Pedagogical Practices Essay

Pedagogical Practices Essay.


This paper provides an insight on the effective pedagogical practices that can be used in the children learning. Some of these practices include the incorporation of ICT in early childhood education and some of effective direct instructional strategies that can have an impact in the learning process of children. Five common learning outcomes for children are identified. In addition, the paper outlines characteristics of effective teaching that contribute to effective teaching. Furthermore, the concept of culture in early childhood education is also discussed.

Keywords: Effective teaching, Pedagogy


Early childhood education in Australia falls under the responsibility of each state. The approach in each State towards early childhood education is different. The different States have different school starting ages, nomenclature, approaches in the testing and evaluation of the children, policies, support services and both public and private funded childhood education and care programmes. In Australia, children in preschool and childcare are usually placed under the funding and policy of the health sector, whereas those children aged between 5 and 8 years are placed under the school sector.

Amendments by the government have resulted to the combination of the health sector provision and childcare policy to the education sector. Childcare in the States of Victoria has been moved to the Department of Human Services to the Department of Early Childhood Education (DEEW, 2009). In Australia, pedagogy and learning have been put within the context of a developmental paradigm that is widely influenced by developmental (Sumsion et al., 2009).

In the past, the school segment has been involved in implementing a discipline-focused criterion together with the child-centred approach to learning and pedagogy. The childcare sector mostly concerns itself with the child, whereas the school sector mainly focuses on the implementation of the curriculum (Church, et al., 2010). Some of the efforts by the Australian government in promoting preschool education include the investing of a million dollars in to the research and development of innovative practices in childcare and preschools. In addition, additional funds have been directed towards the development and research of early childhood programmes.

Furthermore, the Australian government is developing a nationwide curriculum for early childhood development that will be implemented nationwide (DEECD, 2009). Pedagogy refers to the correct use of teaching strategies. In addition, pedagogical practices are those set of principles that facilitate and support effective teaching. Use of pedagogy standards assists in the teachers and childhood professionals in achieving their goals (Fleet, Patterson & Robertson, 2006). According to the Victorian Framework, five outcomes for children can be identified. These include identity, sense of community, communication, learning and well-being (VCAA, 2000).

Effective Teaching

Effective teaching is dependent on certain outcomes. These outcomes include the whether the students learn something as the result. Despite the introduction of teaching strategies that have been described as effective, use of these strategies will produce different outcomes in the different learning situations (City et al., 2009). In these scenarios, the teacher will be confronted with the idea of developing instructional strategies and behaviours, which are effective practices as well as combining these strategies at the appropriate time to the individual students. In addition, the teacher has to apply of these strategies depending on the different learning situations and what is the teacher’s goal for students learning outcome (City et al., 2009).

Effective teaching’s primary purpose is the attainment of academic knowledge of the student. In addition, effective teaching, as a whole encompasses the attainment of skill or knowledge on a subject of interest by a student, students feeling good about themselves, students obeying the society laws and students liking the school (Alter & Coggshall, 2009). Besides ensuring increased academic achievement, the use of instructional strategies should not produce affective loss. Moreover, the instructional strategy that produces positive affective results is the most effective teaching strategy. In order to achieve effective teaching fully, vital understanding of the effective teaching practices, the students, teaching contexts, coherent decision making and learning environments is significant (Dahlberg, Moss & Pence, 1999).

Characteristics of Effective Teaching

Effective teaching involves effective communicating, planning, managing and evaluating the actual process of instructing. Reflective teaching plays a major role in making of informed decision relating to the effective teaching strategies (Mabrina, Church & Tayler, 2010). Through reflective teaching, teachers can be able to do a critical analysis their actions and their decisions. Reflective teaching allows teachers to foresee the impact of the teaching methods and in the process may make relevant changes in improving their strategies. In addition, the teacher gains a deeper understanding by scrutinizing the goals of the teaching practice. According to the DEECD (2009), children’s learning becomes advanced when they experience interactions with highly effective childhood professionals. Application of reflective teaching allows the childhood teachers to promote practices are supported by evidence to be doing well in supporting and developing children learning (Osterman, 1990).

Furthermore, reflective teaching will allow the childhood professionals ability to challenge and develop new practices that they discover to be effective. In the process of reflective teaching the childhood professionals, improve their knowledge and skills concerning early childhood education. Teachers have to have a comprehensive understanding of the learning values of development the children to cater for the variety of and diversity of children in a classroom setting (Ashmna and Elkins, 2009). This allows the teacher to select the best effective teaching strategies. Consequently, this will necessitate the need of the use of a various instructional resources and technology. To be effective teachers must have adequate knowledge on the subject, which they propose to teach. This includes professional knowledge about teaching in general, pedagogical knowledge about the concepts and theories of effective teaching and pedagogical content knowledge concerning the different teaching approaches and methods.

Another important t characteristic of effective teaching involves the use of a variety of teaching strategies. Use of a variety of teaching techniques stimulates the student s during lesson activities and may encourage students to participate actively in the lesson. This especially true when dealing with children who are normally intrigued by different things and hence in the process may enjoy the lessons. The advantage is that children have inquisitive minds and anything new to them encourage exploratory mind (Rinaldi, 2006). Furthermore, proper assigning of tasks taking into account the time factor will provide the children with adequate time for learning new ideas. Various ways can be used to increase children engagement in learning activities. The teacher can monitor the work of the children as the progress and make comments and appreciation of their efforts.

In addition, preparation of a daily schedule that gives a description of the activities that the children will undertake will assist in reducing time wastage activities such as giving directions. Furthermore, individual assignments given to the child should be interesting and easy to them as well as different to what the other children are doing. This promotes their confidence in being able to carry out activities on their own. The children should not only be involved in just doing things in class as a way of ensuring children success rate. The activities should be meaningful and have a relation to what the teacher is planning on teaching. Planning of these activities should replicate the capability and interests of the children. If a child is successful in one day, chances are that the child will replicate the same success in the days to follow.

Effective Pedagogical Practices

Cognitive Construction

Cognitive structures refer to the patterns of the mental or physical actions that bring about specific acts of acumen. These are conditioned by stages of development. An assumption using the Piaget theory is that children are natural and active developers of their own understanding. Growth in a child results to the integration of abstract structures in their understanding. Using Piaget theories on child development, the teacher can be able to facilitate developmental change in a child by assisting the child to find contradictions using hid or prior knowledge and understanding.

Culturally Relevant Pedagogy

The Victorian Framework for early childhood development t recognizes the fact that culture plays a significant t role in the shaping the learning and development outcomes of children. The childhood professional use of culture empowers the children both socially and emotionally. An example of how the Victorian Framework incorporates culture-based pedagogy is in the Aboriginal culture. Respecting and learning the value of this culture will assist in ensuring that the Victorian children have a sense of belonging in the community. Culture, in this case, is used as a vehicle for learning. Moreover, incorporating of children’s books that outlines the different cultures will assist the children in developing their own personal identities related to their different cultures. In addition, the children can be able to understand the relationships that exist between Australia and Asia and in the process grow up understanding the Asian culture. (ACARA, 2010)

Creating Relationships

Fostering relationships among the children will assist in building trust, understanding thereby creating a peaceful learning environment for the children. The children strengths’ can be increased by encouraging the children to talk about the family histories. Incorporation of this strategy will assist the children develop social and persona competence as they learn to mange and understand their relationships. This is a key aspect of the Australian Curriculum, Assessment, and Reporting Authority (2010). Furthermore, the children will be able to start friendship relationship with one another, work effectively as a team, and be able to make responsible decisions (ACARA, 2010).

Use of Technology

In recent times, the use of computer games and simulations has a possibility of improving how children learn. Early childhood professionals can incorporate an assortment of strategies using technology. These include the use of a learner-centred approach, promoting cognitive activity, and focusing on learning outcomes. A learner-centred approach will help in assisting the natural process through which children learn. In addition, this approach will allow a better understanding of the children’s cognitive processing and, therefore, affect the learning outcomes of the child. In focusing on promoting the cognitive activity, video games cause the children to be more active.

This allows teachers to recognize how the different aspects of the computer software affect the learning process of the child. Consequently, measuring the learning outcomes of the games can help in accessing the level of comprehension in a child. In addition, use of reading software can help determine what children learn from the use of the software. Use of ICT is a key component in the Australian curriculum (ACARA, 2010). Direct Instruction

Hunt and Touzel (2009) suggest that the use of direct instruction strategies allows teachers to be able to organize and present material to the children. Direct instructional strategies are characterized by a certain level of predictability of the children responses. This allows teachers to be to respond with ease and in the process save time. The teacher best applies direct teaching for children in the learning of procedures and skills. Teachers use the direct instructional strategies to present information through which the children use their prior knowledge and give feedback to the teacher. Direct instruction strategies ensure the close monitoring of the children’s outcomes and ensure effective use of classroom organization and management methods. The direct instruction process consists of modelling, direct practice, guided practice and independent practice. In modelling, the skill to be imparted on children is performed by the teacher. This normally involves thinking aloud so that the children can grasp the concept.

In direct practice, the teacher uses questions through a variety of steps that allow the children to understand the reason behind every step, whereas, in guide practice, the children generate questions working through various steps while the teacher observes, guides them, and provides a response to the questions. Lastly, in independent practice, the students have gained the ability to work on their own and can be able to do more questions without much assistance from the teacher. Examples of direct instructional strategies include explicit teaching, drill, demonstration, lecture presentation and teacher led guide discussion. However, lecture presentations are not effective in teaching children.

In explicit teaching, the teacher first gain the attention of the children then provides information, which the children can use to provide feedback to the teacher. Use of demonstrations in teaching children is a more effective method the use of direct instruction. In demonstrations, the children can observe how the teacher carries out a certain task, which helps to increase the attention of the children. Furthermore, using demonstrations allow the children to look at the actual activity rather than hearing about something they cannot see. An example of a demonstration that is normally used in teaching children is the teacher showing them how to tie their laces. Most of these demonstrations are explanatory in nature (Moss et al., 2006).

ACARA (2010). The Shape of the Australian Curriculum. Sydney: Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority Australian Education Ministers. Retrieved from Alter, J & Coggshall, J. G. (2009). Teaching as a Clinical Practice Profession: Implications for Teacher Preparation and State Policy. Retrieved from
Ashmna, A. & Elkins, J. (2009). Education for Inclusion and Diversity. NSW: Pearson. Church, A., Deans, J., Raban, B. & Margetts, K. (2010). The Early Years Learning Frameworks in Practice. Melbourne: Teaching Solutions.

City, E. A., Elmore, R. F., Fiarman, S. E. and Teitel, L. (2009). Instructional Rounds in Education. A Network Approach to Improving Teaching and Learning. Harvard University: Harvard Education Press.

DEECD. (2009). Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework. Early Childhood Strategy Division: Melbourne, Australia. Retrieved from Dahlberg, G., Moss, P., & Pence, A. (1999). Beyond Quality in Early Childhood Education and Care. Philadelphia: Falmer Press.

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Framework for Australia. Retrieved form
Fleet, A., Patterson, C. & Robertson, J. (2006). Insights: Behind early childhood Pedagogical Documentation. NSW: Pademelon Press.
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Osterman, K, F. (1990). Reflective Practice: A New Agenda for Education. Education and Urban Society, 22 (2) 133 – 152.
Sumsion, J., Barnes, S., Cheeseman, S., Harrison, L., Kennedy, A., & Stonehouse, A. (2009). Insider perspectives on Developing Belonging, Being & Becoming: The Early Years Frameworks for Australia. Australian Journal of Early Childhood. 24, (4), 4-13. Rinaldi, C. (2006). In Dialogue with Reggio Emilia. Oxon: Routledge. Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (2000). Victorian Essential Learning Standards, Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority. Retrieved from

Pedagogical Practices Essay

Pedagogy versus Andragogy Essay

Pedagogy versus Andragogy Essay.

When modern people use the words pedagogy and andragogy, I sense there is a meaning implied that is understood by our wider culture. In the case of pedagogy, the general definition implied the connection of the teaching by the teacher, to the learning of the student especially to the child. There is little doubt that the most dominant form of instruction in America and Europe is pedagogy, or what some people refer to as traditional, teacher-directed approaches, or didactic. Pedagogy literally means leading children.

Pedagogy can also be thought of as “teacher-centered or directive” learning. The competing idea in terms of instructing adult learners, and one that gathered momentum within the past three decades, has been dubbed andragogy. Andragogy is a term coined to refer to the science or art of teaching adults or can be thought of as “learner-centered or directed. ” The beliefs of teaching encompasses not just teaching per se but as well as learning — specific knowledge, beliefs, and skills.

Learning is the process of acquiring attitudes or values, skills, through study, knowledge, experience, or teaching, that causes a change of behavior that is measurable, specified and persistent or allows an individual to formulate a new mental construct or revise a prior mental construct. A good teacher in a given field uses a variety of methods and materials in order to impart knowledge of a curriculum to the students. Informally, teaching is the process of learning how things work including numbers, reading and language that are taught by parents and other members of the student’s culture.

There has been a plethora of journals, magazines, books, and digests in the field of education that addresses these areas. Such literature addresses the teaching practices, with subjects that include testing, motivation, game playing, lectures, scheduling, record keeping, bullying, seating arrangements, interests and computer access. However, the most important factors in any teacher’s effectiveness are the interaction with students and the knowledge and personality of the teacher. Without the knowledge of the teacher there can be no learning except the very slow process of self teaching.

The best teachers are able to translate knowledge of a subject, good judgment, experience, and wisdom into a significant knowledge of a subject that is understood and retained by the student. It is their ability to understand a subject well enough they can convey its essence to a new generation of students that is needed by all teachers. The goal is establish a foundation of knowledge base that allows the student to build on as they are exposed to different life experiences. The passing of knowledge from generation to generation allows the student to grow into a useful member of society.

The purpose of this study is to provide the interested reader with some background information regarding both instructional forms. The study includes the history of both pedagogy and andragogy; how they came about and who were the philosophers or educators that are responsible in putting this learning to be used. Malcolm Knowles and other brilliant philosophers theorized that methods used to teach children are often not the most effective means of teaching adults. Pedagogy Pedagogy is the art or science of teaching and it is also sometimes referred to as the correct use of teaching strategies.

Brazilian Paulo Freire, one of the most influential educators of the 20th century, referred to his method of teaching adults as “critical pedagogy”. Critical pedagogy is a teaching approach which attempts to help students question and challenge domination, and the beliefs and practices that dominate. In other words, it is a theory and practice of helping students achieve critical consciousness. In this tradition the teacher works to lead students to question ideologies and practices considered oppressive (including those at school), and encourage liberator collective and individual responses to the actual conditions of their own lives.

In the pedagogic model, teachers assume responsibility for making decisions about what will be learned, how it will be learned, and when it will be learned. Conner stated that (Conner, M. L. “Andragogy and Pedagogy. ” Ageless Learner, 1997-2004. ): “The great teachers of ancient times, from Confucius to Plato, didn’t pursue such authoritarian techniques. Major differences exist between what we know of the great teachers’ styles, yet they all saw learning as a process of active inquiry, not passive reception. Considering this, it is surprising that teacher-focused learning later came to dominate formal education.

According to Knowles (M. S. Knowles, 1984 The adult learner: A neglected species. Houston: Gulf Publishing. ) : “The pedagogical model of instruction was originally developed in the monastic schools of Europe in the middle Ages. Young boys were received into the monasteries and taught by monks according to a system of instruction that required these children to be obedient, faithful, and efficient servants of the church. From this origin developed the tradition of pedagogy, which later spread to the secular schools of Europe and America and became and remains the dominant form of instruction.

Pedagogy is derived from the Greek word “paid”, meaning child plus “agogos”, meaning leading. Thus, pedagogy has been defined as the art and science of teaching children. In the pedagogical model, the teacher has full responsibility for making decisions about what will be learned, how it will be learned, when it will be learned, and if the material has been learned. Pedagogy, or teacher-directed instruction as it is commonly known, places the student in a submissive role requiring obedience to the teacher’s instructions. It is based on the assumption that learners need to know only what the teacher teaches them.

The result is a teaching and learning situation that actively promotes dependency on the instructor. ” John Dewey believed formal schooling was falling short of its potential. Dewey emphasized learning through various activities rather than traditional teacher-focused curriculum. He believed children learned more from guided experience than authoritarian instruction. He ascribed to a learner-focused education philosophy. He held that learning is life not just preparation for life (Conner, M. L. “Andragogy and Pedagogy. ” Ageless Learner, 1997-2004).

Nowadays, the pedagogical model has been applied equally to the teaching of children and adults, and in a sense, is a contradiction in terms. The reason is that as adults mature, they become increasingly independent and responsible for their own actions. They are often motivated to learn by a sincere desire to solve immediate problems in their lives. Additionally, they have an increasing need to be self-directing. In many ways the pedagogical model does not account for such developmental changes on the part of adults, and thus produces tension, resentment, and resistance in individuals.

Andragogy The development and growth of andragogy as an alternative model of instruction has helped to remedy this situation and improve the teaching of adults. But this change did not occur overnight. In fact, an important event took place some thirty years ago that affected the direction of adult education in North America and, to some extent, elsewhere as well. Andragogy as a system of ideas, concepts, and approaches to adult learning was introduced to adult educators in the United States by Malcolm Knowles. His contributions to this system have influenced the thinking of countless educators of adults.

Knowles’ dialogue, debate, and subsequent writings related to andragogy have been a healthy stimulant to some of the growth of the adult education field during the past thirty years. Andragogy, initially defined as the art and science of helping adults learn, has taken on a broader meaning since Knowles’ first edition. The term currently defines an alternative to pedagogy and refers to learner-focused education for people of all ages. In practical terms, andragogy means that instruction for adults needs to focus more on the process and less on the content being taught.

Strategies such as case studies, role playing, simulations, and self-evaluation are most useful. Instructors adopt a role of facilitator or resource rather than lecturer or grader. The first use of the term “andragogy” to catch the widespread attention of adult educators was in 1968, when Knowles, then a professor of adult education at Boston University, introduced the term then spelled androgogy through a journal article. In a 1970 book which is the second edition that published in 1980, he defined the term as the art and science of helping adults learn.

His thinking had changed to the point that in the 1980 edition he suggested that andragogy is simply another model of assumptions about adult learners to be used alongside the pedagogical model of assumptions, thereby providing two alternative models for testing out the assumptions as to their ‘fit’ with particular situations. Furthermore, the models are probably most useful when seen not as dichotomous but rather as two ends of a spectrum, with a realistic assumption about learners in a given situation falling in between the two ends.

The andragogical model as conceived by Knowles is predicated on four basic assumptions about learners, all of which have some relationship to our notions about a learner’s ability, need, and desire to take responsibility for learning. First, their self-concept moves from dependency to independency or self-directedness. Second, they accumulate a reservoir of experiences that can be used as a basis on which to build learning. Third, their readiness to learn becomes increasingly associated with the developmental tasks of social roles.

Fourth, their time and curricular perspectives change from postponed to immediacy of application and from subject-centeredness to performance-centeredness. Similarities exist between the meanings of the two words— pedagogy and andragogy. It is clear that they also differ, for one thing andragogy, at least from Knowles perspective refers only to adult learners and adult learning, while pedagogy, in its most expanded definition, includes adults and children.

Another difference, I believe, is that pedagogy is sympathetic to the banking system of education that Freire refers to a teacher which has the knowledge and deposits it into the mind of the student. At the other end of the spectrum, andragogy implies that while the teacher may have knowledge and resources that the learner doesn’t possess, it is up to the self-directed learner to decide what is worth learning, and then to avail him or herself to what can be known or understood by them, voluntarily.

The teacher does not “deposit” or bank the knowledge in the learner, instead, the teacher facilitates the learner in trying to reach the goals which they have set out for themselves. Responsibility for learning belongs with the learner, and the teacher tries to balance the process for the student through resource support and guidance. Another difference that I felt was inferred by the two ideas was this pedagogy, lacked a sense of learning freedom and responsibility to learn into that freedom, while andragogy seemed to invite more ownership of how one can know what one cares to know.

Conclusion There seems to be a distinction about the shared quality of learning. Pedagogical tracts, however, set a tone that keeps the teacher wearing the teaching hat and the learner wearing his or hers. A sense of power between teacher and learner seems less balanced than it might in an adragogously charged atmosphere, where collegiality has a greater opportunity for birthing itself, thus the potential for creating more spontaneous space for sparking new ideas and ways of knowing.

On the other hand, andragogy offers the philosophy and action of reciprocal learning events, where both teacher as well as student enjoys the exchanging of roles every now and then. Learning and teaching are not exclusive to the individual or the group. Everyone teaches and everyone learns. Knowles’ theory of andragogy is an attempt to develop a theory specifically for adult learning. Knowles emphasizes that adults are self-directed and expect to take responsibility for decisions. Adult learning programs must accommodate this fundamental aspect.

Andragogy makes the following assumptions about the design of learning — Adults need to know why they need to learn something and they need to learn experientially; adults approach learning as problem-solving, and adults learn best when the topic is of immediate value. In the information age, the implications of a move from teacher-centered to learner-centered education are staggering. Postponing or suppressing this move will slow our ability to learn new technology and gain competitive advantage.

Pedagogy versus Andragogy Essay