Reflection: The Road to Instructional Improvement


Teaching is undeniably a demanding and often stressful profession. Unlike many other occupations that allow moments of solitude or mental relaxation, teaching rarely provides such opportunities. There always seems to be students or colleagues nearby, leaving little time for personal reflection and self-assessment. I firmly believe that exceptional teachers strive for excellence out of genuine passion. Teaching allows one to either perform the bare minimum or pursue greatness. It emanates from a heartfelt desire to empower all students to achieve their best. Bearing this in mind, here are some reflective points to consider. Take a moment or two, engage in quiet introspection, and establish personal goals. Nourish your internal motivation to improve, which will inevitably benefit both you and your students. Perhaps, you might even become the memorable teacher in a student’s lifelong journey! Here are a few reflection points to get you started.

  1. Have you thoroughly planned your lesson? Did you mentally rehearse it beforehand? Mental preparation instills confidence in the seamless flow of your lesson. The more comfortable you are with the content, the more you can devote your energy to aiding and interacting with students.
  2. Are your lesson plans designed to guide students toward standards and objectives? Understanding the ‘why’ behind teaching provides direction and clarity for students regarding their learning objectives. Clarity in expectations enhances student focus.
  3. Do you instill the importance of learning in your students? Are you emphasizing the significance of repetition and practice, even if it seems monotonous at times? It’s crucial to remind students that they utilize overlearned skills and avoid those they lack confidence in.
  4. Are you observant of students encountering challenges with their tasks? Students often need subtle yet relevant support. While it’s easy to focus on skilled students, every student benefits from discreet yet robust assistance.
  5. Do you actively move and position yourself during lessons? Purposeful movement allows you to attend to students needing assistance or reminders to stay on track. Teachers who actively move provide more feedback compared to those solely observing from the front. Moving around and engaging with students is a critical step in managing a class effectively.
  6. Is your feedback process-oriented or product-oriented? Process-oriented feedback centers on skill performance, while product-oriented feedback focuses solely on the outcome. Reinforcing outcomes without considering technique implies that skill execution doesn’t matter. Incorrect techniques learned early can be challenging to rectify later on.

Teaching is no walk in the park—it keeps you on your toes. But you know what? The best teachers chase greatness fueled by genuine passion. It’s about lighting up the path for all students to shine their brightest. So take a breather, do some soul-searching, and set personal goals. Fuel your inner drive to get better, not just for you but for your students too. Embrace these tips, make them yours, and see how you become the teacher everyone remembers on their educational journey!

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One Response

  1. This year I have really focused on the “why” of our lessons and identifying that “why” with my students. Doing this has allowed me and the students to connect more clearly to our topics and engaged more students in learning.

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