The Practice of Teaching and Learning of Non-Fiction Texts

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1. Importance of English access the curriculum and wider influences, non-fiction cross-curricular links.

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The study of non-fiction of any kind, be it journalism, letters, history, biography, and autobiography remains to be a fundamental aspect for students (Barbot et al., 2013). Access of curricular containing the subject area has a significant influence on the students who are undergoing the process (Craft, Cremin, Hay & Clack, 2014). Students benefit from gaining knowledge emanating from the curricular studies (Bazalgette & Buckingham, 2013). The first benefit that emanates regards the nature of the information that they would be able to learn from being taught. Journalism, for instance, is a contemporary subject area in the society (Cope & Kalantzis, 2014). Children at the primary level of education have the benefit of gaining knowledge about the issues that may be occurring around them (Collins, 2014). The questions covered by the subject helps them gain a broader understanding of their society such that whatever they learn is a reflection of what is happening (Cremin, 2015). Secondly, the curriculum encompasses the students learning from the curriculum are also capable of benefitting from the ability to challenge the preconceptions entailing the subject area (Cremin & Arthur, 2014). Issues that arise can be contested by the children learning from the curricular resulting in an increase in the understanding of the topic area (Davies et al., 2013).

The teaching of non-fiction as part of the curriculum further serves the benefit of inviting learners to a different perspective of learning (Evans, 2013). For example, students who get the opportunity to learn from biographies, for instance, get to know about the lives of other people. In including the curriculum in the course, it is a chance for the students to be invited into the lives of other individuals (Merchant & Thomas, 2014). A decision to ask the students to learn about the texts as provided by the curriculum is a chance for them to increase their knowledge base in the particular subject area (Ntelioglou, Fannin, Montanera & Cummins, 2015). Further, if the students are invited to take part in the studies, there is the opportunity that they get to understand the condition of the world that they are living (McGeown et al., 2016). Through the same, the students would become more tolerable to cultural diversity whole at the same time being considerate of the others. The inclusion of non-fiction as a core subject area in the curriculum goes beyond helping the student pass exams but rather an opportunity for them to be better individuals. The fact that they get to learn about the reality and the world around them enables them to be better citizens.

2. Statutory arrangements which aim to raise standards of teaching and pupil attainment with particular attention to the significance of grammar within the new curriculum.

The new curriculum introduced in schools need to be that which improves the quality of teaching while enhancing the attainment of pupils with particular regard to grammar. The Department of Education in the United Kingdom has come up with a framework through which the quality of learning of grammar for pupils is enhanced. Particularly, the emphasis is not only on the improvement of the quality of education but the mode of delivery by the particular teachers. The National Curriculum does set out an elaborate, full and statutory entitlement for learning of pupils through to the age of sixteen. There is a guideline as to what would be taught in the curriculum while at the same time setting the attainment targets for learning (Konig et al., 2914). For example, when it comes to the teaching of grammar, the National Curriculum has a framework through which teachings must adhere to for the benefit of the pupils learning the same. The curriculum gives the teachers and students a clear understanding of skills and knowledge young people need to gain from school. Teachers mandated with the task of delivering the subject content have a responsibility of adhering to the guidelines in place to facilitate the delivery of content to the pupils.

Further, the National Curriculum regarding the teaching of grammar to pupils is reviewed on a regular basis as a way of ensuring that it meets the changing needs of the society. The changes are of significance since they help the pupils get better services from the teachers. What they are taught is reflective of the requirements of the curriculum and it is the duty of the teachers to ensure that they adhere to the highlighted guidelines of the statutory arrangement. The statutory method is further organized in such a way that the curriculum is doctored in four primary ways. The first is that it should be possible to challenge the students irrespective of their ability. Second the curriculum is designed in way that it is flexible enough to motivate the students while encouraging their achievement. Third, the curriculum needs to support the institutions and teachers within to work as a team to ensure that they can deliver the programs that are suitable for every student. Finally, in the subject area of grammar, teachers must make sure that they provide the courses in each of the areas that the students can learn and wish to study (Myhill, Jones & Watson, 2013).

3. Examine creative approaches in the teaching of literacy, link to literature and compare with own experiences making reference to lesson plans and evaluations.

Teaching literacy in class goes beyond the usual framework of the teaching coming to class and delivering content as the curriculum requires it. The teacher should come up with creative approaches when teaching literacy. The first approach that should be taken is the incorporation of creative arts. While delivering content to the students, it is vital that the teachers introduce measures such as the use of skills. Pupils should have an opportunity to learn and understand what is being taught in an easier manner. Especially when teaching grammar, it becomes beneficial for the pupils to learn when they apply concepts such as visual arts, storytelling, engage in plays in the form of drama, dance and performing arts (Wray, 2013). The decision to have the children participate in such activities has a positive impact on them when it comes to literacy learning.

Research has indicated that the application of a creative approach where activities such as drama, visual arts, and performance arts are applied has the benefit of improving teaching literacy (Street, 2014). Teachers recognize the fact that through the incorporation of the approach, it becomes possible for the learners to enhance understanding of the subject area that they are being taught. Compared to the usual methodology where the learners have to sit in class and learn theory, the introduction of creative approaches serves to bring in a holistic experience for the pupils. They get to become more engaged in the activity contrary to when the teacher is solely in charge when teaching grammar (Topping, 2015). The active participation of the pupils will positively influence their understanding of the subject area.

On an opinion, I think it is best when creative approaches are applied to the teaching of pupils. Engaging them in such activities as drama or visual arts when teaching has the benefit of improving their understanding. There is the aspect of boredom being eliminated since students are actively participating in the class activities. They get to be part of what is being taught hence significantly improving on their learning. It is vital that the curriculum allows for the incorporation of the creative approaches as a way of boosting the education of the pupils.

4. Evaluate the impact of teacher subject knowledge and pedagogical skill.

Teachers differ significantly in how they deliver content to their pupils. Teacher subject knowledge plays a significant role when it comes to the determination of how they teach their pupils (Borg, 2015). Research indicates that as an educational administrator, there is a need for one to consider the knowledge and expertise a particular teacher would be having regarding a given subject area (Bunch, 2013). The knowledge that a teacher has, impacts positively or negatively on content that they deliver to the pupils (Chai, Koh & Tsai, 2013). A teacher who is knowledgeable enough in the particular subject area is well placed to pass on the same skills to their students. It would be reflective of the academic performance of the pupils. If learners are tutored by an inexperienced teacher, the chances are that they would not be well versed in the particular subject area that they would have been taught (Fisher & Williams, 2013).

Effective teaching by the teachers is reflective of the level of expertise and the subject knowledge that they have. Pupils learning would be reflected in the same manner as to what they achieve from their tutors (Metzler & Woessmann, 2012). High academic achievement may be attributed to the level of expertise and knowledge the particular teacher has in the subject area (Brindley & Marshall, 2014). If the teachers are knowledgeable enough, there is the benefit of ease of acquisition of knowledge on the part of the students while at the same time deepening their understanding (Turner, 2013). Learners who get the privilege to be taught by such teachers are likely to acquire more skills compared to those who have little knowledge in the particular subject area (De Naeghel & Van Keer, 2013). For teachers to efficiently deliver content to the students by the laid down standards, the teachers must be able to comprehend the subject area deeply so that they can help the students in creating cognitive maps while relating ideas to one another (Wingate, 2014). Further, students will also be capable of addressing the misconceptions that they get based on the information that they acquire from the knowledgeable teacher (Zepke, 2013).

Further, teachers must see how the ideas relate to the particular field that they are teaching. The understanding provides a foundation for the pedagogical content enabling them to make ideas accessible to the pupils (Kleickmann et al., 2013). There is a need to ensure that much emphasis is made towards the amount of knowledge that a particular teacher has (Voogt et al., 2013). In ensuring that the understanding of the pupils is promoted, they must have access to the most qualified teachers regarding knowledge and expertise in the particular subject area (Somerville et al., 2013). It is through such measures that it can be possible to end up with children who have the skills needed as they progress in their academic lives (Sadler et al., 2013).


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Brindley, S., & Marshall, B. (Eds.). (2014). Masterclass in English Education: Transforming Teaching and Learning. Bloomsbury Publishing.

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