Books on teaching and education

  • #1
Hello there. My questions are: do you know of any books you could suggest reading for teaching and how to educate?

How someone can change his teaching styles and what to add to improve students' attention, interest and make them study on their own? Should he speak generally to all the students or sometimes ask specifically some students and see how they are improved as time passes?

I would also want to say that a part of education is the intellectual part, another part is the physical and an other the moral part.What about the physical improvement of the students or their moral improvement, how can he teach them?

What books should he read about those things? Thank you.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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I have always thought that the most important factor was to really know what you are talking about. More specifically, the teacher needs to have actually worked with the material, not simply done textbook problems. This requires that the would be teacher get out of academia and go to a lab or industry actually doing the work. It makes a huge difference when you can say, "I've seen ..." vs "the book tells us that ..."
 
  • #3
I have always thought that the most important factor was to really know what you are talking about. More specifically, the teacher needs to have actually worked with the material, not simply done textbook problems. This requires that the would be teacher get out of academia and go to a lab or industry actually doing the work. It makes a huge difference when you can say, "I've seen ..." vs "the book tells us that ..."
Can the teacher add things other teachers do not at most times when teaching? Is it a bit risky or not? It is different to say someone has seen than the book tells us that, but books perhaps could guide him to try and experiment with methods others have not tried in their teaching. Do you know any examples of those methods specifically?Perhaps the way he talks, the energy he has when teaching or letting the students express themselves on the questions he makes could help?

For students who are not interested in the topics he teaches and do not try on their own, what could he do?
 
  • #4
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Without a doubt, the energy and enthusiasm a teacher brings to the class room make a lot of difference. For this reason, I have strongly resisted teaching assignments that would have me teaching subjects I either don't like or don't feel competent to teach.
For students who are not interested in the topics he teaches and do not try on their own, what could he do?
For these folks, if this condition remains after several discussions between the teacher and the student, then the best solution is to suggest a change of majors.
 
  • #5
gleem
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Are you interested in teaching high school, college, continuing adult education? You also need to know the student's background, intellectual capability, and motivation so the level of the presentation can be adjusted as needed. I might add that you must be also interested in and or care about the student.
 
  • #6
Are you interested in teaching high school, college, continuing adult education? You also need to know the student's background, intellectual capability, and motivation so the level of the presentation can be adjusted as needed. I might add that you must be also interested in and or care about the student.
I am not yet a teacher because i have not graduated yet from my university, i am still a student. I do not actually know what kind of students i want to teach, i have not yet figured it out.

As far as student's background, intellectual capability, and motivation are concerned, what specifically you mean with these? Can you give some examples? Because examples can help in this case. I think that the more degree of interest or care someone has about the student the better the results of his teaching will be. Is this correct?

I do not know yet the kind of students i want to teach , but let us suppose that they are high school students. Could you help me in this case?
 
  • #7
Without a doubt, the energy and enthusiasm a teacher brings to the class room make a lot of difference. For this reason, I have strongly resisted teaching assignments that would have me teaching subjects I either don't like or don't feel competent to teach.

For these folks, if this condition remains after several discussions between the teacher and the student, then the best solution is to suggest a change of majors.
Can you talk specifically about that energy and enthusiasm and the sourse the teacher gets them from?Is it just interest,care for the students, teaching? Does external motivation help more or is it more internal motivation?
 
  • #8
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I am not yet a teacher because i have not graduated yet from my university, i am still a student. I do not actually know what kind of students i want to teach, i have not yet figured it out.

As far as student's background, intellectual capability, and motivation are concerned, what specifically you mean with these? Can you give some examples? Because examples can help in this case. I think that the more degree of interest or care someone has about the student the better the results of his teaching will be. Is this correct?

I do not know yet the kind of students i want to teach , but let us suppose that they are high school students. Could you help me in this case?
I believe the poster is referring to what level of the material are students supposed to have come into the start of the class, at what level will the material be covered at (rigor), is this a class for actual majors in the field or an elective (ie., physics for life science vs physics for physics majors), how bright are your students. Things like this...
 
  • #9
gleem
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As far as student's background, intellectual capability, and motivation are concerned, what specifically you mean with these? Can you give some examples? Because examples can help in this case. I think that the more degree of interest or care someone has about the student the better the results of his teaching will be. Is this correct?

Background can refer to a few things like knowledge or exposure to subjects relative to the course you are teaching for example math for a physics course. It can also refer to the student's social environment which may challenge the student's ability to participate in the learning process.

By intellectual capability, I mean the inherent age-dependent ability of the person to grasp certain concepts, particularly for young students.

By motivation, I mean the reason the person is taking a particular course. Is it genuine interest, curiosity, something that must be endured, or was it a mistake to have taken it?

In caring for the student are you providing that which the student needs to be successful and get the most out of the course? You as well as the student need to understand the purpose (objectives) of the course. By caring you also assure you are doing your best to help the student learn.
 
  • #10
Vanadium 50
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I am not yet a teacher because i have not graduated yet from my university, i am still a student.

So why the question?

If it's to demonstrate that all the teachers you have had are somehow doing it wrong, and that this is the source of your struggles, that's probably not a very useful direction.

If it's to get ahead, I think partt of why you struggle is that you get ahead of yourself. You would be well-served to attend to the here and now.
 
  • #11
So why the question?

If it's to demonstrate that all the teachers you have had are somehow doing it wrong, and that this is the source of your struggles, that's probably not a very useful direction.

If it's to get ahead, I think partt of why you struggle is that you get ahead of yourself. You would be well-served to attend to the here and now.
I think that if i prepare myself at teaching before becoming a teacher,perhaps it will help, if i become a teacher. I am not allowed to say they were doing it wrong.
 
  • #12
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Can you talk specifically about that energy and enthusiasm and the sourse the teacher gets them from?Is it just interest,care for the students, teaching? Does external motivation help more or is it more internal motivation?

Energy and enthusiasm comes largely from believing that you are doing something useful and important. If you think that the material you are teaching will never be useful, it is impossible to be enthused about teaching it. This is where I would come back to the need to actually go do the work, in industry or an industrial lab. (I would exclude government labs; in my own experience, they are do-nothing operations, just like the rest of the government). When you speak of external motivation, I can't really think of any that would help significantly.
 
  • #13
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(I would exclude government labs; in my own experience, they are do-nothing operations, just like the rest of the government).

I really could not let this go by. My experience is that many government labs are some of the best labs in the world filled with people who put men on the moon, and are currently in the process of tracking disease, despite working with ridiculous political constraints, personal objections (such as the points of view of this earlier reply), and tight budgets. For many years, government labs had some of the most powerful computers in the world. Many experts today ,cut their teeth on the newest equipment that was available to them by government labs. Where else did Grace Hopper encounter the computer bug or Margaret Hamilton develop software for Apollo. Quantum computing, and artificial intelligence, and other disciplines are being investigated today as well.

This is about the kindest reply to Dr. D that I can write. If Dr D had this experience while working at a govt lab, I feel sorry for him. I work with many colleagues in such labs who do not share these experiences, and have had fulfilling careers.

My experience is that many aspiring physicists today should count themselves lucky if in a few years when they graduate, to get an offer from a government lab. Given the strong competition for academic positions, it may be the best option available. Looking down the road, they might even be happier, that an academic position was not in the cards.
 
  • #14
haushofer
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One book I liked as a beginning teacher is Teach like a champion". The title is horrible American, but the books all kinds of useful tips and small things to pay attention to which have large effects.
 

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