Friday, June 17, 2016

Catechist Self Examination

It is generally conceded that much of a teacher’s expertise- some would say most- comes from real classroom experiences. However, although experience is a necessary condition for teacher expertise it is not a sufficient one (Lambert & Clark, 1990). If teacher experience heightens a teachers expertise and understanding then it must be reflected on, analyzed, and used to improve practice. It is the constant cycle of experience, reflection, and improvement that marks a teacher’s growth and development; teachers do learn by doing, but only if they reflect upon, critique, and base future actions on knowledge gained by past experiences (Airasian & Gullickson, 1994).

It is that time of the year again, time for you as a catechist to do a self-examination to see how well you are teaching. To find out whether or not you are a good teacher, researchers say that one of the best ways is to use evaluative questions that force catechists to evaluate themselves. In doing this catechists can assess what they know, do not know, and what they would like to know so they can become better teachers. After they self-evaluate they will be able to set goals that they feel they can attain with the new knowledge they have about themselves.

Self Evaluation: Are You A Good Teacher?


That Resource Team said...

Hi Grace,

I loved this post. The evalution was a great little tool you added. As a catechist myself (and a homeschool mom), I can appreciate the reflection process and understand its value, however uncomfortable it may sometimes be. God Bless you.

Amazing_Grace said...

That Resource Team-
I find evaluating myself each year helps in so many ways. I am so glad you found it useful as well. :)

Cynthia Coleman said...

I have another evaluation standard--communication with parents. The last few years I have tried to get as close as possible to a weekly email note to parents. This year, because I received several negative responses to an assignment sheet about Mass ("you can't tell me to go to Mass") I was so castdown that I only sent 2 notes to parents the rest of the year. Not fair to the parents who were not negative and complaining and genuinely would have welcomed more communication (especially as this is the year for their First Holy Communion). Our religious education office does sent a weekly electronic newsletter, and I tried to convince myself that it was a good substitute. In my heart, I feel I failed in not communicating more directly with the families of my students. (And they must also, as I received only 2 thank you gifts out of 14 students yesterday, much lower than is usual in past years. NOT that gifts measure my effectiveness, but I regard it as a sign that the parents weren't happy with me.)

Amazing_Grace said...

Cynthia Coleman- I also do a lot of communication with parents:
Monthly Classroom Newsletter-

Monthly Progress Report & Assignment Sheet-

I am so sorry that you received so many negative responses to the assignment sheet about Mass ("you can't tell me to go to Mass"). I on the other hand would love to see this assignment sheet. It sounds very interesting and a must for all students to do. :)

It is hard to predict how parents will react to assignments and letters. Some like them, others do not. I get frustrated at times too and wonder why I try so hard. Then it hits me because I love teaching about our faith and if I reach just one child a year, then it is worth it. I hope this helps.