What is Pedagogy?
Pedagogy is the art (and science) of teaching. Effective teachers use an array of teaching strategies because there is no single, universal approach that suits all situations. Different strategies used in different combinations with different groupings of students will improve learning outcomes. Some strategies are better suited to teaching certain skills and fields of knowledge than are others. Some strategies are better suited to certain student backgrounds, learning styles and abilities. Effective pedagogy, incorporating an array of teaching strategies that support intellectual engagement, connectedness to the wider world, supportive classroom environments, and recognition of difference, should be implemented across all key learning and subject areas. Effective pedagogical practice promotes the wellbeing of students, teachers and the school community - it improves students' and teachers' confidence and contributes to their sense of purpose for being at school; it builds community confidence in the quality of learning and teaching in the school.
We strongly believe in engaging children, involving them and allowing them to learn.
This philosophy is always kept in mind:
RESEARCH DONE ON TEACHING PEDAGOGY:
There are a variety of theories and strategies that I believe are needed for effective teaching and learning, particularly within HSIE. The nine step pyramid process of the Wilson and Murdoch inquiry learning model integrates the theory of Bloom's Taxonomy, which differentiates and supports learning for students of all ability levels. Bloom's Taxonomy is a significant theory forming my personal pedagogy as it caters for the variety of learning abilities within the classroom to encourage and support students through the steps of higher order thinking. This process is often presented as a pyramid also, because as you move up the pyramid through the higher order thinking skills, the smaller the number of students who may achieve at each level. As seen below, the steps in both processes are similar and can be integrated within a unit to enhance learning for all abilities.
The inquiry learning model also poses high challenge learning but as a teacher, I may provide students with high support through this process. Therefore this process also relates to Vygotsky's zone of proximal development in which students are engaged and learn most effectively through a high challenge, high support environment.
Throughout the inquiry learning process, it is also imperative for teachers to cater for student learning styles within teaching and learning strategies. Gardner's theory of Multiple Intelligences defines seven types of intelligences:
Through the incorporation of this theory, all student needs are met by creating teaching and learning strategies that allow all students to achieve. Assessment should also be varied to allow students of all learning styles to work to their strengths and present their learning adequately.
Teachers also have a responsibility to know their students, conduct prior, ongoing and formal assessments and make learning relevant for students.
Therefore, inquiry learning incorporates all elements of effective teaching and learning that I believe are needed within a teacher's pedagogy. Students are engaged with HSIE content through open-ended tasks that are differentiated to meet various learning abilities (Bloom's Taxonomy), learning styles (Gardner's Multiple Intelligences), provide high challenge and high support (Vygotsky's zoe of proximal development), effectively integrates ICT and incorporates a constructivism approach to ensure learning is student-based.