Unit 008/L4 Roles, responsibilities and relationships in lifelong learning 1. Understand own role and responsibilities in lifelong learning Teaching involves roles, responsibilities and boundaries that reflect on teaching and learners. Key aspects of legislations, codes of practice, rules are to be understood and applied is required to ensure that the teaching/training cycle is structured and delivered within all legislative and regulatory process. After my PTLLS course, I am hoping to teach French for 16 years old and over students. 1.1 Teaching incurs duty of care that is predominant as in all education institutions; this includes all legal obligations in order to provide a safe teaching environment for learners as well as teachers. Health And Safety at Work Act 1974 is the primary piece of legislation that has to be applied in any workplace in order to protect my learners and myself on the premises and on outings, a risk assessment has to be carried out to ensure safety to learners e.g. bags secured under tables, leads tidied that could result in tripping hazards. It is also required to acknowledge all regulations that are involved into teaching such as Equality Act (2010) joins race, sex, disability and other discrimination aspects within one legislation piece. Data Protection Act 2008 is to be applied; learners will give the teacher personal details in confidence and expect them to be kept away. Copyrights, Designs and Patents Act 1999 establish guidelines for the use of printed materials in a learning environment, nowadays the use of internet intends free downloads and viewing. However, the act has to be applied when printing out and giving handouts. Teachers have responsibilities towards the OFSTED and any awarding bodies the institute might refer to, it is required to supply excellent instruction. The IFL has introduced a code of practice (2008) which involves integrity, responsibility, care, respect, professional practice, criminal offence disclosure and responsibility during Institute investigations which has to be respected by teachers. The children act (2004) provides support to the Every Child Matters and is usually taken into account when teaching; there are five criteria to apply: Be healthy, stay safe, enjoy and achieve, make a positive contribution and achieve economic well being. It is compulsory to acknowledge all these legislations, and often check if any update occurs, in addition to these it is expected to undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service check (previously CRB) and it is also recommended to register to the IFL to
establish professional status.
1.2 (Gravells,2012:54) “Diversity is about valuing and respecting the differences in students, regardless of age, ability and/or circumstances, or any other individual characteristics they may have. If you have two or more students, you will experience diversity. You may have a mixed group of students with different levels of experience who are aiming to achieve the same qualification but at a different level. You could therefore set different activities and targets for the different assessment criteria of the qualification”.
All learners are entitled to receive teaching based on inclusion, equality and diversity; Inclusion is about involving all learners in different activities and ensures not to exclude anyone regardless of any reasons. Equality is about learner’s right to attend and take part in a course/lesson regardless of their gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, disability, sexual orientation or age; expectations are to treat any aspect fairly and impartially and be non judgemental (Gravells, 2012:53) “In the past, equality has often been described as everyone being the same or having the same opportunities. Nowadays, it can be described as everyone being different, but having equal rights.” Diversity is to identify and value the differences in people by providing a safe, inclusive environment to learning where learners are worthy, respected in any way. All teachers are required to assess their learners to identify their needs but also to acknowledge their abilities, their diversity, their needs knowing that they all require the same qualifications, their learning will be somewhat different. Good teaching would involve an impartial judgement, keep personal views, shouldn’t privilege any students, ensure no one is disadvantaged, make sensible comments non hurtful and unoffending to any groups or individuals, respect ideas and not be intrusive to the lesson, listen to the learners so everyone would enrich from their own experiences knowing that it would also give positive and enthusiastic learning and motivate the most shy and reserved learners. The use of handouts /presentations enclosing pictures /texts of all types of people would also project positivity so everyone would “blend in”. Providing appropriate resources to everyone, E.g. if a
learner has ADHD it would be benefic to suggest short tasks that are varied, allow him/her to move around, speak directly to him/her often to help focusing on the task, seat him/her next to a model learner who could help the learner with tasks and help communicating, have the learner reviewed often so you can praise often would give them confidence and motivation. On the other hand if the learner is disrupting the class, it might be necessary to seek advice or help from a competent body. E.g. a learner could be dyslexic as is it the most common learning difficulty condition; a reduction in reading tasks is necessary as well as producing more visual resources, lessen time based tasks, using colour codes flashcards or handouts would promote self confidence and continuous progress at their individual pace. Time is a limitation to these implications and the teacher cannot take cater for one person and disadvantage others.
1.3 (Geoff Petty, 2009:530) “Each learner is unique and has individual needs. If the needs of our learners are discovered and met, the chances of success are greatly increased.” The training cycle helps to evaluate roles and responsibilities in lifelong learning and to establish a complete strategy to teaching, there are five criteria as follow: Identify needs of learners
Design/planning of lesson
Assessment of learners
Evaluation of learners and myself
In all courses and lessons learners are to be assessed /interviewed to identify any barriers that would occur, any special needs learners with specific learning styles, suggesting an ILP (individual learning plan); This would ensure the way of instructions is specific to their requirements, e.g. if teaching learners from travel and tourism sector, it would be appropriate to design lessons around that subject to meet the learners needs. Ensuring learners are on the right course and tackle any barriers there might be by suggesting any alongside courses they might need to pursue the initial course. It also could be a money issue so the teacher has to find out about any grants or finances available to them. A learner might have personal issues and teacher’s help might be needed to ensure she or he gets help from social services and other services by talking to the line manager. Although all the above seem essential, time could be a limitation and a teacher has to bear in mind not to deprive a learner to the advantage of another. Once needs identified, design or plan lesson are set up using proper resources to the course the learners have taken, making sure different learning styles are included ,they are known as (Gravells, 2012:31) VARK (Visual, Auditory, Reading, Kinaesthetic) as using the four principles would help your learners focus and interact during the lesson, then delivering the lesson based on the above, assess learners making sure every points have been assimilated by everyone then evaluate teacher’s own performance by getting feedback. Every learner is different from one another and an adaptation to the teaching styles is necessary to become within reach to the learners using various and divers’ resources that is appropriate to meet their needs .The results in implicating and committing to the concept will bring enrichment to teaching and will bring confidence, trust and value to learners.
1.4 Some learners might have learning difficulties such as ADHD/ADD, dyslexia, dyspraxia/DCD, dyscalculia, APD, visual impairments or hearing impairments, disabilities etc…,or have a language barrier , in order to provide the appropriate teaching to meet their needs, an initial assessment is essential, it could be processed individually or done in group and could be used as an icebreaker at the beginning of the lesson /course, the teacher then sets targets and ILPs for any individual in need of a specific learning, it also could be a material need such as the use of lifts for wheelchairs ,assistive learning device for hearing impaired learners ,seating in front row for visually impaired and learning difficulties learners, ensuring the right resources are used and if can’t be handled due to complexity seek help from competent body e.g. sign language specialist if the learner is deaf. All of the above are to be considered so each learner will progress to their very own targets bearing in mind that the teacher has to ensure that lessons remain manageable.
2. Understand the relationships between the teaching role and other professional roles.
2.1(Gravells, 2012:14) “You will have professional boundaries within which to work and it’s important not to overstep these by becoming too personal with your students. Boundaries are about knowing where your role as a teacher stops and working within the limits of that role.” In teaching boundaries and barriers are encountered, it is essential to good teaching not to cross these and stay professional with any issues, the learner may experience problems outside the course he/she is taking such as welfare, funding, personal circumstances, health so in order for that learner to attend your course in the best possible way and to privilege his/her learning, the teacher has to seek for any help that could be provided by external services e.g. social services, Citizen Advisor Bureau, Job Centre, doctor, appropriate funding, counsellors, etc…
But also acknowledge when not to cross boundaries, as once the learner is referred not to interfere with the service referred to, not to influence decisions and not to intrude into their personal lives, it would be inappropriate to a teacher to phone a learner for futile matters and it would be best to discuss, keeping professionalism in mind, the matter in the next lesson. A teacher must not look into the learners finances and must only refer if learner has a need. Teacher’s behaviour has to be within the code of practice and follow it as advice. If a learner has language barriers and isn’t to the level required for the course, then a referral to alongside courses might be suggested as a teacher cannot provide effective teaching ,depriving the rest of group. The teacher is required by the management to set deadlines and targets, somehow there might be some circumstances that makes them unrealistic, so it is preferable to try and keep these as much as possible and maybe give time extensions in a particular condition.
If learners’ expectations are too high for the level of teaching, it would be more appropriate to talk to line manager than teaching a foreign and unknown subject. Learners might but unmotivated and unwilling to be involved in a course or lesson for any reason, if the lesson ends up disrupted and disturbed, and then it would be best to refer to management. A teacher is human and may experience personal issues but they are not to be perceived by learners in any ways as this would reflect on the teacher’s professionalism. As much as a teacher might like his/her students, it is best to avoid situations where friendship can establish e.g. having lunch together, going out for a drink, texting and messaging for other matters than teaching, the teacher would then become vulnerable and be seen as a friend by learners; same with colleagues, it is best to keep professional and behave appropriately without embarrassing anyone and try to stay “down to earth” so no one is unvalued and chagrined. A meeting or course might be organised outside teaching hours, the teacher must bear in mind that the institution he/she is working for is represented through him/her, that professionalism is expected and he/she has to be optimistic about it and be aware that any outcome will benefit directly to his/her teaching .The teacher might experience difficulties with equipment that may be faulty, missing or broken so the maintenance team or caretaker has to be told so the next lesson should be provided with working equipment, the teacher must not in any way try to repair or look into the faulty device.
If the organisation is lacking of resources, the teacher has to try and find another teaching strategy or necessary funding for the resources needed but mustn’t provide from own source .All of these boundaries are set in favour to maintain a prolific teaching in dignity, respect and professionalism. 2.2(Fawbert, 2004:184) “As well as target setting, other issues may arise from review process. You need to be prepared for learners to disclose possible problems, either academic or personal. You may not feel able to deal with these yourself and may need help from other sources. The key here is not trying to deal with these issues in which you have little experience, but refer the student to specialized support.” As said above the teacher may need to provide additional learning support so the learner is prepared to pursue the course. The learner might have learning difficulties or disability and may need specialized teaching so the teacher needs to ensure to refer the learner to the appropriate institution, if English isn’t the learner’s first language and as a result has difficulties to learn, the teacher might refer to an ESOL course to help the learner pursuing the course. Financial support might be needed so the teacher has the responsibilities to seek financial advice; the learner might have personal issues and would be referred to a counsellor or mediator, if childcare is an important matter for the learner, the teacher is to seek advice or available crèches .Assistance and support might be needed in writing or numeracy, it may be possible to get support from teachers’ assistant or learner support.
2.3 A teacher has responsibilities towards the organisation’s administration and has to provide notes from interviews, keep records such as register, assessments and personal details ,that way records could be passed on to another teacher in case the main teacher became absent , to an assessor who needs to know the learner’s progress or to additional learning support teacher. The records could also be useful if learner misses lessons often or grades suddenly fall; I would have to let the parents or guardians know. Teachers usually work as a team so updated resources and records are necessary to promote good team work. Record keeping is also indispensable in case an internal investigation is carried out as I will need to forward information to the relevant department or if counselling is necessary to the learner.
3. Understand own responsibility for maintaining a safe and supportive environment. 3.1 In order to set up a safe and supportive learning environment, I would refer to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs( 1962) ; the physiological needs would be promoted by taking regular breaks ,making the layout of the room appropriate to my type of lessons so my learners feel comfortable and more relaxed; the safety needs would be to assess any hazards risks ,follow codes of practice and legislations so my students would feel safe and secure; love and belonging, it is my duty to care about my learners so all of them feel integrated and involved ;self esteem is established if I welcome new ideas ,encourage independence, praise when appropriate, value my learners points of views; self actualisation would require optimistic teaching ,I would encourage my learners to make projects ,research, plans etc… 3.2 (Gravells, 2012:91) “Ground rules are boundaries, rules and conditions within which students can work and learn. They should underpin appropriate behaviour and respect for everyone in the group, including the teacher, and ensure the lesson run smoothly. If they are not set, problems may occur which could disrupt the session and lead to misunderstandings or behaviour problems.
It is best to agree the ground rules during the first session, perhaps after the icebreaker once everyone is feeling more relaxed.” As a teacher I need to create ground rules, they could be teacher imposed if time is an issue or teaching adults, they could also be learner imposed but I could still add mine to them, however if members of the class are very active, it could lead to discussions and disruptions, on the other hand learners feel in control .negotiated/agreed rules are more likely to be followed, I would set these working as a team with my learners and they would feel integrated and in control; brief and frequent recalls would help maintaining the rules bearing in mind not to embarrass any learners ,discreet signals might be performed when boundaries are crossed or about to be . As all teachers I will follow codes of practice which promote integrity, self respect, appropriate dress code, time keeping, punctuality, equality, diversity and inclusion as explained earlier on and act as a role model so my learners will reflect all these criteria’s on their work and careers.
Bibliography and references:
www.legislations.gov.uk retrieved on 20/10/13
www.IFL.ac.uk retrieved on 19/10/13
www.gov.uk retrieved on 17/10/13
www.simplypsychology.org retrieved on 19/10/13
Gravells A; (2012:14, 31, 32, 54, 91) Preparing to teach in the lifelong learning sector 5th edition Petty G; (2009:530) Teaching today 4th edition
Fawbert F ;(2003:184) Teaching in post compulsory education