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Early education

2020-02-11 来源: 51Due教员组 类别: Essay范文

哈喽 大家好 今天给大家介绍一篇essay 这一篇叙事散文主要描述的是在主人公还是一名就读全球媒体专业的时候,发现对于这一门课程并不是很感兴趣,与他所期望的未来和职业生活并不是那么的相符,经过再三考虑决定以教育硕士作为我的专业,并介绍了作者对于中国儿童早教日益普遍化问题的看法。一起来看下吧

It was my first trip to Australia in June 2013 when I was a student of University of Melbourne. My major was global media. During the process of studying in this course, I found that I was not so interested in the course I expected, and I could not link what I learned with my future, or my career in future. Thus before the end of the first semester, I applied for a withdrawal. Because I really like children, I hope that in future, I will be engaged in early childhood education-related occupation, so after dropping out, after thinking over carefully, I decided to choose Master of Education of Monash University as my major. However, as I was not familiar with the Australian education system and early childhood education qualifications, when I studied in Monash for a period of time, I found that the course was purely theoretical, and after graduation, I could not become a preschool teacher (only students of Master of teaching can), so very frustratingly, I once again applied for withdrawal. Then I came to Deakin University.

In this trimester, my past understanding of early childhood education has been radically changed. Firstly, about the purpose of early childhood education, in China, there is more and more emphasis on early childhood education, in order to allow the children to be able to study in a kindergarten, queuing overnight has been very common.

Figure 1: Queued Chinese parents day and night for kindergarten enrollment

If it is a "bilingual" or "international" kindergarten, in addition to anxiety with kindergarten enrollment, the tuition costs are high, the highest tuition fee a year can be more than 20,000 Australian dollars. In the minds of many parents, a good kindergarten, a good elementary school, a junior high school, a good high school, and even a good university help their kids to acquire a good job in future, so as to live a better life. Over the past although I am not quite agree with this point of view the aims of education, but I have to accept this reality (Noddings, 2003).

Secondly, considering from early childhood strategies, in the past, what I thought for early childhood education is too simple, and I thought that preschool education is teaching children some simple knowledge, playing together with children, singing, etc. However, lots of readings and assignments in this trimester make me feel that what I think is too naive. For example: in a Australia's classroom, ‘critical’ is a word very often mentioned. Critical thinking is a way of thinking that every student should have, this is a big challenge for me. When I studied in China, most of the time, when we needed to do was following and memorizing. Just as what is shown in the following figure, we acquire knowledge by being instilled, rather than absorbed after thinking by ourselves.

Figure 2: Chinese spoon-feeding education

Once, when I studied in high school, I debate with our politics teacher about the multiple choices of a philosophical question (In Chinese high schools, contents of high school politics course include economics, politics, philosophy and culture.). I thought that the four options were all correct, but the standard answers showed that only three options were available. After debating with my teacher, he was also convinced and went to agree with me, but he said, “the answers are three options, we can only follow the answers”. China has a long history, the characteristics of the culture in education is emphasizing a teacher's authority, requiring that students should respect and follow teachers’ thinking, it is a typical teacher-centered teaching method. This way of teaching may be helpful for students to get high test scores in a short time, but I think that it is detrimental for motivation of students in learning, it is very negative for students to form critical and creative thinking. From a child, I am a more active student and I like putting forward some different views at class, but most of the time, my novelty opinions failed to be supported by teachers, which severely suppressed my interest in learning and made me feel very helpless. Through the Internet, I have learned that in most of the western countries, the educational model is student-centered, this mode of education pay more attention to the views of students, it encourages and allows students to put forward their views, focuses on training students’ autonomy, critical and creative thinking in learning (Dewey, 1916), I am personally very yearning for this mode of education. In this case, I more want to learn in the western countries, because I hope to study in a place in which it allows me to think. Similarly, in the process of teaching children, what a teacher should do is not just simply imparting skills and knowledge, but paying attention to the views of children, being willing to communicate with them and share what they feel with them, cultivating children’s innovation, critical thinking as well.

I have a new understanding of the purpose of early childhood education by studying at Deakin University. Humanism theory holds that the people who are trained in education should have fully developed human personality. Such people have initiative and responsibility, as well as the ability to flexibly adapt to changes to achieve human self-development and self-worth (Brostrom and Hansen, 2010; Rogers, 1980). DEECD (2011) concludes five Outcomes for all children from birth to eight years, namely, identity, community, wellbeing, learning, communication. Based on the study of the knowledge, I solved the doubts for purpose of early childhood education. In the past in China, I considered the purpose of education as helping students to get a good job in future or to live so called ‘a better life’. Students trained by such system may have an advantage in getting high test scores, but they lack innovation and critical thinking. I also think that many of China's current social problems, such as a lack of empathy, lack of social responsibility, idolizing money may also be related to inappropriate Chinese educational purposes. If it can follow the above theory to correct the purpose for education, it may help to solve some of the problems that the Chinese society faces fundamentally.

Through the study at Deakin University, I have a new experience about teaching methods and strategies of early childhood education. For example, in terms of the word of "teaching", what I used to think is that it's more formal, students are sitting neatly and a teacher is writing on the blackboard, this is teaching. However, during the placement, most of the time, I was playing with kids until the end of the placement, I still thought that I did nothing relating to "teaching". Until today, I communicated with Elizabeth, she reminded me that in Australia, it was "play-based teaching", when I thought that there was nothing relating to "teaching", in fact, the children may have learned how to communicate with teachers and friends, how to cooperate with other children, as well as a lot about the nature, the society, animals, plants through playing.

Considering the roles that a teacher plays in teaching, my past point is that a teacher is a leader of students in learning, but what I have learned at Deakin University make me change my view of the role of a teacher at class. First of all, a teacher is an auxiliary supporter, he/ she becomes a partner of students in learning to joint them to explore in a variety of problems in learning with students, so as to lay the foundation for students to learn how to learn, self-development and even lifelong learning (Dewey, 1916). Then, as a facilitator of students in learning, a teacher is willing and able to play the role of students to have a more profound understanding of the challenges and difficulties faced by students to be able to feel more acutely the needs of students, so as to guide them better. This can help students to enhance their sense of responsibility and motivation, setting goals, developing a learning plan and taking actual action, thus accomplishing effective learning strategies (Vygotsky, 1978; Recchia and Shin, 2010). Finally, in early childhood education, to take care of children requires teachers to have good subjective and objective capacities, teacher should handle the relationship and conflicts between professional tasks and personal tasks (Elfer, 2007).

My concept of the past about early childhood education is that its purpose is helping children to get a good job or a good life in future. Now my view on early childhood education is that it should contribute to the overall development of children to help them to achieve self-worth. Dewey (1916) figures that education should on the one hand respect children’s nature, interests and hobbies, on the other hand, it should adapt to social needs. To identify the purpose of education has guidance significance for my future work in terms of education area. In future, my study on the purpose of early childhood education will be carried out in the following two aspects. Firstly, sometimes there are irreconcilable contradictions between meeting social needs and children’s nature, interests, hobbies. For instance, considering juveniles kept in juvenile delinquent rehabilitation centers, they affect each other badly sometimes, at this time, the children's interests and hobbies collide with social ethics. How to reduce the contradictions to achieve the purpose of respect children’s nature, interests and hobbies while helping them to adapt to the society is one of the issues I should deal with in further study. Secondly, I will explore what measures should be taken to achieve the above-mentioned balance. For example, Dewey (1916) considers that kids like group activities, then we can allow kids to get social experience through participating in group activities, so that they will become good members of a society. According to Dewey's theory, by shaping a child-friendly learning environment and topics, while the learning environment and the topics are related to realities of society, children’s own nature can be developed in the process of learning and they are able to get a necessary social experience and knowledge, this is the subject that I need to further study in future.

Judging from education strategy, Dewey (1916) believes that traditional education strategy emphasizes that students should just echo what the book says and memorize what teachers teach, such teaching strategies suppress students' creative and critical abilities, and it separates students from practical needs. These views put forward by Dewey have a positive significance. Australia take a "play-based teaching strategy, compared with traditional educational strategies, this strategy has many advantages, for example, it contributes to the overall development of children and it help children to develop their ability to communicate and cooperate with other people, which is more in line with the psychological characteristics and development law of children (Eggen and Kauchak, 2007; Woolfolk and Margetts, 2010). However, it does not mean that the traditional educational strategies such as standardized testing are totally useless. Barad (2007) points out that the daily life of children can not be separated from normative conditions. Amrein and Berliner (2003) find that in some countries, there is the trend of emphasizing curriculum improvements and standardized testing relating to language acquisition and early literacy. They indicate that traditional educational strategies such as standardized testing in early childhood education still have merit. Therefore I hope that the future research on education strategy in education process should be conducted from the following two aspects. First of all, in the process of implementation of "play-based teaching”, some traditional teaching strategies can be introduced appropriately, so as to investigate whether traditional teaching strategies contribute to the achievement of educational goals that VEYLDF identifies. Then, it should explore how to revise and optimize traditional educational strategies to ensure that traditional teaching strategies also contribute to the educational goals that VEYLDF identifies to a certain extent.

By learning and personal observations on classroom teaching, as well as my experience, I have some critical thinking for the theoretical knowledge I have learned. In the past, it has always emphasized the care and help of teachers for students, whether all acts of teachers taking care and help for students as the purpose is correct, it is not always the case. For example, when a teacher is on the basis of moral principles or norms to remind students and correct some improper needs and behaviors of them, although the starting point is good, students do not appreciate it, so that students fail to develop a good relationship between the teacher. Thus, teachers should help students to become the persons of their own way, rather than the way that teachers want to become (Dewey, 1916). Brostrom and Hansen (2010) analyze that “they need care, which is concerned with their way of exploring the world and with their specific activities and interests as children.” According to Brostrom and Hansen’s (2010) theory, I think that even a teacher helps students for care purpose, he/she also can not forget using the way that students can understand, or it is easy to damage the relationship between teachers and students. Even what students need is wrong, wrong, teachers should not hit students but point out the wrong in students’ needs, respecting and understanding them at the same time, in order to maintain a good relationship between teachers and students.

Therefore I think that in addition to a supporter, a facilitator, a teacher should also be a defender of a good relationship between teachers and students. Maintaining the good relationship between teachers and students can make teachers get students’ trust, in order to make a series of teaching strategies to achieve the intended purpose. Ebbeck and Yim (2009) also find that “fostering positive relationships between infants, toddlers and their primary caregivers is of prime importance to the emotional well-being of infants and toddlers”. In the process of the future learning and teaching, I will discuss the following two aspects on how to establish a good relationship between teachers and students. Firstly, in teaching process, if children's behavior is indeed contrary to the norms and ethics, I try to find a way which not only allows students to recognize and correct mistakes without but also maintain a good relationship with students. Secondly, Noddings (2003), Rockel (2009) point out that education should respect a child's nature and personality; there is not a standard to be complied with fully. So I hope in the future learning and work, by observing students' responses to summarize what manner that teachers should take in different contexts to care for their students is appropriate.

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