Teacher teaming is a strategy used in most schools by teachers to focus on student needs collaboratively. Successful teacher teams in most schools integrate the strengths of various teacher’s viewpoints in a systematic way that no single teacher would have expounded independently. Like any form of collaborative scholarship, teacher teaming provides an array of teaching styles that help connect with the learning preferences of most students. Teachers in successful teacher teams regularly meet during school days to focus on various student needs and determine how best they can solve them.
At its best, teacher teaming allows students and the faculty to benefit from the healthy interchange of ideas in a setting that is characterized by mutual respect and a common goal. Teacher teams in various schools work differently depending on how they are structured. There are five types of team teaching, which include, the hierarchical teaching assignments, co-teaching, interdepartmental team teaching, full or part-time helpers, and trading groups (Drummond, 1961).
The hierarchy of teaching assignments is an instructional team that is developed to teach a particular group of students. It involves various teachers teaching the specific class on the same topic to enhance their understanding. Co-teaching is an approach where teachers are allocated a large group of students, and are therefore forced to plan together on how best they will provide for the students they are responsible for. Interdepartmental team teaching approach results when teachers from various related departments devise schedules they should teach in particular class. Full or part-time helpers in most schools provide additional help to students by clarifying on what the lecturer had taught. The Trading group teacher team approach exchanges students regarding the topic in question. This enables them to get information from the best-qualified teacher in the team (Drummond, 1961).
Teacher teams are important in any given school since they contribute greatly to the academic success of students when they are well implemented. Teachers should, therefore, strive and make teams that are based on professionalism, loyalty and respect since mismatches in these areas could pose serious problems. Improvement of student results can be achieved if teacher teams prioritize student needs and make them their main agenda.
Teachers should cultivate colleagueship and work towards similar overall goals for their teams to work. They should create proper and extensive course designs that will help cater for various student needs. This should be done by exploring individual assumptions about the goals and methods used in a certain course so as to reach a consensus and improve their chances of offering substantial information to their students. Working towards a common goal is vital for teachers since it often leads to the academic success of students in the long run. Teacher teams that fail to work together in making course designs, on the other hand, leave students confused due to the serial and parallel teaching tactics employed by various teachers (Tolerance.org, 2015).
To effectively lead teacher teams, a team leaders must build instructional capacity and consensus among various teachers in the team. He/she should be respectful, time conscious, goal oriented and should exhibit much professionalism in the course of his/her duty as a leader. The Team leader should incorporate members in decision making by giving them a chance to contribute on how they would like the team to operate. The incorporation of team members in decision making is vital since the success of the school will have resulted from the combined efforts of teachers in the team (Naesp.org, 2015).
A good team leader in the course of leadership must create an environment where every teacher feels comfortable while making suggestions, asking questions or providing feedback. A conducive atmosphere would ensure teachers feel free when sharing responsibilities, identifying problems, offering feasible solutions or working collaboratively on a plan meant to implement agreed upon solutions. A good teacher leader should have a high level of commitment and innate desire to serve. He/she should exhibit leadership traits and a spirit of dedicated volunteerism. A good teacher team leader should also be honest, equitable, nonbiased and should not be coerced into taking the position by others (Naesp.org, 2015).
I recommend the use of teacher teams at the Palmer Ridge high school in Colorado so as to increase the interaction between teachers and students. Creation of teacher teams at the school will help improve students’ performance with time. Trading groups can work best in the school where teachers should teach topics they can best deliver. Trading groups help enhance students’ performance to a great extent since they are taught in a clear and interesting way by teachers who are most qualified in the particular topic. Implementation of such teams at the school will, therefore, ensure student development is achieved, and they are in a position to perform better. Such teams can be formed when teachers who teach various subjects laisse and form a teacher group. Each teacher should then pinpoint the topics he/she is best in so that he/she can help in teaching the particular topic in the course of the semester.
Teacher teams should be encouraged in schools since they lead to an improvement in student performance as a result of quality teaching. Students can understand concepts more easily since various teachers approach the same topic from different angles leading to its extensive coverage. The combination of teacher strengths also helps in improving the delivery of poor teachers in a supportive and non-threatening way as they are all oriented towards the achievement of a common goal. The evaluation of students by a team of teachers is also more insightful and balanced than that done by an individual teacher.
Drummond, H. D. (1961). Team teaching: An assessment. Educational Leadership, 19, 160-165.
Naesp. Org,. (2015). Retrieved 1 December 2015, from https://www.naesp.org/resources/2/Principal/2008/M-Ap28.pdf
Tolerance.org,. (2015). Ten Steps to Implementing a Teacher Team Initiative at Your School | Teaching Tolerance. Retrieved 1 December 2015, from http://www.tolerance.org/ten-steps-implementing-teacher-team-initiative-your-school
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