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Teacher as Facilitator

Teacher as Facilitator

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Author: Jody Waltman
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In this lesson, you will learn how the role of the teacher shifts in the personalized classroom

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Tutorial

Source: Image of Brown University Education Alliance logo, Fair Use, www.alliance.brown.edu

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In this tutorial, we'll examine the role of the teacher as a facilitator in light of the Brown University Teacher as Facilitator model. We'll begin with an overview of the Brown University model, and then we'll identify some key characteristics of the teacher in a facilitator role. We'll identify some of the research based expectations of a teacher acting in a facilitator role. And finally, we'll share some tips for implementing the Teacher as Facilitator model. Let's get started.

The Brown University Education Alliance Teacher as Facilitator model defines Teacher as Facilitator as follows. "Teachers should develop a learning environment that is relevant to and reflective of their students' social, cultural, and linguistic experiences. They act as guides, mediators, consultants, instructors, and advocates for the students, helping to effectively connect their culturally- and community-based knowledge to the classroom learning experiences."

This model encourages teachers to learn about their students' cultures, to vary their instructional approaches in order to meet diverse student needs, and to locate and use resources within the community. So what does it mean to be a facilitator as a teacher? Here are some of the key characteristics of a teacher acting in a facilitator role.

A teacher as facilitator coaches and guides student learning in the classroom. These teachers use curriculum and pedagogy that are culturally relevant to their students, and they provide opportunities for authentic and challenging problem solving. They teach students to embrace the struggle that is inherent in problem solving, promoting the trait of perseverance in their students.

Here are some of the research based expectations of a teacher as a facilitator. First, implementing culturally relevant teaching helps to develop student competence both within their home culture and in their school culture. Furthermore, teachers should work to create a classroom environment that promotes community and caring. Finally, teachers should attempt to use language that is relevant to students while finding a balance so as not to dilute the content or expectations.

If you're interested in exploring the teacher as facilitator role for yourself in your own classroom, here are some tips. First, learn about and celebrate students' cultures and families, communicate with their families, and try to include aspects of their cultures in your teaching. Implement differentiation strategies, especially cooperative learning groups, book clubs or literature circles, student directed discussion groups, and targeting both the comprehension and language development needs of English language learners as they work on their verbal communication skills.

Finally, provide voice and choices for students, perhaps through the use of project based learning, allowing students to select or design their own action research. Consider including opportunities for students to teach you about their culture, their language, or a unique area of interest. If possible, create opportunities for the students to share this information not only with you, but with authentic audiences as well.

In this tutorial, we explored the teacher as facilitator role. We began with an overview of the Brown University Teacher as Facilitator model, which utilizes culturally relevant curriculum and pedagogy to help meet diverse student needs. We identified some of the key characteristics of the teacher in a facilitator role, and we listed some of the research based expectations of teachers taking on this facilitator role. Finally, we shared some tips for implementing the Teacher as Facilitator model in your classroom.

Here's a chance for you to stop and reflect. Have you considered including aspects of the various cultures represented in your student population as you plan your instruction? Do you think that your teaching would currently be considered culturally relevant to your students?

To dive a little deeper and learn how to apply this information, be sure to check out the additional resources section associated with this video. This is where you'll find links targeted toward helping you discover more ways to apply this course material. Thanks for watching. Have a great day.

Notes on "Teacher as Facilitator"

(00:00 - 00:32) Introduction

(00:33 - 01:19) Brown University Teacher as Facilitator Model

(01:20 - 01:51) Key Characteristics

(01:52 - 02:21) Research-Based Expectations

(02:22 - 03:23) Tips for Implementation

(03:24 - 03:54) Review

(03:55 - 04:28) Stop and Reflect

Additional Resources

The Education Alliance at Brown University: Teacher as Facilitator

This is a site focused on teaching diverse learners. This particular posting provides a clear overview of the role of the teacher as a facilitator using the what, why how format. Each rationale is supported by research.
http://www.brown.edu/academics/education-alliance/teaching-diverse-learners/teacher-facilitator


Strategy: Culturally Relevant Literature

This comprehensive source provides research based strategies and resources for teaching literacy and language acquisition skills using culturally relevant strategies. Each page of the document provides a clear explanation of the strategy along with the necessary resources to carry out the strategy.
http://notebook.lausd.net/pls/ptl/docs/PAGE/CA_LAUSD/LAUSDNET/ABOUT_US/INITIATIVES/AEMP/CAG_AEMP/CAG_AEMP_PRO_DEV/CAG_AEMP_PRO_DEV_FALL_EDUC_SEMINARS/INSTR_STRAT_SELS%20.PDF


More References

Brisk, M. E., & Harrington, M. M. (2000). Literacy and bilingualism: A handbook for all teachers. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Daniels, H. (2002). Literature circles: Voice and choice in book clubs and reading groups. Portland, ME: Stenhouse.
Daniels, H. (2002). Literature circles: Voice and choice in book clubs and reading groups. Portland, ME: Stenhouse.
Ladson-Billings, G. (1995). But that's just good teaching! The case for culturally relevant pedagogy. Theory into Practice, 34(3), 159-165.
Padron, Y. N., Waxman, H. C., and Rivera, H. H. (2002). Educating Hispanic students: Effective instructional practices (Practitioner Brief #5).
Yedlin, J. (2004, January/February). Teacher talk: Enabling ELLs to "grab on" and climb high. Perspectives.