With millennials now coming into the teaching profession, we're starting to notice some changes in the methods of teaching. Millennials are commonly known as the unique generation. As a millennial myself, we grew up with technology. We're well-versed with social media, smartphones and can easily adapt to the latest technological advancements.
But more importantly, millennials have broken down several walls of traditions, especially in teaching. Millennials are known to be outspoken and flexible and they are bringing these traits into the classroom.
Millennials are definitely at the forefront of changing the landscape in the teaching sector. And in this post, we are going to look at 6 ways at how millennials are making a positive impact to teaching.
1. Flexible teaching methods
With millennial entering the teaching profession, they are also carrying over their mindset into both the classroom and their teaching methods. One characteristic that has been observed within the millennial generation is that they value their individuality. Millennial teachers know every student is unique and have their own learning style.
2. Thinking outside the box
Since millennials are the children of the digital revolution, they have consumed and are continuing to consume a great deal of information in comparison to their predecessors. So they've not only been exposed to more knowledge, but they have also been exposed to different perspectives and new ways of thinking.
Millennial teachers will often try new teaching methods they've come across on the web or even experiment a new teaching method they've thought of themselves.
3. Flipped Learning
Traditional classroom management involved teachers instructing their students to be silent whilst they teach or explain the concept from the syllabus. Whilst traditionalists will argue this style of teaching is effective because it encourages students to listen and pay attention, millennials are not entirely convinced.
Millennials are aware children have difficulty paying attention for long periods of time, so we are now seeing millennial teachers adopt an inverted style of teaching known as flipped learning.
Flipped learning is where students are introduced to the learning materials before the class. And classroom time is used to deepen the understanding of the learning materials through discussion and problem-solving activities organised by the teacher. This type of learning is more interactive and encourages more student-teacher engagement.
4. A Different Kind of Classroom Management
Millennials teachers are known to be flexible, both in and outside of school. In the classroom, we see millennial teachers giving their students more independence, control and trust to cultivate their own productivity.
To give you an example, in the US, some schools (but not all) have incorporated a traffic-light cell-phone policy where students have the option to listen to music during independent work time during class.
Although many will debate if listening to music can enhance learning, there are numerous studies which support how music (without lyrics) can stimulate concentration and productivity in certain students.
5. Participation and Diversity
Millennials are known to be outspoken and they want to be heard. By incorporating this particular value in the classroom, millennial teachers will encourage their students to participate in classroom discussion or activity. They understand every student will have their own point-of-view, and they know by exposing other students to different perspectives will encourage students to be more open-minded.
And this brings me back to my previous point that I mentioned about flipped learning. Since millennial teachers are encouraging discussion and participation, students will also realise there is not a single way to solve a problem. This way, creativity is also being fostered and utilised in the classroom.
Millennial teachers are more understanding and show more empathy. They tend to understand the basic needs that determine the student's ability to focus in the classroom. If one of their students was unable to get a good night's sleep because they were babysitting, millennials will appreciate that they will not be able to absorb the learning material. Also, trauma can affect different students in different ways. Taking consideration of all these factors that happen outside of the class can affect school performance, and millennial teachers take this on board.Comment below with your thoughts about millennial teachers and what they have to offer the modern classroom. If you're interested in inspiring others and becoming a teacher yourself, there are several teaching courses to pick from.