Mindless Theory Not Benefiting Young Teachers


It pains me that our young teachers are filled with theory , yet are totally unprepared for the realities of the classroom.

Yes, it’s great to know how to understand the importance of open-ended questions and Blooms taxonomy is very interesting to discuss, but if you don’t know how to engage students, communicate properly, act quickly under pressure, demonstrate patience and deal with misbehaving students what hope do you have?

When a student bullies another student before your eyes, consulting Vygotsky wont provide you with the answer you’re looking for.

When your students look disinterested and hand in poorly thought out and badly structured writing pieces channeling Skinner wont achieve all that much.

It’s time we help our young and emerging teachers gain the practical skills they need for the classroom. Put the theory to a side and give them as much classroom observation time as you can secure for them. Provide them with mentors, connect them with successful teachers, open their eyes to the realities of working in the classroom. No gloom and doom is necessary, but pie in the sky is also deeply unhelpful. As rewarding as the profession is, it also comes with a fair amount of stress. Our student teachers should be made aware of this and have the tools to manage all areas of future stress.

I say get rid of Vygotsky and instead fill them with as many practically based scenarios to work through such as difficult parents, ADHD students, dealing with different learning styles, understanding autism and developing engaging lessons.

How badly unprepared were you for the classroom? I know I was.


Click on the link to read my post Care About Your Students or Find a Different Career

Click on the link to read my post I Can’t Recall Anything Useful About My Teaching Course

Click on the link to read my post Why Principals Overlook Young Teachers

Click on the link to read my post The Bizarre Call to Train Teachers Specifically for Left-Handed Students




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2 Responses to “Mindless Theory Not Benefiting Young Teachers”

  1. charityteaches Says:

    Hi Michael. I popped over here after getting your comment yesterday, and I’m so glad that I did! I’ve been reading through your blog before work this morning and post really struck a cord with me. I have zero tolerance for the shoddy way we approach teacher training in this country. Every teacher with classroom experience who has taken the PLT in the last 5 years can tell you what a joke it is and how little it reflects the real world of education.

    In any case, thanks for sharing your own thoughts on this topic.

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