02: Maintaining studentsí profiles
While setting the tone in the initial classes, the teacher gets an opportunity to observe her pupils carefully and gets to know their nature, likes and dislikes. Of course her first impressions may be totally wrong. She can constantly update her analyses by maintaining students’ profiles. Time permitting, she can record elaborate observations. The more data she has, the better modifications she can bring about in her strategies, thereby ensuring that neither she nor her students are stressed.
Usually, if her planning and strategies are correct, a majority of her students can manage on their own and do not find the annual targets difficult to achieve. Her task would then get reduced to monitoring their progress. In the case of those (few) who are finding the targets too difficult or too easy, her observations will help her find alternate strategies.
In fact her records on students’ growth (academic) are sufficient to assess and evaluate her children. She can bring in correctives early and ensure that a child’s year is not wasted. If she is lucky enough to convince the administration of her methods of recording students’ progress, she may even get them to do away with tests and exams (we will see later in the course how tests and exams seldom evaluate English skills). This is an enormous saving of time and students have an opportunity to compete with themselves instead of their classmates. This strategy cannot be used in isolation. It needs many other supporting strategies. These will be discussed later on in the course.