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We can say that education is the mother which has given birth to the concepts like teaching, training, tc. Teaching is an
important part of the process of education. Being a teacher, your professional engagement with teaching is the most
important activity in your life. But when it comes to defining teaching, you may find it difficult to use the exact words. So,
we shall start this unit with a discussion on the meaning and characteristics of teaching. The two terms, teaching and
learning are intimately related to each other. Here we shall highlight the relationship of teaching with learning. Teaching is
a social phenomenon. In earlier times, society used to accord a very high place to teachers. But the nature of society is
changing with time and so the role of teacher in society has also been changing. We shall discuss in detail the changing
role of teacher in society.
As a teacher the first and foremost thing you must know is what does teaching actually mean? Is it just simple telling and
testing? No, teaching is much more than that. It is the complex art of guiding students through a variety of selected
experiences or activities towards the attainment of appropriate teaching-learning goal. Let us try to understand the
concept of teaching by relating it to the term education which we have already discussed under units 1 and 2. The three
focal points in education are the teacher, the student and the subject matter. Teaching is a relationship which is
established among these three focal points in education. It is the process through which the teacher brings the student
and the subject-matter together. Different educationists have defined teaching in different ways. Let us now have a look on
some of the definitions and characteristics of teaching in the following sub-sections.
Definitions of Teaching: There are many definitions of teaching each of which is valid and pertinent from its own point of
view. The following are some of the definitions of teaching that demand our attention.
According to Burton, Teaching is the stimulation, guidance, direction and encouragement of learning.
H.C. Morrison (1934) said, Teaching is an intimate contact between a more mature personality and less mature one
which is designed to further the education of the latter.
In the words of Clarke (1970), Teaching refers to activities that are designed and performed to produce change in
students (pupil) behavior.
According to Thomas F. Green (1971), Teaching is the task of teacher which is performed for the development of a child.
Characteristics of Teaching: Some of the characteristics of Teaching are discussed below:
1. Teaching is a social phenomenon: Teaching is influenced by social and human factors. But human and social factors
are dynamic i.e. they are continuously changing and evolving and so teaching is also dynamic.
2. Teaching is causing to learn: Teaching is a task that teacher does with his students for causing the latter to learn
3. Teaching is an interactive process: It is carried out for the attainment of some specific purposes and objectives.
4. Teaching is both art as well as science: It is the name of giving scientific form to art of skills by using suitable methods
and strategies.
5. Teaching is both formal and informal: Teaching is conducted both inside the classroom and outside the classroom.
6. Teaching is a tri-polar process: The three poles in Teaching are students, teacher and subject matter.
7. Teaching is professional activity: The teachers are professionals and they use their professional skills on their
pupils in a planned manner.
8. Teaching is basically a communication process.
9. Teaching provides guidance, direction and encouragement to the learners.
10. Teaching can be observed, analyzed and evaluated.
Relation of Teaching with Learning:
We have learned that teaching is the interaction between the teacher and the learner, under the teachers responsibility in
order to bring about desirable change in learners behaviour. Now you may ask me, what is learning? In short, we can say
that learning is the process of bringing desirable and stable changes in the behaviour of students. Learning occupies a
dominant place in the field of education. Learning is the focal point at which all the activities and processes of education
converge. Now let us a look on the relation of teaching with learning. In this connection we can mention Robertson, an
educationist, who has defined the relation between teaching and learning in the following words
Teaching is a generic term which denotes actions undertaken with the intention of bringing about learning in another.

So, we can say that teaching is effective only when it results into learning. Teaching would be worthless and meaningless
if learning is not produced.
According to another educationist Cage, The process of teaching and learning must be adapted to each other so as to
make whatever combination of procedures pay off best.
Therefore, where teaching must make a central concern of the process of education, the leaning, in turn, should be make
a central theme and goal for every kind of teaching.
As such, as teachers you have to generate appropriate teaching conditions and select appropriate teaching aids so that
your students may be able to learn effectively. Your teaching will be effective only when it results into maximum learning in
your students. As you go through this course, you will be able to discover how to design appropriate teaching activities for
creating favorable learning conditions for your students so as to bring about desirable changes in them.
Q 1:
Write whether the following statements are
true or false.
i) Teaching is a very complex activity. (True/False)
ii) Teaching is a relationship. (True/False)
iii) Teaching takes place only in a formal setup. (True/False)
iv) Learning occupies a focal point in the process of education.
Q 2:
What are the three focal points in education? How does the
teacher bring the student and the subject matter together?
Write your answer in around 25 to 30 words.
The Teacher is a maker of man and history.
Both teacher and God are standing before me, but I dont know, whom to bow first. I will bow to you my teacher, who has
guided me to God.
Teachers are literally the arbiters of a nations destiny Dr. Zakir Hussain
The teacher is considered the yardstick which measures the achievement and aspiration of the nation.
In the ancient days, teachers enjoyed a very high position of respect and honor in our society. In the Vedic and post-Vedic
periods the place of the teachers was second to that of God. They were kept on the pedestal as Gurus. Even the kings
used to sit at their feet. The teacher or guru was regarded as the guide who used to bring light whenever there was
darkness. The teachers also considered their work as a very honorable activity. They worked with a sense of selffulfillment and self-realization. They were expected to lead a life of self-denial, free of worldly things.
Even though the teachers no longer enjoy the same position of being second to God as they did in ancient days, still it
cannot be denied that in the emerging Indian society also they have been playing a very pivotal role in the social
reconstitution and in the transmission of wisdom, knowledge and experience from one generation to another. Regarding
the role of teachers in society, Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan has aptly remarked, The teachers place of society is of vital
importance, he acts as the point for the transmission of intellectual tradition and technical skill from generation to
generation and helps to keep the lamp of civilization burning.
Children are the potential wealth of a nation. Since classrooms are controlled by class teachers, therefore the children are
always exposed to the influence of the teacher. Hence, the teacher seems to play the most dominant role in moulding and
shaping the attitudes, habits, manners and above all, the character and personality of the young students. Thus, we can
say that the progress of the nation and of mankind depends to a large on the teachers. The teachers occupy an important
place in the society as an architect of our future generation. In this connection, the Kothari Education Commission (196466) has also stated, The destiny of India is now being shaped in her classrooms.
In our Assamese society also the teachers are looked upon by the society as the wisest men in the community. They are
regarded as the backbone of the society. Whenever there arises a conflicting situation in the society or in a family,
particularly in the villages of Assam, everyone, whether educated or not, turns to the local school teachers for advice. The
teachers by using their wisdom help to solve various problems of the villages, and thus they play the role of a social
reformer. Therefore, in our society the teachers have to play multifarious roles according to the demand of the situation,
such as, social leader, decision maker, peace setter, adviser, etc. The National Policy in Education, 1986 thus comments

on the role of teacher in the society as follows: The status of the teachers reflects the socio-cultural ethos of a society: it
is said that no people can rise above the level of its teachers.
Moreover our modern society of 21st century is characterized by explosions in various areas such as explosion of
knowledge, explosion of technology, explosion of expectations, explosion of population, etc. As a result, there have been
fast changes in socio-economic life of people. These changes make a heavy demand on the knowledge a child possesses
and the role, he/she is going to play in the future. As the child grows older he/she will be called upon to face and solve
more and more complex problems. Changes in societys life demand corresponding changes in education and as a
consequence the role of teacher undergoes changes.
It is, therefore necessary for you to realize that you as a classroom teacher can help the society in achieving an all-round
development by acting as a powerful agency in transmitting the cherished values of our culture to the future generation.
As a teacher, your duty is not limited inside the classroom only. You owe a duty to the society and the nation. You have to
play the role of a custodian of the national values and also an architect of new values. You are the one who can help our
country in the social reconstruction. So, you must recognize your role as one of the most influential persons in the society.
You must keep your knowledge up-to date to understand the problems of the country and also must make a sincere effort
to create such a climate in which our society can move forward. With the changing time, you must be able to act as a
change agent for modernization and development of the society. You must develop your capability to work as a social
worker by organizing programmes in non-formal and adult education, awareness programmes in health and hygiene,
population issues, environmental challenges, etc. Also, in order to equip the child to face the challenges of a changing
society, you must keep on upgrading your knowledge and competencies throughout your professional career by attending
conferences, refresher courses, orientation courses, seminars, workshops and through extensive study, traveling and
developing a capacity for independent thinking, etc. In this connection, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, in his book India 2020 A
Vision of the New Millennium has rightly remarked,
If you are a teacher in whatever capacity, you have a very special role to play because more than anybody else it is you
who are shaping the future generation.
Q 3:
Fill in the gap in the following sentences:
i. The teacher or guru was regarded as the ................... who used to bring ................... whenever there
was ........................
ii. The .................. of India is now being shaped in her ....................
Q 4:
What are the various kinds of roles which the teacher has to play in our society? Write your answers in around 20 to
25 words.
What is the need of a professional development course for a teacher? You will get your answer after you go through this
section. In the above section we have learned about how teachers occupy a central position in any nation as they are
engaged in the noble task of preparing the citizens of tomorrow. Since the progress of a nation depends on the quality of
the school education which in turn depends on the quality of its teachers, therefore, it is very necessary that our teachers
are well trained, competent and dedicated enough to carry out this responsibility of shaping the future of our country and
also to act as a change agent in the society. It is believed that elementary level education serves as the foundation stage
for future academic and social lives of children and thereby also serves as the foundation for building the bright national
future of the nation.
Now let us come to the elementary education scenario of our state, Assam. It has been found that the quality of
elementary education in Assam is quite low in that of comparison to that of some of the developed states of India. As per
preliminary report of Census 2011 the literacy rate of Assam is 73.18% which is below the national average of 74.04%. It
has also been found that many of the children drop out of school before completing class VIII. There are various reasons
for dropping out of children from schools, such as poverty, early marriage, physical health of students, uninspiring school
environment, etc. Out of the many contributing factors for unattractive school environment, the major factors are found to
be inefficient teaching, physical and mental punishment given to the children and highly irregular attendance of the
teachers themselves. In Assam, most of the school students are found to be the victims of corporal punishment.
One of the main reasons for this sorry state of affairs of our schools, particularly the government-run schools is found to
be the lack of adequate professional training on the part of majority of our teachers. We have mentioned above that the
elementary education is the foundation on which the super structure of the entire educational system is built and the

responsibility of laying that foundation lies on the shoulders of classroom teachers. Therefore, to improve the standard of
our elementary level education, there is an urgent need that our teachers develop themselves professionally by
undergoing a rigorous professional training course.
Moreover, one of the salient features of the Right to Education (RTE) Act-2009, which came in to force on April-2010, is
that every school teacher must obtain an adequate professional degree in teaching within a period of five years from the
date of commencement of the Act so that along with the free and compulsory education, the children will also get quality
education. In Assam, the State Cabinet approved the RTE Act on July 5, 2011 thereby making Assam the 19 th state to
implement this act. With the implementation of the RTE Act in Assam, it has become compulsory to obtain a diploma in
elementary education for all the teachers of Assam both in-service and pre service to teach at the elementary level
So, it must be clear to you by now why there is a need for you to undergo a training course to develop yourself
professionally. Now let us discuss in brief how this course will help you in your professional growth and make you a better
teacher. It is however not meant to say that lack of training will necessarily make you a very bad teacher and that training,
by itself, is sure to make you a very good teacher. To be an effective teacher, along with the professional training you need
to have some personal qualities such as honesty, punctuality, cleanliness, dedication, affection, impartiality, etc. Still,
professionally trained teachers can be more effective than untrained teachers, since the training course itself tries to
imbibe these personal qualities in the teachers. Now let us proceed to examine the various professional qualities which
are required to become an effective teacher and how this professional training in particular can help you to acquire those
qualities. These are discussed more elaborately below.
i. Professional Training enables teachers to have a better understanding of the students Since the aim of teaching is an
all-round development of the personality of a student, as a teacher you must have a thorough knowledge of child
psychology and principles of pedagogy. This training will enable you to understand the child better and will help you to
deal with your students / children scientifically so as to bring about their all-round development.
ii. Professional Training boost teachers confidence Teacher training is essential to build confidence in the teacher. As a
trained teacher, with the scientific knowledge of class management, you will be able to tackle any odd or problematic
situations in the classroom with confidence.
iii. Professional Training is important to have mastery over teaching skills A thorough knowledge of the subject matter on
which you teach is a must for you to be able to face your students confidently. But as a teacher, along with the knowledge
of the subject, you also require various skills to communicate the knowledge effectively to your students. Some of the
skills are: skills of planning and preparing classroom instruction, classroom management, guiding pupils, teaching
techniques, evaluating the progress of the students, contact with parents, etc. This training will help you to master these
iv. Professional Training is needed to understand the methodology of teaching As a teacher, you should be able to contrive
and use a number of suitable teaching methods and devices. This course will make you familiar with the various
methodologies of teaching and thereby will help you to choose suitable methods and devices according to the demand of
the subject as well as the interest or need of the students.
v. Professional Training develops organization capacity of teacher A teacher should be able to organize, supervise and
participate in co-curricular activities of the school. This training course will help you to develop these qualities.
vi. Professional Training is a must for teaching in a democratic country. A teacher in a democratic country should be able
to teach with zeal and zest and strengthen the democratic setup of the country. This training will help you not only to
become a good teacher but also a good citizen.
Q 5:
What are the major factors responsible for unattractive school environment?
Q 6:
Which Act has made an adequate professional degree in teaching compulsory for the elementary school teachers?

Q 7:
To be an effective teacher you only need to have a complete mastery on the subject matter which you teach. (True/False)


(a) Teaching as a Profession:
The teacher offers the beacon light of knowledge to the new generation for leading a good and useful life in the society. As
a teacher, your main duty is to teach. You know what you are teaching. But you must also know the purpose of teaching.
You are teaching for the individual growth, social progress, national development, etc. We have already
discussed in section 4.4 how the teachers have to play a very vital role in any society or community. Because of their role
in individual and social uplift, the teachers are referred to as professionals and teaching as a profession.
Profession generally means an occupation which requires specialized knowledge or advanced learning. A professional is
one who is able to acquire a fund of knowledge, range of skills in a particular area and apply their knowledge and skills in
the service of humanity. A teacher is considered to be a professional because he/she is a person who needs to be trained
in teaching skills. In fact, teaching is regarded as one of the noblest professions in the world because it helps in the allround development of an individual in mind, spirit and body. The modern society is full of professional persons such as
doctors, engineers, weavers, cobblers, tailors etc. A doctors profession is concerned with the physical side of mans
personality and the engineer looks after the physical side of development social aspects like building roads, bridges,
dams, houses, devising new methods and machines. He enriches national life and adds to the comfort of common and
convenience of the common man; similarly a weaver by making clothes, a cobbler by making shoes, a tailor by stitching
clothes serve mankind by their own professions. Though their professions are useful to the society, still they are limited to
the physical side of human life. But the highest service consists in the all-round development of an individual and this is
carried out by the teachers. The teacher is concerned with the development of the whole child: intellectually, emotionally,
socially, spiritually and, to some degree, physically. That is why teaching has been accepted as the noblest profession.
Every profession has its own professional ethics. The professional ethics means certain code of conduct which should be
followed by every person belonging to a particular profession. Since teaching is a profession, as a teacher, you should
also follow certain code of ethics and maintain high professional standard. The National Council for Teacher Education
(NCTE) has developed certain code of professional ethics for school teachers. NCTE has prepared this document as an
attempt to provide direction and guidelines to the teachers in enhancing the dignity of this very noble profession (NCTE,
The code provides a framework of principles that would guide teachers in discharging their obligations towards students,
parents, colleagues and the community. Each of you as a teacher must try to understand and adopt these as your
professional ethics. These principles developed by NCTE are described below in detail.
1) Obligation towards Students: It shall be our primary duty:
to treat all our students with love and affection

to be just and impartial to all our students irrespective of their caste, creed, religion, sex, economic status,
disability, language and place of birth
to promote their physical, social, intellectual, emotional, and moral development

to respect the basic human dignity of the child in all aspects of school life

to make planned and systematic efforts so that the children can actualize their potential and talent

to transact the curriculum in conformity with the values enshrined in the Constitution of India

to adapt our teaching to the individual needs of students

to maintain the confidentiality of the information concerning our students and dispense such information only to
those who are legitimately entitled to it

to refrain from subjecting any child to fear, trauma, anxiety, physical punishment, sexual abuse, and mental or
emotional harassment

to set before them a high standard of character, discipline and personality

2) Obligation towards Parents, Community and Society:

to establish a relationship of trust with parents or guardians in the interest of all round development of students

to resist from doing anything which is derogatory to the respect of the children or their parents/guardians

to strive to develop respect for the composite culture of India among students, to keep the country uppermost in
mind, refrain from taking part in such activities which may spread feelings of hatred or enmity among different
communities, religious or linguistic groups

3) Obligation towards Profession and Colleagues:

It shall be our primary duty:
to strive for our continuous professional development
to create a culture that encourages purposeful collaboration and dialogue among colleagues and stakeholders
to take pride in our profession and treat other members of the profession with respect and dignity
to refrain from engaging in private teaching activities
to refrain from accepting any gift or favour that might impair or appear to influence professional decisions or actions
to ref rain from making unsubstantial allegations against colleagues or higher authorities
to avoid making derogatory statements about colleagues, especially in the presence of pupils, other teachers,
officials or parents
to respect the professional standing and opinions of our colleagues, to maintain confidentiality of information
concerning colleagues and dispenses such information only when authorized to do so.
(b) Teaching: Its Autonomy and Accountability
We have learned that the profession of teaching demands the teachers to be idealist in thinking and to follow certain code
of conduct. Now, when we try to examine the autonomy of the teaching profession, we find that under the current system
of administration, the teachers have to play a limited role while deciding the goals or objectives of school education, in the
construction or reformation of curriculum, examination procedures, etc. Even though teachers representatives are
included in various educational committees and their opinions are sought, still actually they have the same limited power
like the students in running the administration of a school. However, as a teacher, you can enjoy academic freedom while
dealing with your students inside the classroom. For example, if you want to use a new method of teaching for your
students, then you must have the courage to try the method. Also, you must express your opinion without any fear in
matters concerning the well-being of your school or your students. However, while doing so you must keep in mind that
you are the one who is ultimately responsible for what and how much your students have learned. This means you are
accountable for your action. So with this we have come to the concept of accountability of teachers.
Accountability means that one is answerable for ones conduct, performance of duty, etc. The teachers accountability,
therefore, means their obligation to account for their actions. It is essentially a devotion to the teaching profession and a
commitment to impart knowledge and skills to the students. It is an obligation to discharge ones duty with sincerity and
dedication. Hence, to be accountable implies a sense of moral thinking and an ethical consciousness. By and large, the
teachers accountability implies that a teacher is ultimately responsible to the students, to the community or society, to the
authorities and of course, to your own self. As a teacher, you can show your accountability to your students by giving them
the best possible education and by guiding them towards socially and morally acceptable behavior. In some cases there
may be a conflict between the two socially acceptable behaviour and the morally sound action. For example, in case of
some society drinking alcohol permissible, but actually it is not a morally or physically sound action. In such a situation,
you have to apply your own judgment and accept the viewpoint which is in the direction of the betterment of the society.
You must have a philosophy of your own and your judgment may depend on it. Also, for being accountable to the
students, you must yourself be a learned person. You must have mastery over the subject matter which you teach.
You must have knowledge about the best methods and techniques of teaching and above all, you must be a good
communicator. How you communicate with your students through spoken or written words, your voice, the language you
use and also your body language while you speak - everything contributes to your effectiveness. You are also answerable
to the community or the society for your actions. The society hands over their children to you so that you lead them
towards all round development and also develop in them good manners and ideal behaviour patterns. If you do not carry
out this duty of developing good habits in your students and if you are not discharging your obligations to the society, then
the society has every right to condemn your behaviour. Accountability to the authority is the most common form of
accountability. The service conditions of the teachers require them to obey those who are in superior position to them.
Your work is being evaluated by your superiors. They may be the principals or school inspectors or other supervisors.
These persons rate your work and are supposed to guide you for achieving efficiency and effectiveness in your work. On
the basis of this accountability you may be given increment, reward, etc. Accountability to self implies that as a teacher,
you yourself evaluate your work and conduct. You must perform your duties to the best of your abilities and not because
of any outside pressure but because of your own realization that this is right and virtuous. You should feel morally, socially
and emotionally attached to your profession and discharge your obligations in keeping with the standard of the
professional ethics.

Q 8:
Why teaching is considered as the noblest profession? Write your answer in around 35 words.

Q 9:
Which body has developed the Code of Professional Ethics for school teachers?
Q 10:
Complete the following sentence:
and ............................................
In this unit we have discussed the following matters:
Teaching is a complex activity. It can also be regarded as a relationship among the three focal points in education the
teacher, the student and the subject matter. Teaching is said to be effective only when it results into learning.
The teachers were regarded as next to God in the ancient days. At the present time also teachers are looked upon as the
wisest men in the community. According to the demand of the situation, the teachers have to play multifarious roles in our
society. Also, in order to equip the child to face the challenges of changing society, there is a need for the teachers to keep
upgrading their knowledge and competencies over the full length of their professional career.
There is a very urgent need for the professional development of elementary school teachers of Assam to improve the
quality elementary education which is the foundation stage on which the entire educational structure is built.
Teaching is regarded as a profession and teachers as professionals because of their contribution to individual and social
development. The teachers as professionals should follow Code of Professional Ethics to maintain the dignity of this very
noble profession. The NCTE has prepared certain Code of conducts for school teachers which would guide them in
discharging their obligations towards students, parents, colleagues and community.
The teachers can enjoy autonomy inside the classroom, but at the same time they are obliged to account for their actions.
The teachers accountability implies that a teacher is ultimately responsible to the students, to the community, to the
authorities and to his/her own-self.
Ans to Q No 1:
(a) True, (b) True, (c) False,(d) True.
Ans to Q No 2:
The teacher, the student and the subject matter are the
three focal points in education. The teacher brings the student and the
subject matter together through the process of teaching.
Ans to Q No 3:
(i) guide, light, darkness; (ii) destiny, classrooms
Ans to Q No 4:
The various roles which the teacher has to play in a society
are those of a social worker, change agent or social reformer, leader,
peace setter, adviser, custodian of national values, social architect
Ans to Q No 5:
The major factors for unattractive school environment are
inefficient teaching, prevalence of mental and physical punishment
and irregular attendance of teachers.
Ans to Q No 6:
Right to Education Act (RTE) 2009
Ans to Q No 7:
Ans to Q No 8:

Teaching is considered the noblest profession because, more than any other profession, teaching has the power to create
a healthy, just and progressive society by developing the future citizens of the society in every aspects intellectually,
socially, spiritually and also physically.
Ans to Q No 9:
The National Council for Teacher Education
Ans to Q No 10:
The students, the community, authorities and own-self.
A) Very Short Questions
Q 1:
Define teaching. Write any one definition.
Q 2:
What is meant by learning?
Q 3:
As a teacher of 21
Century, how can you keep your knowledge up-to
Q 4:
Mention the various reasons for dropping out of children from
elementary schools.
Q 5:
Name some of the skills required for a teacher to communicate
knowledge effectively in the classrooms.
Q 6:
On which date the RTE Act-2009 was implemented in Assam?
Q 7:
Why is a teacher regarded as a professional?
Q 8:
What is professional ethics?
Q 9:
As a teacher, in what way can you enjoy academic freedom or autonomy in your school?
Q 10:
What is meant by teachers accountability?
B) Short Questions
(Answer in about 150 words)
Q 1:
List the characteristics of teaching.
Q 2:
Teaching is a generic term which denotes actions undertaken with the intention of bringing about learning in another
. On the basis of this statement write down the relation between teaching and learning.
Q 3:
The destiny of India is being shaped in its classroom
Explain how.
Q 4:
Explain in what way a professional training course can help you to become an effective teacher.
Q 5:
But the highest service consists in all-round development of an individual and this is carried out by the teachers.
Elaborate the statement.
Q 6:
As a teacher how can you show your accountability towards your students?
C) Long Questions
(Answer in about 300-500 words)
Q 1:
Discuss the role of a teacher in the emerging Indian society.
Q 2:
Explain the need of professional development for teachers in particular reference to Assam.
Q 3:
The National Council of Teacher Education (NCTE) has developed certain code of professional ethics for school teachers.
Describe the Code of Ethics as prepared by the NCTE.

Q 4:
Write a short note on Teaching as an autonomy and accountability.