A.) In my opinion, the three most critical talents a teacher must possess are patience, creativity, and adaptability. Through the years I have grown to understand the saying, Patience is a virtue. I feel it is a gift to have the patience to work with a large group of children, whose needs and abilities range at different levels. Everyone becomes frustrated during his/her profession, but a teacher must have the ability to hide those frustrations so the happiness of every child will be ensured.
Most people associate creativity directly to artists and musicians because of their natural born talent. Not all teachers can draw or sing, however their minds are creative. Teachers are given a curriculum full of skills and concepts that their students must master by years end. Therefore, it is the responsibility of an educator to engage the children in as many exciting and fun learning experiences as their imaginations can foster.
Adaptability, the power to change easily to fit different conditions, is a critical talent that a teacher must possess in the classroom. If a lesson is unsuccessful and the students are confused on the skill that is being stressed, a teacher must adapt to the learning situation. By changing his/her approach to the material, students become enabled to better comprehend what is being taught. As a first year teacher, I feel I possess all three of these critical talents.
B.)Though my experiences in the classroom are limited to my first year teaching and student teaching, I have always contemplated how I would use technology as a source of learning. My plan is to incorporate the use of technology through learning centers, since they will be a vital part of my classroom. A computer station will provide students exposure to programs that are age appropriate. These programs will focus on areas of mathematics and reading, both of which are crucial to a childs education. Some programs I have implemented are Reader Rabbits Kindergarten, Dr. Seuss Kindergarten, and Math Circus.
A listening center adds a real-life dimension to the stories because they make the books come alive for children. During my kindergarten practicum I incorporated a listening area that contained a listening post with headphones, a tape recorder, and sometimes a compact disc player. The area also contained tapes of books and the actual stories to which the students listened. To add an additional touch, I left blank tapes so the students could record their own stories. The stories for the week always correlated with the theme.
Digital cameras provide a variety of uses in the classroom for both the teacher and his/her students. I have used this piece of hardware to write newsletters, create student portfolios, and record class field trips. My fifth-grade students used this piece of equipment to create class books and projects. In kindergarten, the children used the pictures for taking attendance, writing journals, and making class books.