Teaching Today: An Introduction to Education (6th Edition)

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9780130226808: Teaching Today: An Introduction to Education (6th Edition)

This interesting introduction to education and teaching uses a reader-engaging style to explore the full spectrum of the field. Using reality as a springboard, it offers many hands-on opportunities to reflect, to analyze, and to develop effective decision-making and leadership skills. The authors provide clear, research-based coverage of relevant topics that relate to the profession's social, historical and philosophical foundations; characteristics of learners; school reform and theories associated with instruction; management; and evaluation. It truly prepares readers to become altruistic, innovative teachers in a climate of constant change. Chapter topics include becoming a professional educator, legal issues affecting teachers, the diverse needs of a variety of learners, effective instruction, classroom management and discipline, assessing learning, influences on teachers and learners, and the influence of curriculum. For teachers in today's classrooms and the teachers of tomorrow.

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From the Publisher:

Comprehensive and research-based -- yet easy and interesting to read -- this introduction to education and teaching explores the full spectrum of the field and offers many hands-on and minds-on opportunities for students to reflect, analyze, and to develop effective decision-making and leadership skills. Strongly based in reality, it covers Trends and Realities, Contexts for Teaching (characteristics and constraints of today's classroom), Today's Diverse Learners, Teachers and Their Work (issues involved with the various dimensions of teachers' professional lives), and Schools (school characteristics related to administration, staffing, programming, and delivery of quality service to learners).

From the Inside Flap:

Preface

What is wrong with today's schools? How can they be made better? At various periods in our national life, these questions have been answered in quite different ways. If you review what educational reformers were saying in the 1960s, you will find comments such as the following:

Schools are inhumane places that fail to acknowledge the dignity of learners. Learners' individual development suffers because all are subjected to a common curriculum. Administrators and teachers exercise too much authority over what learners study in school. Many more "electives" and other kinds of learning options should replace curricula that are too narrow in scope. There is far too much use of standardized testing.

Certainly not all critics of school practices in the 1960s agreed with these statements, but these opinions were common during this period of our history. Now contrast these views with what many critics of educational practices are saying as we enter the new century:

School curricula often are too fragmented; it is better for learners to study fewer subjects in more depth. Standardized testing of some kind is needed so that meaningful comparisons can be made among different schools. More academic rigor is needed in school curricula, and it is the responsibility of administrators and teachers to ensure this happens. The primary purpose of schools is to focus on learners' academic development.

By no means do all present-day proponents of educational reform agree with these propositions. However, these ideas are widespread, and actions of school districts throughout the country to emphasize school accountability, rigorous testing of learners, and strong academic programs attest to their potency.

We draw the contrast between these prescriptions for "making the school better" to make the point that you will be entering a profession where today's received wisdom may be tomorrow's discarded, stale news. To be happy in education, you must embrace change as a given. Better yet, you need to be energized by your participation in a public debate that will be a career-long shaper and reshaper of your professional life.

Education today demands smart, altruistic people. If school districts were to put up signs to attract the kinds of people they want to hire, the signs might well read: "Wanted: Teachers Who Lead." If you seek a career free from the confrontations of contemporary life, choose another line of work. You will be expected to function as a proactive leader. The trend is toward involving teachers more and more in decisions about budgeting, management, and many other areas that go well beyond their traditional concerns for instructional planning. The level of involvement you can have as a teacher will give you an opportunity to assume significant responsibilities and make a difference soon after beginning your career.

In preparing the sixth edition of Teaching Today, we have sought to provide you with an explanation of topics relevant to the world you will enter as a classroom teacher. These relate to the nature of the profession; special characteristics of learners; theories and research associated with instruction, management, and evaluation; the social, historical, and philosophical foundations of the profession; issues associated with school reform and curriculum patterns; and common organizational arrangements of schools. In addition, you will find material designed to help you analyze, reflect, and decide. You can expand your understanding of these issues by going beyond the text to pursue information at a number of World Wide Web sites that we recommend. You also will find useful an extensive glossary of specialized terms.

We hope this book will help you develop your ability to think carefully about educational issues and to grasp key characteristics of teaching and schooling. Welcome to the profession! ORGANIZATION OF THIS TEXT

Earlier editions of Teaching Today have been used both by undergraduate and graduate students. We have prepared the book for use in introduction to education classes, introduction to teaching classes, foundations of education classes, school curriculum classes, issues in education classes, and problems in education classes. This edition organizes content under five major headings. The title of each provides a context for the chapters it includes.

Part I is titled "The Profession Today." Chapter 1 emphasizes the changing nature of the profession. To illustrate teachers' many responsibilities, there is a useful description of a teacher's typical day. Chapter 2 introduces the phases in a teacher's professional development, including continued development once initial preparation has been completed. The chapter also briefly introduces roles in education other than classroom teaching. Chapter 3 explores the numerous legal issues affecting teachers today.

Part II focuses on "Learners and Their Diverse Needs." Chapter 4 explores issue's associated with multiculturalism. Specific examples of programs that have well served culturally diverse young people are introduced. Chapter 5 considers legal requirements and instructional approaches relevant to appropriately serving learners with special needs and special talents. Chapter 6 focuses on legal aspects of learners' rights and responsibilities. The chapter includes an extensive discussion of relevant court cases.

Part III centers on "Teaching in Today's Classrooms." Chapter 7 emphasizes direct instruction and includes information related to such issues as active teaching, program planning, teacher questions, homework, and teacher-learner observation instruments that can be used in the classroom. Chapter 8 focuses on the important is sue of classroom management and discipline. Specific suggestions are included for a scaled series of teacher responses that vary according to the seriousness and frequency of the disruptive behavior. Chapter 9 describes approaches to assessment, measurement, evaluation, and grading. In addition to more traditional approaches, there is extensive treatment of portfolios.

Part IV focuses on "Influences on Teachers and Learners." Chapter 10 explains how learners' membership in schools, families, religious and social organizations, and certain ethnic and cultural groups influences their patterns of behavior in the classroom. Chapter 11 traces important historical roots of American education. Chapter 12 introduces information that illustrates how varying philosophical perspectives influence attitudes toward specific curricula and instructional practices.

Part V considers "Contexts of Teaching." Chapter 13 focuses on school reform and includes such topics as systemic reform, INTASC standards, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, school choice options, school-business partnerships, and full-service schools. Chapter 14 addresses issues associated with curriculum, with particular attention to curricula based on needs of learners, curricula based on academic subject matter, and curricula based on the needs of society. Chapter 15 describes patterns of school funding, staffing, and organization.

At the end of the book, you will find a complete glossary in which all terms introduced in the text are defined. SPECIAL FEATURES OF THIS TEXT

Features of the sixth edition of Teaching Today include the following:

Bulleted objectives at the beginning of each chapter draw students' attention to important chapter content. Graphic organizers (NEW!) at the beginning of each chapter provide a convenient graphical summary of chapter content. Introductions at the beginning of each chapter set the stage for information to be presented. Links to the companion website, (NEW!) located at prenhall/armstrong, are integrated throughout each chapter and embedded in most feature boxes. Two Following the Web features (NEW!) in each chapter provide opportunities for students to enrich their understanding of new content by going to selected sites on the World Wide Web. Critical Incidents in each chapter provide students opportunities to engage in higher level thinking as they reflect on situations faced by teachers today. What Do You Think? features in each chapter ask readers to examine their personal convictions and consider alternate perspectives so they can better relate to colleagues and students in their classrooms. Video Viewpoint features (NEW!) in every chapter connect segments on the accompanying video, Critical Issues in Education, to chapter content and provide classroom opportunities for lively discussions and self-reflection. Cartoons that appear periodically illustrate educational issues and help convey to the students that, while education is serious business, it need not be grim. Figures in each chapter provide opportunities for students to reflect on issues that are introduced. Key Ideas in Summary sections at the end of each chapter facilitate content review by drawing students' attention to important ideas. Reflections materials at the end of each chapter prompt students to engage in critical thinking about various issues that have been raised. Field

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