professor, "I found what you said about XYZ really interesting... can you tell more more about that?" If appropriate, you could ask your professor to draw a diagram to help visualize a complicated topic or take one you've drawn to her and ask if you got it right.

Manage Your New Found Freedom

Your freshman year of college can be an exciting time. Usually, you're off on your own for the first time in your life. You don't have a curfew. You don't have parents, teachers, principals, and guidance counsellors hovering over you every day, even every hour, making sure you do your assignments and don't goof off too much. There are also temptations to stray away from your studies everywhere you turn. Your friends will encourage you to go with them to parties and activities off campus. Nearby bars will be all too happy to take your money. In fact, they'll be competing for your attention will all sorts of fun activities.

First, you'll want to be a well rounded individual in college so get involved in social activities and make new friends. However, make sure this does not interfere with your ability to succeed in college. The best way around this is to set some rules for yourself. For example, you could set a rule to never drink except on certain nights of the week. You could also take a pledge to yourself that you will study a certain number of hours per day (or week) before you allow yourself to go out and have fun. This works best if you can find at least one friend, preferably more, who will take such a pledge with you.

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