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Critical Reflection/Learning Theories - essay help

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by studentteacher26, Dec 27, 2017.

  1. studentteacher26

    studentteacher26 New commenter

    Hi all,

    I'm a little stuck with my critical reflection essay, the idea of critical reflection is okay - pros and cons etc however I'm having trouble including learning theories.

    The essay question is this: A significant incident from your own recent experience of teaching, drawing upon critical reflection techniques and learning theories.

    My 'significant incident' was a lesson where the class completed the work after 20 odd minutes, leaving me flapping on what to do.

    The 3 basic theories we've discussed at uni are - constructivism, behaviourism and cognitivism.

    I'm unsure how I can include the above theories in my essay?

    thanks in advance
  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter


    Perhaps think about something different for the significant incident - something with a bit more mileage.
    studentteacher26 likes this.
  3. saluki

    saluki Lead commenter

    I would be focusing on a lesson where I had bad behavior or disengagement.
    studentteacher26 likes this.
  4. studentteacher26

    studentteacher26 New commenter

    Thank you for your response, so maybe a Maths lesson were the children weren't engaged with what was given. Say a lesson where they were looking at compound shapes without any real meaning behind it just as 'something to do' opposed to having any real basis?

    Would then, looking at what was given I need to discuss (in my essay) how using constructivism could've improved it or how it fits into that idea of thinking?
  5. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    Of course you could always make something up and then ‘ address ‘ with your learning theory ;)
  6. saluki

    saluki Lead commenter

    Basically, you should be reflecting after every lesson: What went well? What didn't go well? What could I have done to improve things? What did I do to make this a successful lesson? What are the learning needs of my students? How do I address these needs? Did they respond well to praise or sanctions?
    I still do all of the above. I discarded Brookfield's lens etc the day after I submitted the essay.
  7. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    Read up on a bit on one of the theories and then make up a scenario that fits it. Don't make it too perfect but close enough that you can mount a convincing argument. Your tutor doesn't know everything that goes on in your class so if you say it happened, it happened.

    Looking up a couple of posts Minnie me suggests the same approach in a light hearted manner but I'm being serious. I've spent 30+ years making it up. It's worked with tutors and SLT but the students will soon find you out. Save your energies for giving your best to them, the rest is purely superfluous.
  8. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    Why did they finish so fast? Did the task actually let them learn anything? Did they learn what you wanted them to? Could you have used anything from those theories to extend and deepen the learning?
  9. trainee2112

    trainee2112 New commenter

    Hi Saluki, I am also doing a critical reflection essay, the title is on differentiation for SEND in the classroom and my practise. I have tried to post a thread about it, but I don't think it posted. I was just wondering if you had any help/advise on journals/articles I could use or exemplar essays, as I didn't do well in the being critical and referring back to question bit of the first essay.
    Any help would be great. Thank you

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