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When you're teaching a bunch of students, what are you doing other than talking and listening? Not much. That's why these skills are so important.
You have to be able to listen effectively to your students. You need to be able to convey to them that you care about what they say and you also need to understand what they are really saying rather than just hearing the words coming out of their mouths. (In other words, you need to understand what they mean when they say things like "this is stupid...")
You have to be able to get your point across to your students without boring them. This is a hugely important aspect of teaching. You can't let your explanations drag on and on.
Oral and listening skills are at least half of good teaching, in my opinion.
In regards to listening skills, I think that this is something that needs to be actively taught. Students can hear what is said, but what do they do with that? I always remind myself that students don't just magically take notes from a lecture, much less a discussion, and need to be taught that skill. I do a variety of note-taking strategies to train them to listen carefully. For example -- I give skeleton outlines; a tell them directly to write something down; I model note-taking on the board or on projection screen; I provide them a variety of graphic organizers to complete in a logical fashion. All of these things help students realize what a skill it is to listen and discern what needs to be in their notes.
Students are usually not great at listening, instead, they simply "hear". If I feel that they are not really processing what is going on, I might pair them up and have each member of a pair explain something about the topic to the other student and have the other student "share out" what his or her partner said. That is an excellent way to get them to focus and really listen. I also try to get them to ask and answer questions and present projects to their peers. It is really important to encourage discussion and give them an environment where they are not afraid to speak. Speaking in public is another very important skill for our students to acquire.
I think that the skill of listening is something we must teach our students to do. As someone else said many times students hear you but they are not really listening. As teachers we need to take time to teach our students how to be active listeners.
Listening as a teacher helps me to evaluate, both formally and informally, what a students skills and needs are. From the oral skills perspective, most students will tell you that in at least one class, and often much more than that, they are bored. While I don't like to think of teachers as entertainers, it's also illogical to expect students can learn about things they are not interested in. It's my job to communicate the relevance and importance of my subject, and that's all in the delivery.
I once had a professor who gave out 2 or 3 answers on tests, but he spoke softly with his head down as though he were looking at a book. The first time I heard him say, "The answer to number 16 is a," I looked from my test at him, startled by what I was not sure I had heard. The professor smiled as I searched to identify others who had heard him around the room, but everyone else had his or her head down. Now, my hearing ability is below normal, but having been made to listen at home and at school and when learning a foreign language, a skill was honed, I guess. Of course, the point is, for the student, often the teacher imparts important information, information which will most likely be on an exam.
Good oral skills are essential in all walks of life. For the teacher, a humorous or a clever delivery grabs student's attention. while holding their attention with a variety of descriptive and explanatory words and engaging them in the conversation is essential. Knowing how to communicate effectively is paramount.
What is the importance of good oral and listening skills for effective communication in the classroom?
Focusing on students' and teacher's role
Although the best lessons come from firsthand experience, one lifetime is not long enough to learn everything we can benefit from knowing. But we can and do learn from the many experiences and teachings of others, that is, if we listen. By actively listening to educators in the classroom, students are better prepared for exams and can ask questions when details are unclear. Likewise, listening to students can help an educator identify problem areas within his teachings and adapt his approaches for the students' benefit.
Read more: Importance of Listening Skills | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/about_5412365_importance-listening-skills.html#ixzz1HdzvrDsT
When communication is effective, both the student and the teacher benefit. Communication makes learning easier, helps students achieve goals, increases opportunities for expanded learning, strengthens the connection between student and teacher, and creates an overall positive experience. In general, people want to be heard. If a teacher shows interest in a student's opinions, that student will feel that their thoughts or ideas are appreciated. This increases self esteem and confidence. A confident student is less likely to second guess his answers on tests, and a self-assured student is more likely to speak up in class. Class participation leads to increased learning for the entire class. Teachers who reward student communication and class participation will notice an improvement in overall class performance. A teacher can gauge the effectiveness of a lecture by student feedback. By asking questions, a teacher can determine if students were able to retain the imparted information. If there are a lack of responses from the class, it is likely that the students were unable to understand the lecture. This can lead to poor performance on exams. A degree of communication is required in every profession, and communication skills are necessary at even the most preliminary stages of career growth. For example, an applicant must be able to communicate her skills and abilities during an interview in order to acquire a job.
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