Teaching in the United States
Americans spend on average around thirty percent of their lives in school. In order for this time to be beneficial, we need to have sufficient teaching. However in many schools today, the teachers will only teach a student enough to pass the test. Students will not really gain any knowledge on the topic. This is because after the test, the information will not be retained in their memory.
This is shown when students move into college. Forty percent of college students do not do well their first year because they are not properly prepared (Unprepared for College). Even those who graduate at the top of their class often end up failing because they are not properly prepared. Adolescents in America need to be taught to apply the information from the class rather than just memorizing words and answers. This is a major problem in almost every school today and needs to be resolved. Teachers in America often do not compare to those in other countries.
Judith Kleinfeld, director of the Northern Studies program and professor of psychology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks states that the quality of American teachers does not measure up to those in countries that outperform the U.S. In these countries, only the higher quality students can go into the teaching career and teachers are viewed with high esteem (Kleinfeld). This strategy has proved to work based on international achievement scores in these countries compared with the U.S. The job of a teacher is a difficult task to achieve and requires patience and hard work.
This hard work is not often credited to teachers in America where teaching is viewed as a low class and simple job when in reality, it should not be. This is why many teachers do not often fulfill their job in helping students to learn life lessons and to be able to apply their knowledge to the real world rather than just onto a piece of paper. Changing the view of teachers in society can help to motivate them to influence young learners to apply knowledge and be successful in life. This problem can also be resolved by giving teachers better education to prepare them more for the 21st century classroom and to be more up to date with the latest teaching methods for every type of student. Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education for the U.S.
states that this poor preparation of teachers for the modern classroom prevents students from reaching their full academic potential (Navarrette). If teachers were to be better educated on the newer ways to reach adolescents, the students would be able to excel in life and gain deeper knowledge than by simply being able to bubble in the correct answer choices. In order to obtain a teaching license in Minnesota, instructors must pass a skills test (Press). This will help to ensure that they know the information they will be portraying to students and understand it enough to get through to those who may have difficulties.To test if this information is being taught in the right way, exams should be made on applying knowledge rather than just recalling information. Once graded, these test scores can then be traced back to the teachers.
Those instructors who have exceptional averages can reveal their teaching methods to fellow coworkers in their community. This will help to spread useful methods of teaching and displaying information in a deeper way to students and the keys to success in the 21st century classroom. Adolescents could gain the proper knowledge and high level thinking skills in order to be successful in college and throughout their everyday lives. A recent survey shows that about two thirds of Americans don’t have high confidence in their teachers due to previous experience with one (Peterson). If teachers can gain better and more up to date education on how to reach children, they will exceed at their jobs and have more confidence on their ability to reach each and every pupil.
People will be able to be more confident in teachers and their career enough to view them more highly, solving the problem that teachers are not viewed high enough in America to be motivated to teach to the best of their abilities. Better education and motivation is the key to changing teachers in a positive way for both their role performance and their stance in society. Another way to ensure optimum education for students is by allowing for teachers to be evaluated by the children in their classroom. The students are the ones who are experiencing the course. They would be the ones who know the most about what it is like and how much actual knowledge they have obtained. This will be another way to help to ensure that students learn this deeper knowledge and are not just taught enough to pass the test but so that they can carry this knowledge throughout their lives.
As one can see the quality of teachers in America is a very serious issue and it needs to be solved so that we can compete in the world marketplace.