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All the teachers in the various schools have the responsibility of providing a safe environment for the children that are in their respective schools even as they carry out their primary goal of educating them. This is a situation where the teachers will be in a position to keep themselves safe while also keeping the children safe. Child focused practice has two main constituents. First, the act is founded on a child focused belief that all the children have the right to safe passage during their childhood and also the right to grow up in an environment that is safe. Secondly, the welfare and needs of the child are the key elements and the key focus of practice. The teachers in this case should therefore have adequate professional know how and experience in order to provide the best care possible to the children. It is therefore very important that the administration in a school ensures that the teachers have adequate knowledge and training in the area of child focused practice so as to ensure that the children in the school are in an environment that is conducive for learning. It is even important for the teachers themselves because they will be in a position to be able to relate well with the learners in general. Many learners especially the young ones look up to their teachers as role model or as responsible people whom they may want to emulate. The teachers should ensure that they have the proper training in order to provide the most appropriate environment to the children. This paper will therefore focus on given an explanation of what the child focus practice is and why it is integral to being a teacher.
Being child focused leads to an environment where the experience of the child is the most significant and the teachers and learners are judged according to the outcomes and learning processes of the child. They are both crucial and therefore they should be given equal attention because of otherwise it will not be helpful. The teacher being learner focused means that he/she acknowledges the significance of knowledge and of the child. However the focus is on the child as a learner and the learning process. Where teacher concentrates on the children and the learning process and he/she integrates that with their knowledge, class and school organization that will lead to the highest degree of achievement and motivation for learners, that is what being child focused is about (McCombs & Whisler, 1997).
Creating an appropriate environment for learning involves values. The values are generally universal but they differ in some areas or nations due to the difference in cultures and norms. The values are what that matters and they shape the teaching practice. If what actually matters is not clear or what the law makers think matters is not in line with what matters to the learners or teachers then the environment suffers. Child focused practice also has a relationship with beliefs, characters, practices and characteristics of teachers. The individual teacher will therefore have an influence on the outcome of the practice. Where the teacher does not believe that the practice is appropriate for the children, the teacher will most probably neglect it or practice it shoddily (McCombs & Whisler, 1997).
Teachers who base their practices on the child focused approach have some unique characteristics. Such teachers will get the learners involved in making the decisions concerning what and how they are to learn and how the assessment of that learning should be conducted (Crick, 2006). The relationship of the teacher and the learners is important because they will feel that they comfortable in that environment. Such teachers also value the different views of the various learners and do not shun down any of the learners. It is important that the teachers encourage the children to share their opinions for them to feel that they are in a safe environment. This is a way that the teacher can show the children that he/she cares about them and their views.
Teachers who are focused on the children have respect and accept the difference in the background, abilities, interests, and experiences of the various learners (Crick, 2006). This is important because the teachers will be in a position to appreciate each and every child just as he or she is. It is important that the teacher has a clear understanding of the different children because it even determines how such a teacher will address the children individually. Respect is important because the teacher will only get it from the children if she/he respects them too. The teachers should also consider the learners to be their partners in the learning and teaching process (Crick, 2006). The teacher should not attempt to go alone but should rather indulge the children in the practices. Such characteristics are of teachers who have the proper knowledge and understanding of what it means to be child focused and those are the teachers who create a good environment for the teaching and learning to take place efficiently.
Focus on the children allows the young learners to instigate their own learning. Through this, the teacher is able to focus on the child and it puts emphasis on emotional and cognitive growth. Child focused learning is based on the standards of major educational researchers and child psychologists. In a classroom that is child focused, the children will be allowed to initiate their own learning by choosing the activities that they are interested in. they are allowed to work on their own to discover their potential without being directed as to what they should do. This will also allow the children to initiate their own learning in ways that are easy for them .to understand. They will choose their own learning styles by themselves. The various children in a classroom learn in their own unique ways and there is no way in which they can all learn equally through the use of a common approach to all (Crick, 2006).
A child focused classroom is comprised of much learning by way of playing. This is why it is very evident that this kind of learning is used at the very early stages of learning. It is important the children play together with their peers so that they grow socially. There is also the promotion emotional development in a child focused environment where emotional expression and self confidence are encouraged. It is important that the teachers understand the significance of play and especially to the very young children. This is important because the teachers will then be in a position to encourage the children to play thus promoting learning. The teachers should act as facilitators rather than instructors. They should be there just to guide the children rather that tell them what to do. This is because in such an environment the children are supposed to be encouraged to initiate their own learning. The teacher should also be involved in giving a proper organization and structure in the classroom and leave the children to explore their own potential (Hersh, 2009).
The structure of the classroom in a child focused approach should also be different. It can be done by distributing the learners differently in the classroom according to their skills and interests. The children can be divided into multi age groups or learning communities. This will help the children in a certain group to grow together and help each other because they will probably have better understanding among themselves. Due to the variation in the ability of the learners, the way in which that they are assessed can also be customized to the student projects. The teachers will therefore have to adopt flexible rubrics and other methods that may even be informal (Hersh, 2009).
The teachers have the responsibility of ensuring that the children in their respective schools develop in the best way possible and achieve the best outcome. The teachers play a big role in ensuring that the children learn in a proper environment for the outcome to be desirable. The child focused practice by teachers ensures that the children initiate their own learning. The teachers should have adequate knowledge and understanding of the practice in order to apply it in the most effective manner. The beliefs and values of the teachers will have an effect on the impact that the practice will have on the children. The teacher should also be in a position to respect and understand the different backgrounds, abilities, interests, and experiences of the various learners.