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Compare and contrast the role of the teacher in the two key stages you have experienced so far.

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Compare and contrast the role of the teacher in the two key stages you have experienced so far. The role of the teacher in the two key stages is both similar and different in many ways. These can be established through a detailed analysis and observation of the teachers' roles both inside and outside the classroom setting. One means of doing this is to look at the teachers' roles against the heading for the standards for QTS. These headings are Professional Values and Practice, Knowledge and Understanding, Planning, Assessment and Teaching and Class management. Please see Appendix. For each heading the similarities and differences in roles for the two key stages will be considered. Both teachers exhibit strong professional values and practice. Pollard (2002) stresses the importance of being aware of every pupil's 'unique biography' p. 82. Both teachers observed have considered the diversity of the children they teach in respect of their social, cultural, linguistic, religious and ethnic backgrounds and are concerned with their development as lifelong learners. Both teachers demonstrate and promote positive values, attitudes and behaviour in their classrooms. Pollard (2002) explains that 'the concept of fairness is vitally important' p.119. Although the teachers use different means to promote the positive atmosphere, the values are very similar. Both recognise the role of parents and carers in a child's learning. Pollard (2002) suggests that 'if a process for supportive knowledge exchange is established (...with parents...), the potential for enhancing children's learning is enormous' p.85. ...read more.


At Key stage 1, behaviour rewards are likely to be more individualistic and in Key stage 2 the teacher relies on peer pressure to encourage good behaviour by the use of a table points system. This reflects understandings of children's development; they move steadily from being egocentric towards being increasingly socially aware. Both teachers respond to behaviour issues in a supportive and positive way and are consistent in their behaviour expectations, so that children begin to respond to them. When planning lessons both teachers set clear ILOs which are made clear to the children. However, in Key stage 2 ILOs become more technical, a wider vocabulary is used and ILOs are more likely to be displayed. This is due to the increase responsibility children take for their own learning, as in Key stage 2 the teachers' role is to involve children in their own target setting and assessment of learning. This is seen in the differentiation the teacher uses. The observed year 5 teacher overtly talked about his grouping systems and lets the children know how they are doing and congratulated those who he had moved up into a higher ability group. He also encouraged children to classify the types of learners they are. Both teachers use assessment details to inform future planning, to highlight areas that need further development or areas that could be extended to reflect learning. ...read more.


At Key stage 2 the teacher is able to introduce monitors in the classroom organisation, to teach responsibility in the classroom and citizenship skills, so that children make an increasing investment in maintaining the environment. Use of space is also different. In Key stage 1 teachers organise the children to sit on the carpet during whole class work, so they are relaxed and comfortable, to aid their shorter attention span. In key stage 1 congratulations are public and are celebrated in the class but the key stage 2 teacher is more likely to praise privately. Docking (1990 p.49) puts it that, 'with older primary children, a high quality of interaction is of greater importance than praise itself.' The Key stage 2 teacher uses positive interactions, such as humour and class games, to create a positive class atmosphere in which children want to behave appropriately. The role of the teacher in the key stages are often extremely similar in principle but the teacher uses a different approach to skilfully adapt these principles to the age range they are working with, to reflect increasing independence and self-regulation. Comparisons of this type, however, must be used with caution, as each teacher has a particular personality and each class of children differs in terms of its diverse culture, ethnicity, ability, language, maturity, interest range and social background. Therefore, no one class is the same and ultimately, it is the teacher's role to adapt their approach to the needs of the children they are working with using the same basic principles outlined in the standards for QTS. ...read more.

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