A teacher acts as a philosopher and a guide to the students. He must know the growth and development of the child and his requirements at different levels. Educational psychology helps the teacher to study the ability, interests, intelligence, needs and adopt different techniques of teaching for effective communication. The utility of educational psychology for the teachers has been emphasized in both theory and practices of teaching and learning.
The importance of educational psychology for a teacher can be divided into two aspects i.e.:
(i) To study teaching and learning situations.
(ii) Application of teaching and learning principles.
(I) To study teaching and learning situations
Educational psychology contributes a lot for increasing the teaching efficiency of the teacher in different areas mentioned below:-
(a) Individual difference
A teacher has to deal carefully with a group of students in class room situation. As there, are wide variations in different abilities among the students. Therefore it is very essential to understand the individual difference of students regarding their ability, interests, attitudes & need at different levels of growth and development.
(b) To know the classroom teaching-learning process
A well developed theory of class room teaching and learning is helpful for transacting the content to the students effectively, which includes class-room climate and the teaching competence which are required for effective communication and presentation of content. A teacher must know the appropriate principles of teaching-learning, different approaches to teaching for better result of teaching-learning process.
(c) Awareness of effective methods of teaching
The method of teaching is based on the developmental characteristic of the students. For example History is taught effectively to small children with the help of story telling method because small children like stories. So the classroom teaching depends on the teachers’ knowledge about the interest of students and methods of teaching for the students of different age-groups.
(d) Curriculum development
The course of study of particular degree or diploma is prepared by teachers. Knowledge of psychology is helpful in developing curricular of different levels of students in different subjects. The developmental characteristics and needs of the students are also taken into account in the formulation of curriculum.
(e) To study mental health of students
In the process of teaching & learning activities in the classroom, mental health of the teacher and the taught plays significant role. As the mental condition influence directly the achievement of students. The mental health of teacher and students must be normal or healthy. There are different causes of mental illness of the teacher and the taught. It should be known to the teachers to regulate teaching – learning process.
(f) Guidance to the students
A teacher has to play different roles in school as guide, philosopher, and leader. Guidance is a type of assistance to the students to solve their problems by themselves. The knowledge of psychology enables the teacher to provide necessary educational and vocational guidance to the students of different age groups.
(g) Measuring learning outcomes
Teacher has to perform two important activities in classroom such as teaching and testing. The testing activities help in measuring learning outcomes of the students to judge their improvement and effectiveness of teaching-learning process.
(II) Application of teaching and learning principles.
(a) Objectives of Education
Education is a purposive attempt to bring about desirable changes in the students behavior. The objectives of education are realized in terms of behavioral changes among the students. Teachers have to create the learning conditions to provide knowledge and experiences to the students for the changes of behavior. They have to relate teaching to learning by appropriate method of teaching.
(b) Use of Audio-Visual aids in teaching
· The teacher can take the help of scientific devices. The Topic of presentation in the classroom can be made interesting by involving more students’ participation. Television is a more popular device as compared to radio, because television it provides both audio and visual experiences. Many difficult concepts can be made easy and interesting by the use of audio-visual teaching aids. The knowledge of psychology is necessary to plan and teaching aids appropriately.
(c) Co-curricular activities
Education is to have all-round development of the child. The curricular exercise develops only cognitive aspects of j the child. Therefore other activities like games, sports scouting, girls guiding, debates, cultural programmes are essential along with curricular activities for whole some development of the child.
(d) Preparation of time table
The Class-room teaching of various subjects is organized by perfectly arranged time table. Knowledge preparation of time-table needs thoroughly psychology. As the difficulty subjects like mathematics and science are placed in the first I periods and other subjects like history, geography are usually | taught in the last periods.
(e) Democratic administration
The school and class room administration should also be impartial and democratic. It should provide freedom of expression to the students to explore their innate power. The students problems are to be solved sympathetically through mutual discussion and understanding.
The study of educational psychology is thus very useful for teachers for planning, organizing and evaluating the teaching learning activities in the class.