Senior High School English Teachers’ Roles Under the New English Curriculum

He teaches in the society in accordance with his special responsibilities he takes and with the roles he plays. Therefore he is required to be quite sensitive to its expectations and perform rightly and appropriately with his due roles and to change his role rightly and timely with the development of the society and with the changes of his specific responsibility he takes. The educational reform in China requires the study of teacher’s roles. The reform of senior high school education in China at present has been leading to a radical change of educational beliefs which are certain to demand a great change of teacher’s roles.

In China, the reform of senior high school education has widely aroused people’s attention. In order to promote the implementation of the new curriculum, experts and researchers of teaching have begun their study of changing teaching methods. Therefore, this thesis dedicates to the research of how the senior high school English teachers today should change their role under the condition of the New Curriculum, and hopes to bring up some new ways apt in teaching. 2 The significance of New Curriculum 2. Embodiment of the Essence of Education The course of education is a course of ideality. Its essence is to strengthen the spiritual power of human beings. Plato wrote in his most famous book Utopia the true notion of education through a metaphor told by Socrates: The “True Education” is to guide people, its soul, and spirit to reach an authentic world, from darkness to brightness, from an opinion-based world to a truth-based world (Socrates 129). This guidance of spirit is in fact the guidance of one’s living.

Knowledge and skills are the ladders by which the soul could climb to a higher level. Our ancient classical book The Great Learning penetrates so straight to the point that “The way of achieving great learning started with one person’s knowing of the morality, carrying on by performing nice to the other people, and having the goodness in one’s heart. ” (?????? 15). The purpose of learning is to reveal the morality in one’s heart, to make a fresh start of one’s life, and to keep a person’s mind in the stage of best morality.

Apparently, in modern or ancient times, in China or elsewhere, almost all the great masters of education believed that the essence of education is to perfect the spiritual world of human beings. And the Curriculum standards must be responsible for the developing and growing of students. In the examination-oriented education system, a student is no more than a container of text-book knowledge. The duty and responsibility of a student is to process knowledge no matter how much it actually relates to reality.

The actual use value of the knowledge has been ignored; the activeness of the students has been killed. Paper mark is an evaluation tool for every thing. The Ma Jiajue event of a school boy murdering his three roommates made us feel chilling and begin altering. May I ask how this type of students could have a positive attitude towards the challenges in society? How could they cooperate with people and pursuit a further development?! There is an old Chinese saying “To teach a student six years, a teacher must foresee his sixty years of life. This is the social responsibility of a teacher. To educate students, a teacher must not only make them masters of the textbook knowledge, but also masters of the method and strategies of learning. A teacher would form a positive mental attitude and active desire of the students and guide them enjoying the happiness through the pursuit of success, build up the student’s sense of accomplishment, and make it the motivation of making progress.

New curriculum standards proposed a “tool” (an effective tool for high school English teacher to guide the students) and “humanism” (the new curriculum put humanism as its core) is the unification of the basic characteristics of English courses. The purpose of the study by English students is to improve the English literacy and lifelong learning for students and lay the foundation for the development of personality. Here, “exploring ability” and “personality development” received full attention. And the ability to understand and get to the point of the curriculum integration, appreciation, nderstanding, development, innovation has become a real purpose. Evidently, the new course is surprising, it really practices a “people-oriented” concept of education, reflects the nature of the education. 2. 2 Reflection of the Policy of Education The New Curriculum reflects the actual need to fully carry out the guiding principle on education. We should establish accurate values on education and fully carry out the guiding principle on education in order to bring up quality talents of a new era.

The values on education of a lower gradation are to educate individuals and pay too much attention to the chase of making a living or angling for material profits and prestige, but to neglect or depreciate the values of a deeper gradation formed by a full development of individual characteristics and magnificent states of mind. As the human being itself has a potential of many-sided development, the mission of education is to turn the students’ potentials into developing reality.

It’s not only the fundamental concept of democracy but the basic right of every student that all of them could develop themselves. The principle to evaluate the standard of lessons reflects two ‘Faces’-firstly, face the fully rise of students’ qualities and secondly, face the entire group of students. This kind of education can make every student develop himself more completely, which is stipulated by the guiding principle on education and also the intrinsic reflection of carrying out ability oriented education. 3 Suggestions on Senior High School English Teaching

During a live observation on English teaching in senior high school, it seems common that the teaching materials are making use of teachers, rather than the teachers are using teaching materials. Needless to say, this phenomenon will definitely affect the quality of English teaching in senior high school and as a result, we’re not able to achieve the goal of English learning which is brought up by ability oriented education. What should senior high school English teachers do to deal with this phenomenon? 3. 1 New Educational Concepts as the Guidance The new education concept refers to the changing from giving undue mphasis to English language techniques into paying close attention to the development of students’ entire personality and cultivating their positive attitudes as well as encouraging them to learn how to get information and use it creatively. While in the process of senior high school English teaching, the English teachers should transfer from purely emphasizing instructing students in the complex, troublesome and dull English knowledge in books, into providing basic and various information connected with real life for the students, in order to widen their field of view and make English study more effective and interesting.

While talking about the manner of the senior high school English teacher, the new concept requires the teachers changing from teaching knowledge of isolated courses into connecting different but related courses with each other and encouraging students to study by experience, investigation and introspection. With respect to the senior high school English teaching evaluation, the new concept suggests the education transferring from emphasizing distinguishing good from bad, selection in contest, demarcating ranks, etc. nto promoting every student’s improvement of capability and respecting the diversity of personalities and levels of understanding, so as to help them all gain the feeling of success. And with respect to aspect of the relationship between teachers and students, the new concept suggests the shifting from centering on teachers into considering students main, seeking the equal conversation between teachers and students and joint improvement in interaction. 3. 2 Renewal of the Education Capacity

The English teaching ability refers to the English teachers’ structure of knowledge and ability and they should not only have basic knowledge and ability of English language, but also multiple elements consisting of education, psychology, management, art of literature, philosophy and so on, which will make a composite effect. Owing to this composite effect combined with knowledge of various courses, the senior high school English teachers should renew his/her education capacity.

He/she should not only make creative use of new teaching materials, organize fully directed English teaching contents and instruct students’ lessons effectively according to the education principle. He/she should teach according to one’s ability. What’s more, they should inspire the students’ motivation of learning to the full extent and ensure their healthy study in order to achieve the final goal of cultivating the students’ ability to learn throughout their life. 3. 3 Building-up of the Self-development Approach

Teachers aren’t able to renew knowledge, learn throughout their life and search for self-development. Through lack of approaches to development subjectively, as well as objective reasons such as busy work of teaching or a heavy burden of housework, some teachers have to live on their own limited fat gained in school and without doubts, it’s difficult for them to adapt to the continuous development of the situation of educational reform. A number of senior high school teachers complain about the new edition text-book and the general requirement of the new curriculum.

They used to teach in a traditional way. They as well feel indifferent to the new material in the textbook and don’t know how to teach it to the students. In order to make full use of the new teaching material and raise the quality of English education, there’s no doubt that firstly we should establish a new modern educational concept. 4 New Classroom Roles of Senior High School English Teachers What roles should the 21st century senior high school English teachers have?

The society informationization and knowledge economy development of the 21st century propose our education on the intense transformation request; the traditional way of study is transformed to the innovative study. This request the teachers to change from the traditional 40-minute teaching role to the shepherd, the organizer, the participant during the educational process, the teacher must have bigger compatibility and flexibility. With the social development today, the science and technology developed rapidly, the computer and the information technology also have a widespread application in teaching.

The relationship between the teachers and students is already not completely the simple transmission and acceptance pattern, sometimes the student may acquire knowledge from other channels, they even know in certain aspects comparable more than some teachers do. Teacher’s authoritative status has been threatened; the teacher and students relation becomes more and more complicated. The teacher’s role also multiplies. Having the ability to form the fine personality and the multiplex knowledge tructure of the students, and mastering many skills while specializing in one are requirement for teachers today. The teacher must have rich knowledge and many kinds of abilities. Moreover, it is also the duty of a teacher to form the students’ spiritual world, fills the instructive and the creative essence. In the modern society, the teacher has not only changed with the traditional performer’s basic function, but also has to transmit the experience directly. The students must participant the learning activity.

The teacher must guide the students to explore in the environment which he carefully designs. The teacher is no longer a pure transmitter, but also students’ companions, activity organizer, the supporter and helper in the process of students’ learning activity. I will discuss the teacher’s role mainly in the following part. 4. 1 Teacher as Organizer As is said by Doll, an American expert in education, the teacher’s status in the relationship between teachers and students is “a chief in equality” (Doll 191). This conversion requires teachers to step down from the altar filled with “teacher’s respect”.

And the teachers ought to interact and explore with the students standing on the same flat and help them grow up, mature and become worthful. To organize means to form into a whole with mutually connected and dependent parts. The success of many activities depends on good organization and on the students knowing exactly what they are to do. To be an organizer, senior high school English teachers have to organize the activities and teaching stages successfully in the classroom. Teacher’s organizing of the class roughly includes two parts— psychological organization and the organization of activity.

The central idea of psychological organization is to stimuli students’ motivation. The main aim of the teacher when he organizing an activity is to tell the students what they are going to talk about, and to give clear instructions about what exactly their task is, get the activity going, and then organize feedback when it is over. For example, for the topic discussion, the teacher can assign students to groups. Jeremy Harmer (1983) noted that the organization of an activity can be divided into three main parts. First the teacher gives a lead-in.

Like the lead-in for presentation or for the treatment of receptive skills this will probably take the form of an introduction to the subject. In senior high school English classrooms, teachers can tell students what they are going to talk about during this period. The teacher and students may briefly discuss the topic in order to start thinking about it. He/She should give clear instructions. When the lead-in stage has been accomplished the teacher instructs. This is where he explains exactly what the students should do. Finally the teacher initiates the activity, which is to get the activities going.

He gives a final check that students have understood. So the teacher’s job is to organize the activity as efficiently as possible, frequently checking that the students have understood. Once the activity has started the teacher will not intervene unless it is quite necessary for gentle correction or promptness. During the first year of teaching senior high school English, role play helps the students to use the language flexibly. While students play their roles on their own, the teacher may walk around the classroom to listen to their talks. When necessary, the teacher can also give guidance and advice.

After role play, the teacher can ask students to perform in class, and then make comments on their work. 4. 2 Teacher as Guide As is said by ancient people, Teachers are the people who spread logic, teach lessons and solve confusion. The new standard of lessons requires a conversion from “teaching lessons” to guiding the students to participate in English activities actively, think by themselves and cooperate in investigation, which aims to develop the students’ abilities to gather and cope with information in English, to gain new knowledge, to analyse and solve problems and to communicate and cooperate.

The basic requirements of a teacher as a guide are as follows: 1) To help students to set up right and feasible goal, both long and short term. Once the short goal within the long-term goal is reached, students may be filled up with happiness of success which further motivates them forward. 2) To make classroom activities interesting and meet the needs of the students.

The teacher can present language in meaningful contexts, elicit language from students, make instructions clear to everyone by using a variety of techniques (cards, texts, ICT, open questions), manage pairs and groups to maximize practice, monitor individuals and groups, stand back and view the whole class, try to meet the needs of all irrespective of gender or ability, praise warmly, correct when appropriate, confirm and welcome good use of the target anguage, smile and enjoy their job, with general qualities of sensitivity, flexibility, humor, enthusiasm and stamina (similar to those required by the average parent). Moreover it’s particularly important to separate the role of the motivator from the role of the expert. Teachers often easily play the role of expert often; hence miss the chance to motivate their students. 4. 3 Teacher as Participant To be a participant means that a teacher may take part in the classroom activities.

A teacher might join simulations as a participant. However, the teacher should be careful not to dominate, although the students will both allow and expect this to happen. Instead of being the dominating authority in the classroom, the teacher facilitates the communicative process among all the learners and between the students and the various tasks, giving guidance and advice when necessary. Furthermore, teachers may act as independent participants within the learning-teaching group.

Any unnecessary intervention on the teacher’s part may prevent learners from becoming genuinely involved in the activities and thus hinder the development of their communicative skills. Once a teaching activity is in progress, it is still the teacher’s obligation to develop the students’ potential through external direction. Although the teacher may be nondirective in general, it is still the teacher’s responsibility to recognize the distinctive qualities in the students (Han 1979) and to help the students develop those qualities.

In senior high school English class, in different settings, students may be asked to attend different activities. Teacher should not be afraid to attend these activities. It can improve the atmosphere in the class. For example, when students talk about current events, students are willing to listen to different people’s opinions on the topic. Sometimes when the whole class takes part in a debate, teachers can also act as a chairperson, or offer students help when it is needed. 4. 4 Teacher as Trainer

We used to say that the teachers should have a bucket of water in order to give the students a glass of water. However, this idea should also be changed, which demands the teachers not to limit themselves to knowledge and experience in their mind, but according to the demands of the students, to choose and exploit English teaching resources, design and launch kinds of English teaching activities, open up the room for teaching, guide the lessons into a larger range, strengthen the relation between the English language learning and social life reality.

In short, the teachers should help the students to carve out the source of knowledge. As strategy trainers, the teachers describe, model, and give examples of potentially useful strategies; they elicit additional examples from students based on the students’ own learning experiences; they lead small group or whole class discussions about strategies including activities designed to raise students’ awareness of strategies and the learning process as a whole, as well as activities designed to teach students how to use a specific strategy.

It is a fact that some senior high school English teachers already use many activities in their classes that can be considered “strategies-based”. However, what seems to be missing is the awareness on the part of the students of what those strategies are or how to get those strategies to work for them. Effective strategy use is often associated with better students, those who have already “mastered” the learning process. Thus teachers may well be making a real contribution to facilitating the learning process by discussing selected strategies explicitly in the classroom.

In class, senior high school English teachers can explain the purpose of the language activity, or call attention to how the teacher has organized the course materials e. g. laying out the range of possible strategies for reading a text in order to summarize it, addressing the many strategies associated with writing a coherent summary. 4. 5 Teacher as Creator of a Positive Environment This is a change of the teacher’s role in nature. This conversion requires that the teachers should “push the students forward” instead of “pulling them along”, and ‘motivate the students’ instead of “pressing them”.

What’s more, the teachers should help the students to establish a proper goal for English learning, confirm and correct their paths chosen to achieve this goal, and inspire them to develop themselves actively by means like spur, encouragement and commendation. Senior high school English teachers should provide positive classroom environment for students. Classroom climate refers to the atmosphere of the classroom, its social, psychological, and emotional characteristics (Dunkin&Biddle, 1974). The importance of lassroom climate as it relates to motivation derives from the notion that teaching is leadership intended to affect classroom behaviors. Classroom climate is often described using such terms as warm, cold, permissive, democratic, autocratic, and learner-centered. The climate in the classroom is largely established through teacher-student interactions. In China, teachers teach students English in non-target environment, which is different from those in the natural environment. Therefore it is more important to create a good learning environment.

Teachers here play an important role in providing a supportive environment that encourages students’ motivation, self-confidence, curiosity and desire to learn, and input and production. According to the findings in the investigation, this role also has positive effects on students’ achievements. The investigation shows that Teacher A provided the best language environment among the three classes. From the classroom observation, it can be found that A’s English is excellent. This shows that the teacher’s ability of creating the positive environment has much to do with the teacher’s language proficiency.

In order to provide positive environment, the teacher has to: 1) Be capable of speaking fluent English. 2) Give students as many opportunities as possible to practice English. 5 Conclusion This thesis aims at analyzing classroom roles of senior high school English teachers under the requirement of new English Curriculum. This thesis firstly introduces the significance of the new curriculum from two aspects: new curriculum embodies the essence of education, at the same time; it reflects the policy of education. Secondly, according to the new curriculum, the author gives three suggestions on senior high school English teaching.

The suggestions aim at bringing out new concepts on high school English teaching as well as renewing the teacher’s education capacity and building up self-development approach. Thirdly,in order to set up the roles as scientifically as possible, the author investigates students’ expectation and analyzes the relationship between the teacher’s roles and the students’ achievements. The author makes a profound analysis of each role and gives further suggestions. With limited study and knowledge, the explanations in many places are rather weak. The study can only be considered as a start for further insightful researches and findings.