In response to Mike’s comments on:
Thanks for your response. I agree with your views that such change will only happen slowly. I have been a teacher since 1985, and have experienced a lot of changes in teaching and learning practices during the last 23 years. Since 2000, I have been doing on-the-job training whereas there are practically no physical classes as such as the Universities. I started with zero student (trainee) in 2000 to a few hundreds for the past years. What I found was a fundamental shift in the learning paradigm, where learning is the key to education, rather than teaching. I know my idealogy will be vehemently opposed by other instructivists, as well as other professional teachers, where they would feel threatened or might worry that they would lose their jobs. Imagine, if everyone is learning on their own, what is the role of the teacher? I shared such feelings in 2000, but has now been totally convinced that such thing would only happen if teachers are unwilling to accept and adapt to changes. That is there is still an important role for every teacher to play, only that teachers must be flexible and proactive in meeting the learner’s needs. In other words, I think best practice in teaching is based on a learner centred approach, where learner’s needs must come first. Without learners, why employ teachers? And without teachers, who would be guiding the learners (especially the kids and teenagers) the “right” values? So, in summary, teachers must share their experience and knowledge with learners by putting learners first. Remember, at some time, we were the learners, did we learn from our teachers? For me, I must admit that I learn best from those teachers who are empathetic, and willing to understand my needs. These are just my personal reflections, but I hope other teachers could understand why we are moving in such directions – towards a learner centred model of teaching and learning. Is teaching still a noble profession? What do you see will be the future of teachers?