ATTITUDE OF STUDENT TEACHERS TOWARDS TEACHING PRACTICE: A CASE STUDY OF COLLEGE OF EDUCATION, WARRI, DELTA STATE (GUIDANCE AND COUNSELLING PROJECT TOPICS AND MATERIALS)
Background to the Study
The aim of any teacher programme is to turn out good and dedicated professional teachers. This aim no doubt demands both knowledge that is academic competencies, skills and practical experiences oh how to put theory learnt in general education, general principles of teaching into practice in the classroom.
Teaching practice has been an aspect of teacher education right from the time immemorial. Andrew bells introduced in (1788) the memorial system whereby an experienced teacher used some selected pupils in the school to teach other school pupils, while the experienced teacher sees himself as an overall supervisor and inspector of work being done by the monitorial teacher in training.
The pupil teacher system which succeeded the system is another form of teaching practice whereby a pupil teacher were attached to an experienced teacher during the school hours to carry out his pedagogical work from partaking careful note of how the master teacher taught and managed classroom as well as the department and comportment of both teacher and pupils. Just like any other student apprentice teacher, the pupil teacher was occasionally given the opportunity and allowed to try his hand on handling the class for the experienced teacher to watch critically and make comments.
However the monitorial teacher system seem to be this traditional form of teaching practice exercise. It is now a fact quite undisputable that until recently teachers education was almost entirely practical.
Although it is still the most common element in the training programmes, its modes of operation has been largely restricted. When teacher training was given in a small off Campus College, the professional training in classroom and school management method of teaching was the province of the master or mistress method in the operation, it was essentially an apprenticeship system has undergone some considerable innovation and changes.
It is now the concern of universities, faculties of education, teachers education to use the aspect of psychology, sociology and philosophy of education, all embodied in a way which are directly relevant to the student in his or her preparation for teaching practice, consequently for his or her classroom management, all in the effort to make student teachers good, effective and efficient classroom teachers. Objectively the traditional system of teaching practice lack this theory aspects, because it did not provide the condition necessary for giving the student-teacher the most effective support.
In the modern concept of teaching-practice training experience which are according to Akande (1982) observational and experimental. In the former case, student teacher watch and observed the experienced teachers at work or their own colleagues trying out, perhaps for the first time some method they have discussed, while the latter experimental is towards providing experienced.
In experimental, the actual teaching practice exercise requires a more prolonged stay in the school, so that the student teacher can put into practice the general and principles they can gain experience in dealing with teaching as a continuous living relationship and also as professional trained teacher in making. This allows the student-teacher to see that real teaching is not just a mere series of lessons taught by a teacher, but a growth of understanding developed in the children, as lessons cannot be taught but learnt.
Sometimes some student teachers feel both ill-prepared for the situation that faces them in the classroom because they are not sure of themselves. Most of them are incompetent of the task of the classroom because of classroom failure for them to accomplish the task set for them. This eventually lead them to be exasperated because some of their fellow students are competent and compose enough to carry out their task pedagogically to the challenge of teaching practice. Why no student teacher can really expect to be fully prepared to meet the demand of the classroom in teaching practice programmes is because he or she may anticipate reasonably that the help got prior to his or her to do perfectly well, but that is not true because that is the essence of teaching practice. Teaching practice is primarily designed to evaluate the quantity and quality of professional training that has taken place in a student-teacher after exposing him to certain professional learning experience in the classroom.