Assistant teacher course/Introduction
This course consists of passages that address course instructors, passages that address participants and handouts for participants. Text for participants is marked as shown in the following example. It is recommended that underlined words are discussed with the participants. The assistant teachers should keep all their notes throughout the course for the book project.
Lectures with discussions should be held in small groups. The recommended size for discussion groups is less than fifteen pupils. In small groups the lecturer can make sure that every participant can contribute at some time. Involvement is particularly important to help the participants to make the goals of the course their own goals. An open-ended book project at the end of the course can also promote this attitude.
A possible mode for lectures is that individual participants are given the task to hold a part of a lecture and that the course instructor responsible for the group monitors the lecture and merely offers advice or intervenes when necessary. The primary reason is that this can increase the involvement of the participants, the training effect is secondary here (although pupils are likely to see the training effect as the purpose).
The first text is the welcome and introduction to the course for the participants.
Purpose and goalsEdit
The participants should be given time to write down their own, personal answers before a discussion. The following discussion should invite participants to debate on different views. As an instructor you should aim to emphasize varieties for the purpose.
Code of conductEdit
The next text invites assistant teachers to develop their own code of conduct for their office over the next three weeks.
Psychology of the officeEdit
The following text invites the pupils to consider the psychology of the office.
The last text pertains to citizenship education.
A meritocracy may have the effect to require frequent revision of policies when new assistant teachers join the group. Is that an advantage or disadvantage? A meritocracy can also motivate other pupils to form a democratic council and to overrule the meritocracy. Even having failed to do so can provide motivation to improve democratic participation in retrospect. One could see a solution which is likely to be seen as suboptimal (meritocracy) as the more educative approach here. That view may come as a bit of a surprise for pupils who have previously learned in a class council to prefer a democratic approach but the sudden reversal of a previously learned position may encourage the participants to reconsider their positions and to take a different perspective as teachers.
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