Teacher’s Position in the classroom.Basic of basic = Actors don't look at the script on the stages.



... Continued from the previous blog.

If you leave from the teacher's desk, you can't see the instruction plan on the desk. So you never be able to leave there. If so, your instruction would be the worst level that is definitely amateur.

Needless to say that it's important to prepare your instruction plan in detail. It's also important to write your plans down to the planning papers. It's also important to practice as much as you can and to simulate for avoiding the situation that you stop in the middle of the class lessons.

But when you started your class, you should never look at such the "papers". You should abandon the papers. If you often glanced at the papers, the students will become anxious.

You should do your class by just only something in your brain's memories. That would be helpful to keep your rhythm and tempo of your class. You can do more flexible interaction with kids.

Looking at the instruction plan during your class is as same as actors look at the script on the stages.

Teacher’s Position in the classroom. Basic of basic = Teacher who can't move at all


I said earlier when you have to make an important question you should just stand without moving and face your body toward the students and try to be conscious of making eye contact with each student.
Teacher's moving too much position would be harmful to students.
On the other hand, there are some teachers who can't move at all in the classroom.
They can not go out from just really really narrow space.
It's also a problem.

Teacher’s Position in the classroom. The basic teacher's position in the classroom.


Or you would have a standing position like this.

The standing position that you go through between the students.

I often stood the path between the students' seats that was the second or third place from the front. Mr.Yoichi Mukoyama and Mr.Yoshihiro Noguchi also often stood at this place.
This means that you can stand really close to kids.
So I call this standing position as...

The position that you can send your energy to kids.

When just only you stand nearby kids, the kids tend to focus on the lesson. This is one of the effective positions.

Teacher’s Position in the classroom. The basic teacher's position in the classroom.


I wrote that the basic teacher's position in the classroom is the place where you can look around every student clearly in front of the room.
This place would be great of course. But aside from this, my other favorite place was...

the place where shifts your position to the corner a little.
Because you can see all the kids well when you see from an angle than right in front.

Teacher’s Position in the classroom. The basic teacher's position in the classroom.


The basic teacher's position in the classroom is the place where you can look around every student clearly in front of the room.

1. You should just stand without moving.
2. You should face your body toward the students.
3. You should try to be conscious of making eye contact with each student.

When you have to make an important question for students, it's quite natural that you should do like above.
You should definitely avoid that you write something on the board during you make questions and directions. In the situation, you will take your back toward the kids. While you are writing, naughty boys become to make the paper planes fly with glancing at your back. Girls become to pass the letters out to peers.

Teacher’s Position in the classroom.The most basic of basics = moving too much.


... Continued from the previous blog.

Quite a lot of teachers just hang around without meaning.
If you have the students who have the developmental disorder in the front seat of your classroom, this round trip of the teacher might be so stressful stimulates for the kid.
It may be possible that the bad stimulate of the teacher themselves make the kid annoyed.
The worse news is the kid can't notice "Why am I annoying?" and the teacher can't understand "Why is this kid annoying?". It's totally tragedy.

Teacher’s Position in the classroomThe most basic of basics = moving too much


... Continued from the previous blog.

Quite a lot of teachers just hang around without meaning.
If you have a specific objective to move it's OK of course.
I'm really annoyed when teachers just go to the right and the left in front of the classroom over and over again repeatedly just like a White bear in a zoo.

*The stereotypical behavior of the White bear would be caused by stress usually, so It may be impolite to the White bear to compare to us. Sorry.

No.4. Position (Moving in the Classroom)


The teacher's standing position in the classroom is so basic skill as same as the "smile", "tone of voice", "eye contact".
I think you should take it in an undergraduate teacher training module or training seminar for the rookie teachers and should have mastered before coming into the real classroom.

But in fact, even quite veteran teachers tend to say,

"It never crossed my mind."
”This is the first time that I've ever heard of it.”
"I'd like to do it from tomorrow as soon as possible. "

I think it's as one of the problems in the teacher training system in Japan.

No.4. Position (Moving in the Classroom)


What is the "Position and Moving in the classroom"?
I'll roughly show you something. Even among very basic issues, I can give points as below.

1) The teacher's position that is moving too much and the position that is staying to still.
2) In the classroom that can control the children's engagement.
_1. approaching the children.
_2. approaching the specific child.
_3. standing by the child who is talking.
_4. standing apart from the child who is talking.

<Moving around the classroom>
1) The basics of "Moving around the classroom"
2) The basics of "Checking the children's notebook"

Checklist of The Basic Skill for teachers ~ No.3. Eye contact


Checklist of The Basic Skill for teachers

~No.3. Eye contact

  1. You can do your class lesson without looking at teaching plans or notes.
  2. Even when you read some textbooks as a model, you try to make eye contact with students.
  3. Even when your students say something or in case of one to one tutorial, you can see the whole of class students.
  4. During your class, you can make eye contact with every student at least one time.
  5. When you make students do some activities, you observe students in clear points of view.
  6. You can find the slight movement of students who want to say something.
  7. You can concretely reenact a class lesson that you observed just one time.

The place where Mr.Mukoyama got the skill of eye contact.

目線2.jpg... Continued from the previous blog.

Mr.Mukoyama said that from that time, he became to be conscious about "professional eye contact".
That is the same sense that I felt at his seminars.

The story is just based on my memories so I'm afraid that the details of the story are inaccurate. He told me the name of the band and guitarist but I'm not sure about these anymore.

Anyway, after hearing this anecdote, I became to be focusing "the eye contact" more consciously. If you want to be a super professional and you'll get money to show something in front of the people, you have to make efforts these things including eye contact. If whether you are an idol, a comedian, a magician, a lecturer, a teacher, you have no exceptions as long as you are a professional.

During your lecture, I think you made eye contact with me many times.

Recently I become to be told like this at last.
I'm glad if I've become to get a skill of eye contact even slightly.

The place where Mr.Mukoyama got the skill of eye contact.

... Continued from the previous blog.

" Hey, It's just here where I got the eye contact."

He said.
I couldn't grab the meaning.
I was just like freezing meaninglessly and looking at him.
He continued.
"I went to the dinner show that was held on the top floor at this Hotel."
(the dinner show? The eye contact?)
"I noticed that the guitar player on the dinner show had been gazing just only me during playing the guitar."
I finally understand.
He said that the guitarist never saw the scores, her fingers while playing the guitar of course. She always just made eye contact with audiences.
He added.
"I've fallen under the delusion that she was playing just only for me."

The place where Mr.Mukoyama got the skill of eye contact.

Shinagawa Station in Tokyo.
Be through The gate for Takanawa.
You can see the enormous building in front of you. That is Hotel Pacific ( it's SHINAGAWA GOOS Now)
It seems more than ten years ago. We had a team meeting for making teaching materials held by TOSS at the top of the floor of this Hotel. It was so luxury hotel at that time.
After the meeting, the members were moving on to dinner restaurant respectively. When I just got on the elevator, I happened to be with Mr.Mukoyama in the elevator. We are just the only two in the small elevator room by chance.
I didn't have the courage to talk to him of course. I was just freezing with so nervous. Then Mr.Mukoyama talked to me with a very mild tone of voice.

" Hey, It's just here where I got the eye contact skill."

The skill of eye contact and the ability of reenactment are deeply connected.


... Continued from the previous blog.

I mean that it won't work if you see some groups of students as a flock roughly. Instead of that, you should watch each individual one by one clearly.
And adding to that, you should see the class as concrete images and your brain store the images and later if you have some stimulus then you could reenact it.
These kinds of super professional gazing skills are deeply connected with the ability of reenactment.
That's why you can create some dramatic stories in your classes.

Furthermore Super professional eye contact skills


... Continued from the previous blog.

The second episode is like this.
Mr.Mukoyama went to observe the PE class in the 1st grade.
They were learning how to jump over the boxes.
At the end of the class, the teacher made kids in a row and let them jump the box in order. Some kids were good at jumping and some weren't of course. The ways of jumping were really various in each kid.
After the class, Teachers got gathered and had a discussion about the class.
Mr.Mukoyama remarked something in the meeting but it wasn't a usual way.

He reenacted all the way of jumping in all of the students just one by one respectively and indicated what was the problem in every student's case.
They tried to confirm what he said by video, then all of his indications were accurate.

About 30 years later from the time, He said to us remembering the episode. "Honestly, I thought I was amazing myself. I can't do the same thing now anymore."

Furthermore Super professional eye contact skills


... Continued from the previous blog.

Mr.Mukoyama came down from the stage, went to the girl who was by the wall, and he said,

"When did you have the attack?"

She had an asthma attack. He let her go to the nurse's office to rest and ask some treatment such as observing for a while.
He looked at hundreds of the whole students at a time from the stage of the front.
Among them, he noticed just a subtle movement that was seemed like inhaling a deep breath by one little girl, then he took action immediately.

"I think those days were when I had an ability that I could take the information about the students most by just looking at."
I remember that Mr.Mukoyama said so.

Furthermore Super professional eye contact skills


There are too many episodes of eye contact (...gazing) skill of Mr.Mukoyama.

The following two episodes are just in my memory. I guess these were told by him in a seminar, or I've read in books. I'm afraid something in detail is not correct. But in the context of the story, it would be almost true.

The first one is the scene that Mr.Mukoyama was teaching all of the students in the grade at the gymnasium. You can imagine the hundreds of students spreads and exercised in the gymnasium.
Mr.Mukoyama was on the stage in the front.
And during exercise...probably it was radio calisthenics...he noticed just a slight movement that made a little strange in a moment. So he told to all of the students should be paused.

Super professional eye contact = you can reenact things you saw

 ... Continued from the previous blog.

It's obvious that Mr.Mukoyama didn't try to memorize intendedly.
The trainee just happened to ask him so he recalled the class scene.
The class wasn't his class. He didn't know about the students in the class well.
Asking from the trainee was just by chance.
He didn't any preparation for the instruction to the trainee.
He just looked at the students with the trainee when the trainee was moving around the classroom just at once.
And just only in this condition, he could recall all types of mistakes that were made by all respective students, and explain every kind of mistakes connected to 19 students in sum.
He didn't jot down any information on a notepad.
Unless the trainee asked him, he needed to recall nothing.
That is one of the examples of professional eye gazing skills and the ability to reenact.

Super professional eye contact = you can reenact things you saw


One day, Mr.Mukoyama was asked by an educational trainee after the class that the trainee showed.
The trainee said to Mr.Mukoyama "Please tell me something about my class lesson."
The answer that Mr.Mukoyama gave him was below.

"I would like to tell you just one thing."
I said. Then I recalled the class lesson.
"While you had the students do math practices, you were moving around the classroom, weren't you?  What did you try to look at that time?" ...
"And furthermore, you are wrong." ...
I drew the figure of the classroom and explained that all respective students made what kind of mistakes specifically.

The point is that he said "I would like to tell you just one thing" and then he "recalled the class lesson".

Super professional eye contact = Can recognize students who want to say.


You can recognize students who want to say.

The students who want to say something make their little finger move.

The first time I read the information above that was mentioned in the book of Mr.Mukoyama, I couldn't believe it.
Because I didn't have enough ability. When I was a rookie teacher I just tried to estimate something just only in my experiences, in my perception
But it is true that you can recognize students who want to say.

Let me describe a little bit more accurately about "their little finger move".
That is like,

"Little finger's subtle movement would be a trigger and it makes 'back of the hand' or 'whole of muscles outside the arm ' jerked a little".

After spending the teacher's life for more than a decade, I became to be able to see it.

Mr.Mukoyama found the person who wanted to speak even in a seminar room that was crowded by hundreds of people.
"Mr.Oku, You wanted to say something, didn't you!"
I watched these kinds of scenes that he called someone this way several times.
Mr.Oku himself said later in his surprised face,
"Yeah, I certainly wanted to say at that time. Why Mr.Mukoyama knew that?"

Super professional eye contact = Amazing episodes of Mr.Mukoyama.

...continuing from the previous blog

And furthermore.
Mr.Mukoyama added words like this,

" The figure you mentioned right now, I appreciate that just only you wrote it."

Yes, he concluded that "Just only Ono" who wrote this. That means he watched all of the notebooks written by all students in the class, and he determined no one wrote the same thing as Ono.

1. He called Ono and let him speak because he recognized Ono's fingers moved in subtle.
2. While Ono was speaking, he recalled the contents of Ono's note using just an image of moving around the classroom.
3. Furthermore, He concluded that there were no students who wrote the same thing as Ono.

He executed these three things as his choice at the same time, the same place, in a second.
How much could children trust the teachers who could make these kinds of episodes?
This is the "Professional level of eye contact".

Super professional eye contact = Amazing episodes of Mr.Mukoyama.


Then, surprisingly, after Ono told something in the class, Mr.Mukoyama said like this.

"Hey, you, I'm sure you have more things that you wrote down. Let you read it."

That means while Mr.Mukoyama was moving around the classroom he remembered things that Ono wrote down on his notebook
We have a video that recorded this scene. The screen quality and angle are not so good. But as long as we can see in this video Mr.Mukoyama was going around the desks of students just twice. I guess that he looked at Ono's notebook on these trips.
I was really really carefully analyzing this video.
So I have to say that the moment that Mr.Mukoyama could see Ono's note was just only once. Mr.Mukoyama went through without looking Ono at the second time.
The first chance, probably just a moment, less than a second, Mr.Mukoyama memorized things that were on the notebook.

Super professional eye contact = Amazing episodes of Mr.Mukoyama.


One day. Yoichi Mukoyama gave the temporarily class lesson at certain schools in Niigata Pre. The theme of lesson was "Population in Edo era." But the theme isn't the matter now.
The scene that Mr.Mukoyama called the students whose name was "Ono" is the matter now.
He said,

"Does anyone else have something to say?
Hey, Ono, I think you definitely have.
Because your finger is moving.
Go ahead, Ono."

If you got the skills of picking up the students who wanted to say something, it's not so hard to find these students.
At that time, Mr.Mukoyama called Ono, because he found his finger was moving just a subtle.
Of course, it's not common. We are surprised even just only this anecdote. But I can let you know more.

How long seconds does Mr.Mukoyama stop his eyes?

Could you guess about the longest seconds Mr.Mukoyama was stopping his eyes?

7 seconds.

It was 7 seconds. That is the time of duration that he kept gazing at the same area.
It wasn't just once or twice but many times.
That meant like you were feeling absolutely gazed constantly.
That is one of the secret skills of making you feel like "He was kindly gazing just only me!".
How do the eye movements of skillful teachers move, and how do they stop? And how long seconds did they stop? We should learn more about eye contact skill that makes students recognize that you look at them.

How long seconds do Mr.Mukoyama's eyes stay?

When I felt that Mr.Mukoyama was gazing at me all the time at the seminar, I was so surprised that everyone in the room felt as same as me.
Then I attempted to measure "the way to stay" of Mr.Mukoyama's eyes. I attended a seminar and measured how long seconds Mr.Mukoyama's eyes stayed at certain points with a stopwatch. During the seminar I just looking at his eyes and recorded the time on the notebook.
As a result,

The average staying time of Mr.Mukoyama's eyes is 2 seconds.

2 seconds.
It would seem quite a long time. You can feel this length if you will try to do it. If you can stop your eyes for 2 seconds students definitely feel you contact your eyes at them.
And anyway it's just an average. Needless to say that his eyes sometimes stay longer.
OK. Could you guess about the longest seconds Mr.Mukoyama was stopping his eyes?

The gaze of the skillful teacher stops tightly just a moment.

Sometimes I am asked questions by young teachers
" How can I train my eye contact skills?"

Generally, they say the way like,
" You should move your gaze from the corner of the classroom to forward like drawing the letter Z. "
It might be one of way to train but I've never done like that. I guess Mr.Yoich Mukoyama didn't do as well.

The gaze of the skillful teacher won't flow.

Stops tightly just a moment.

Precisely, it seems like stopping tightly at a certain place just a moment and moving on to the next place and stopping tightly again.

How long does it stop?
In my experience, students will do feel you look at them even if your eyes stop just "0.5 seconds".

I would like to say the case of Mr.Mukoyama next.

Professional level of eye contact (2)

After the seminar, at the party, I happened to be able to set my seat nearby Mr.Mukoyama.
So I said to him.
" Mr.Mukoyama, I felt you seemed like looking at me always during your lecture today."
Mr.Mukoyama was smiling a little and said,
" Oh, really? "
Just it.
That let me down a bit. But I couldn't give it up so taking a microphone and did a speech to attendees like,
" Today, I thought Mr.Mukoyama seemed like looking at just only me during his lecture. Did anyone else feel like as same as me?"
There were about 100 people in the party room.
I was really surprised that all of them raised their hands. All of them.
" Mr.Mukoyama kindly looked at just only me."
This perception was not only mine but all of the participants.
I had lost my words.
These kind of things were beyond my understandings at that time.
Anyway, it's just a simple starting point of "professional level of eye contact".