Fundamental Role of Reflective Practice in the Learning Process

Topics: Educational psychology, Education, Learning Pages: 5 (1660 words) Published: October 9, 2010

Effective teaching does not only entail the successful use of certain instructional strategies and behaviours related to academic achievement, it as well includes the ability to determine just when, where as well as with whom these strategies and behaviours should be used. Having these considerations in mind, effective teaching necessitates high levels of informed as well as reasoned decision-making. Reflective teachers ought to have and use the capability to decisively evaluate what they do along with the decisions they make. This examination is called reflection and the process in its totality is known as the reflective teaching. Reflective teachers ought to think deeply concerning their actions, and are thoughtful, self-critical, analytical as well as informed decision-makers. They take time considering the impact of their job in addition to the potential needed to alter or adjust their actions. Reflective practice is the process of conducting a decisive self-examination of one’s teaching. Reflective practice entails a purposeful pause taken by the educator to assess beliefs, goals as well as practices so as to attain new or deeper comprehension that will lead to action that improves students’ learning (Hunt G. H., Hunt G. and Touzel 2009 p. 6).

Since reflective teaching is a process where educators stop momentarily to reflect on their instruction so that they can make sense of it, this helps teachers to develop professionally by influencing how successful they are at learning their own experiences. Reflective thinking assists teachers to think back over their teaching to analyze what they did and why as well as considering how they may improve learning for their students in future. Reflective thinking is the basis of the education procedure. The ability of reflective practitioner determines the potential of quality instruction. It is the role of a reflective practitioner to consider and weigh various points of view and perspective, explain and defend decisions that have been made, as well as alter decisions once made when presented with new and relevant information (Hunt G. H., Hunt G. and Touzel 2009 p. 7). Through my experiences in the classroom I have often had to reflect on statements I have made to students and had to adjust them accordingly. An example of this was when I began telling a student “Don’t hit or touch”, I stopped and thought that this isn’t an instruction with purpose and I then rephrased the statement to “If you are having a problem with this student you should verbally discuss the issue or tell the teacher”. I found by doing that, the student then had options to use to deal with a stressful situation by using problem based learning. Reflective practice is all about recognizing and possessing the skills, competencies as well as knowledge necessary to efficient practice and recognizing that reflective practitioners ought to continually seek develop further their abilities so as to achieve and maintain high levels of effectiveness. Since a classroom is composed of learners of diverse backgrounds, interests as well as motivations, ability levels in addition to learning styles, reflective practice is about understanding in depth the principles of learning, growth as well as development so that reflective practitioners can make important decisions concerning the selection of effective instructional strategies. Again through my understanding of students in the classroom, I have often had to reflect on important decisions concerning the selection of effective instructional strategies I had used. With certain students the calm, directional and instructional approach has been used to achieve the best possible outcome, for example “pick up your books and pack your bag, ready for home time”, where as with other students, non-verbal communication has been the most effective and this has been demonstrated through suggestive looks and body...

References: Burridge R. et al. (2002). Effective learning & teaching in law. London, Routledge.
Hirst K. M. and Nutbrown C. (2005). Perspectives on early childhood education: contemporary research. Staffordshire, Trentham Books.
Hunt G. and Touzel J. T. (2009). Effective Teaching: Preparation and Implementation. Illinois, Charles C Thomas Publisher.
Pavlovich K. (2007). The development of reflective practice through student journals: Higher Education Research and Development 26 (3): 281-295.
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