After many years of teaching automotive technology in vocation school, I would like to offer these observations on how teaching applies to students' learning.
Society is going through a transition. We are living in a world of high technology. The computer has been in classrooms for some time to help educate our children.
But all of these high-tech "helpers" cannot replace the human touch or voice. We, as humans, like to hear someone tell us, "You're doing a good job," or, we would like someone to pat us on the back or praise us. This is exactly what the boss will, or should, say in the work world.
The education we are giving students must be related to the working world, such as English composition, handwriting and understanding of measurements.
At the same time, they must be made to understand that a thief or liar is punished under the law.
The learner is looking for guidance through a leader or someone he or she can be proud of, truly admire and someone whose habits the student can imitate. Many of today's generation have no guidance at home, therefore, they look to teachers to guide them and provide a foundation for the future.
They need to be encouraged, because it boosts their egos and gives them the confidence they need to accomplish whatever it is they want after graduation.
Unfortunately, many parents don't know what to tell their children or how to guide them. They expect the school to teach them the good values of life. Things work out better when there is a strong line of communication between the teacher and the student.
This way, not only will the student feel better about himself, but he will have a better understanding of his peers. We must have a good rapport with our students and leave the lines open for productive communication at all times.
We must not undermine our students with negative attitudes toward the students, just as we must never underestimate the mental capabilities of the students.
A teacher who is full of vigor and enthusiasm will have a class that is fully motivated toward accomplishments. With that attitude, there is no limit as to what the class can do.
Furthermore, it takes time to become an educated person; it doesn't happen overnight. It is a long process to cultivate the mind. Children must understand this, while also understanding that we never stop learning.
Many children's parents never had the opportunity for a good education. Therefore, they expect their children to be taught only in school. Nevertheless, under these circumstances, those parents can reach a common goal by giving them love, compassion and understanding, always remembering that their environment influences their behavior.
Victor Hugo Rojas lives in Spring Hill. He is a retired vocational education teacher from Dade County.