In line with the theme of Teachers’ Conference 2019 (Maximizing Learning: Engage. Collaborate. Innovate.), the SingTeach team asked four teacher-participants at the conference about their thoughts on professional development and their role as motivators in the classrooms.
Teacher, Springfield Secondary School
Teachers hold the torch and ignite students’ passion for learning. As teachers’ practices impact students’ learning, it is important for us to continually upgrade our skillsets to allow us to better enact pedagogies in a way that meaningfully impacts learners.
Vice Principal, Anchor Green Primary School
Teachers play a key role in motivating, encouraging and engaging students to be active learners and giving them the confidence to excel in their pursuits. As long as we focus on our students, our efforts to engage and enrich their learning will not go wrong.
To motivate each other to develop professionally, you first have to be with the right company. I am lucky that my colleagues always keep a look-out for relevant courses, seminars and workshops. We share useful readings with one another as a way to motivate one another to learn. My company of friends are passionate learners. When you are surrounded by people who talk about new things, you increasingly also want to learn about it. So the formal or informal sharing of information can help motivate one another to develop professionally.
Teacher, Chung Cheng High School (Yishun)
Teachers can do it through peer-coaching. Teachers can help each other develop themselves by examining their own teaching practices. The traditional way of doing this is through lesson observations. However, what makes peer coaching different is that, they can carry out constructive dialogues which help them reflect on their pedagogy. The conversations need to draw on each other’s strengths as well as building and refining new skills. It helps if teachers can share with one another new perspectives and classroom practices that work which can be put into use in the future. In essence, we have teachers who come from a wide range of backgrounds and it is always helpful to have an ecosystem to facilitate mutual professional development moving forward.