Maxims of Teaching
Maxims of Teaching: –
The maxims of teaching energize both the teacher and the taught and make them active and co-operative. Maxims of teaching also help in arousing interest and motivating students. Keeping in view the importance of maxims in the teaching learning process, some of the important maxims of teaching are discussed below:-
Maxims of Teaching-
a. Proceed from known to unknown:- The most natural and simple way of teaching a lesson is to proceed from something that the pupils already know to those facts which they do not know. Previous knowledge serves as a solid foundation in the acquisition of new knowledge. For making teaching effective and fruitful, a teacher should proceed step by step to connect new knowledge with old knowledge.
b. Proceed form simple to complex: –
To develop a sense of satisfaction in students, simple and easy lessons should be taught first to be followed by complex and difficult one. The word easy to difficult or complex should be viewed from child’s standpoint not from adults. In teaching, the teacher should begin with the most striking and prominent features of a topic and then proceed to the detail.
c. Proceed from easy to difficult:- Subject matter should be graded in such a way so that children can climb the ladder of subject or lesson with ease and little difficulty. This is possible if easy lessons precede the difficult ones. In determining the level of difficulty, children’s psychological set up should be taken into consideration.
d. Proceed from concrete to abstract: – Children can learn things easily when they can see and handle them. The idea of two plus two is equal to four (2+2=4) is an abstract idea. If the same things are done by allowing children to count two sticks with another two sticks, the idea of four will easily come to their mind. The process of concretization makes learning interesting and lively. A lesson of geography can be made interesting with the help of maps, charts, globes, models, pictures of mountains, river, etc.
e. Proceed from particular to general:- The particular instances are simple, definite and concrete whereas generalizations are likely to be complex and abstract. The process of learning can only become complete if children can proceed from particular and finish with the general rules or definitions. The rules of arithmetic, of grammar, of physical geography and almost of all sciences are based on this principle of proceeding from particular instances to general rules. For example- in teaching algebra, formulae should be derived from particular cases and then applied to solve more problems. So to ensure better understanding both inductive and deductive methods should be applied.
f. Proceed from indefinite to definite: – In the early stages, children’s ideas and knowledges are indefinite and vague. The objective of teaching is to make these indefinite ideas definite, clear, precise, coherent and systematic. This can be done by making children interested in lessons, developing their power of observation and encouraging them to take active part in the process of learning. Every word and idea presented to the child should be clear. For this purpose, the use of pictures, actual objects, diagrams and other devices should be frequently made.
g. Proceed from empirical to rational:- It is generally argued that first of all a child acquires knowledge from the experience of his day to day life and after that they feels the rational bases. So, understanding of rational knowledge is not possible at early stage because children cannot comprehend abstract concepts. Rational knowledge is possible only when children attain some level of mental maturity. Empirical knowledge serves at the base for mental development which in turn leads to rational knowledge.
h. Proceed from psychological to logical: – Logical approach is concerned with the arrangement of the subject matter whereas, psychological approach looks at the child’s interests, needs, mental make and reactions. But for effective teaching subject matter should be arranged in accordance with the mental development of the children. The approach should be based on children’s tendencies, interests, aptitudes, attitudes and reactions. For example- while teaching arithmetic, simple problems should come after the students have mastered counting up to ten or so. Thus, the process of teaching should proceed along psychological lines. Though the aim of education is to make mind more logical and to train the reasoning power, yet the initial approach of teaching should be psychological rather than logical.
i. Proceed from whole to part: – Whole is more meaningful to the child than the parts of the whole. Researchers have proved that the whole approach is better than the part approach. While putting emphasis on whole, one important point to be noted here is that the whole should be integrated in terms of child’s understanding. Moreover, the whole for a slow reader is smaller than the whole for a fast reader. Thus, it is essential to form meaningful whole.
j. Proceed from analysis to synthesis: – Analysis means breaking a problem into convenient parts, while synthesis means grouping of these parts into a complete whole. For example- in language study, children begin with sentences expressing simple idea. These sentences are analyzed into subject, verb and object. This process helps the child to have knowledge about the formation of sentence. But fuller understanding of the meaning of the sentence comes only when words are again arranged so as to make a sentence. Thus, analysis must be followed by synthesis otherwise analysis is fruitless.