Teachers and Learners – Roles That Complement Each Other

Teachers should share their enthusiasm with students

In the process of learning, there are numerous things that play a significant role towards making it a smooth, pleasurable and constructive process.

First of all, the teachers are those who set the tone for a great learning environment. However, a lot depends on the way the learners face the lessons and overall, learning.
To begin with, a learner must seriously take into consideration that learning is a great commitment. Most of the times, it requires hard work in order for it to be a successful procedure. Building up knowledge should be continuous; that is, the learners should consistently study so as not to have any gaps, for the reason that then they will have serious problems in their learning. Learning is like a chain, and each lesson and studying time is a link in the chain. If the learners fail to study or miss a lesson without making up for it, then they automatically break the learning chain and their learning is disrupted. For that reason, teachers are there to remind learners that both of them should stick to a schedule and that when a lesson is missed, it will surely be made up for.
Secondly, learners must understand what kind of learner they are: are they visual, aural, kinesthetic? This can be encouraged by the teachers. Not everyone learns the same way. (Unfortunately, I have heard teachers say “Oh, why is that student constantly whispering when he reads?” – Well, maybe he likes to hear himself and assimilate the text better, someone might say? Or: “Don’t look at the board, everyone write it down!” – Well, what if the students are visual and can cope well with that?) It is important for them to decide on what kind of learner they are, as this will help them tremendously.

Learning will become much easier and naturally, more pleasant for them. Plus, they will help their teachers enormously, as the latter will be able to adapt their lessons to their learners’ needs and special traits. For instance, at a young age I realized I could learn better when hearing something when the teachers spoke in my daily lessons at school. I later took advantage of my personal learning style and enjoyed assimilating through listening to my teachers speak, from tapes and television (here in combination with images), or from the radio, whatever the lesson. Up to now, my aural learning style has assisted me in my teaching as well, for the reason that I enrich my knowledge by attending seminars and conferences, where you can hear a number of speakers. Thus, each person must look inside themselves and discover what type of learner they are; it will help tremendously in promoting learning. A characteristic of the good learner is concentration, both in class and in the study place. A good learner pays attention to the teacher while delivering the lesson and also to their classmates, when they are asking a question about the lesson or answering the teacher’s questions. (Naturally, the teacher has to be enthusiastic and make the lesson as interesting as possible so that the students become engaged as well.) It is very constructive to pay attention when classmates have questions, because for example it may be something they cannot comprehend. Teachers need to encourage and remind this and try to engage a number of students when someone asks a question. This is a very good opportunity for the others in class to learn something new, something maybe they had not thought or about, or they can even answer the questions themselves, if of course they can explain the unintelligible point in question.
Moreover, there must be concentration in the study place as well. The learner must choose to study in a comfortable, warm environment, if possible away from distractions like telephones, computers or televisions. Above all, studying should take place at an appropriate time for the learners: they should ask themselves what the best time of day for them is in order to study and keep that as permanent study time. Therefore, learners have to create a good study schedule and combine it with any other daily activities or work, if they are professionals. Having a schedule aids the learning process a great deal, for the reason that it helps maintain organization. Last of all, but equally important to all the aforementioned factors, learners should be prepared to study hard. It is highly beneficial to study not only the work assigned by the teacher, but also to access additional bibliography to read extensively on the given subject and moreover to recycle and simultaneously comprehend all the components of the lesson delivered by the teacher. It may be tiring at times, as it is extra work, but the benefits are numerous.
All elements combined, the learner is a person responsible for their advancement in learning and should be organized, attentive and should be prepared to study, so as to be successful in the work they have undertaken. In order for them to achieve this though, the teacher is responsible for the learning process to a great extent. If the teacher turns the classroom into an enthusiastic and encouraging place for learning (as well as organized), then the learner will enjoy being there as well.

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10 thoughts on “Teachers and Learners – Roles That Complement Each Other

  1. Hello Vicky,

    I also agree with Karenne and you about learning being a linked process and every part of it being links in a chain – not just coming to the lessons, but also my students being prepared to do work on English in their own time, to question things for themselves.

    Too often it feels to me like a student is expecting me to serve them English on a plate, and that they’ll get better without having to put too much effort into their studies. Boulderdash! Any teacher can develop his or her teaching and make it the best possible/most accessible/most learner-friendly; what they cannot do is ‘make’ anybody learn. That’s wholely down to them. Teaching and learning have to work together; teachers and students too.

    Very nice reading!

    Mike

  2. Hi Mike!
    Welcome to my blog. Thank you for reading, commenting and for your kind words!
    I couldn’t agree with you more at the point where you mention that “Any teacher can develop his or her teaching and make it the best possible/most accessible/most learner-friendly; what they cannot do is ‘make’ anybody learn.” Very well put! Sometimes in the classroom students expect us to “make” them learn, which is not possible without any effort on their part.
    Therefore, I believe that it is a symbiotic relationship and both teacher and students in co-operation can work wonders!
    Thank you again Mike!
    Kindest regards,
    Vicky

  3. Hi Vicky,
    Thanks for this wonderful blog. I would like to add some comments.Gone are the days when people said, ‘We can take the horse to the pond, but we can’t make it drink water. The horse will only drink water if it feels really thirsty’. Nowadays, teachers should not only create or build knowledge, but also create a conducive atmosphere for students or learners to receive this knowledge. But, what is the ideal student, teacher ratio to go about with this task of teaching and learning process successfully. What kind of method would the teacher follow in a big classroom? Is it possible for the teacher to give individual attention to his students? So, teachers have to be good managers in order to handle a big classroom. Then, the teachers should have the freedom or flexibility towards work. A learner should also have the same freedom to choose his way and course of learning. It is also important to understand the learners’ socio-economic condition. Sometimes the learner may be a first generation learner, and the teacher may have to provide an ideal condition for the learner to pursue learning. The management or the school authorities role is also very important in preparing the time schedule, effective supervision, and providing an ideal environment, situation and infrastructure to encourage teaching and learning.
    regards,
    suresh

    • Hello Suresh and thank you for reading and for your comments!
      You are absolutely right when saying that teachers should also be good classroom managers, in order to ensure that all students’ individual needs are met and their learning styles have been externalized in class.
      Equally (as you mention once again), the role of the school authorities is vital in order to ensure that the learning process is facilitated.
      Thank you again Suresh!
      Kindest regards,
      Vicky

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  5. Hi Vicky
    Thanks a lot for your interesting article.I would like just to add my view concerning effective teaching.your focus was just on the learner as an active participant and the extent to which detecting his style will aid him or her and the teacher as well in promoting teaching process. My question is could teacher style also be taken into consideration since we know that there is an interaction process between the two?

    Cheers,
    Younes

    • Hello Younes!

      Thank you so much for reading and for your comment.

      You are absolutely right, teaching styles also influence the lesson and the students’ performance as well. Everything has to be in the right balance for things to work out in class. Thank you so much for adding that.

      I am glad you enjoyed reading it!

      Kindest regards,
      Vicky

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