Methods of teaching refer to the regular ways or orderly procedures, employed by the teacher in guiding the pupils in order to accomplish the aims of the learning situation. As applied to classroom teaching, method is a series of related and progressive acts performed by the teacher and the pupils to accomplish the general and specific aims of the lesson.
Method has to do with the way a teacher communicates the subject to the students. Method involves regular steps to guide the mental processes of the learner in mastering the subject matter presented to him. It implies arrangement.
Psychological studies revealed that the mental processes involve sense perception, memory, imagination, judgment and reasoning. The processes are involved in every learning situation, but they are not employed with the same degree of intensity in learning different types of subject matter. If thorough mastery of the subject matter is desired, there must be an opportunity for the learner to repeat the process of analysis and synthesis until the act involved becomes a habit.
In the educative process, the three most important factors are the child, the teacher, and the subject matter. Take away one of the factors and it is doubtful if there can be any education. The child who is to be educated is considered the most important factor. The teacher is necessary to guide him in the educative process. Without the teacher, the child may learn the wrong things or learn improperly.
The teacher sifts subject matter and decides what is to be taught to the child. By means of method, the child is also guided in what parts of the subject matter to appreciate and what attitudes to develop. Also through method, the child acquires habits, route associations and skills. In the final analysis, the outcome of education are acquired through method.
Function of Method
Methods form the bridge between the child and subject matter, the former at one end, and the latter at the other. The bridge enables the child to get to the other end. Method makes learning easier. Method also functions as the link between child and society. By means of the method used in the classroom, the child’s personality unfolds and he learns to adjust to his surroundings. Proper attitudes, character traits and emotions are developed and he learns restraint and self control.
A Method is Good if:
1. It makes use of the principles of learning and permits the operation of these principles. The three principles are readiness, exercise, and effect which must be provided for.
2. It utilizes the principle of “learning by doing”. Since one learns through self-activity, provision should be made for direct experiencing. Activities should be planned so as to give children opportunities for doing, reacting and undergoing.
3. It provides for individual differences. A method should be flexible enough to serve the bright, the average, and the slow. There should be provisions for meeting different needs, interests, aptitudes and emotional maturity.
4. It stimulates thinking and reasoning. Problems come up everyday in this modern world and the child must learn to solve his own difficulties. He should get this training in the classroom.
5. It provides for growth and development. Children should grow in knowledge and ideas, in habits, skills and abilities, in attitudes and sentiments. Varied activities and experiences that will take care of development in various directions should be included in the lesson procedure.
Photo Courtesy: Roselyn Lanuzo / Jose P. Laurel High School