Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Amazing Things are Happening Around Us

treasureIn How Did You Get Your Kids to do That? on the PCHSdirectorBlog, Dave Meister talks about seeing great things around the school going on and states,

“I have spent too much time talking about how we need to change, how we need to integrate technology…etc… When it comes to making things “work” in school, I have missed emphasizing the golden examples that will change motivation for both staff and students. The answer is not some magic bullet that some teacher or principal just blogged about, it is not some new wonderful tool that allows people to create new meanings and experiences. It is concentrating on the work of the students. Finding those examples of exemplary student work that exist in every building and ask the question: ‘How did you get your kids to do that?’“

If you get a chance to read his post, it is wonderfully inspiring and motivating. It really made an impact on me.

I think I need to get out more and see what others are doing. I know the excuses:

· I don’t have time.

· I am too busy.

· I have to get ready for testing.

· Maybe tomorrow.

· When I have time.

· I want to but…

I think it has come to the point where I need to make time. I need to see what is going on around me. I need to see what techniques are being used in other classroom. I need to see what students are talking about and how they are working in other classes. What are they responding to and how are they responding to this?

When I find something is great going on, I need to further the conversation by talking to that teacher. I need to know how it is being done and how can I modify it for my own classroom. How can I try to do the same thing and meet my student’s needs?

Maybe I will find out that it won’t work for my students or my personality, strengths and teaching styles won’t work with this but I won’t know if I don’t try. Then again, maybe I will hit a gold mine and find out it works wonderfully with my students and I like doing this.

Sometimes by going on this “treasure hunt,” I can find out what other teachers find inspiring. They can help send me to the classrooms that they like. Maybe this spark can set off a flame in other teacher’s heart and I can start a “movement!” Wouldn’t that be exciting?

Have you see something that made you want to ask a teacher, “How did you get your kids to do that?” If so, please share!

Posted on the Successful Teaching Blog by loonyhiker (successfulteaching at gmail dot com).

Original image: 'Contre-jour'


Anthony Purcell said...

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I really enjoy reading what you have to say. I think it is important to get out of our rooms and the mind set of "my test scores will be higher than theirs" and really start to collaborate and share ideas. There are amazing things happening all over, why do we not enjoy and boost other teachers up?

Perfecting Parenthood said...

What about the concept that, as teachers age, they slowly lose touch with the generations coming in. I can imagine that when a teacher starts, she is totally tuned and engaged. However, the generation starts to drift, while the teacher drifts less or in a different direction. After awhile, teachers need to ask the question "How did you get your kids to do that?"

I think the kids change. You're right, teachers need to look around and change too.

I'm a parent right now, and I know pretty much exactly what my kids are thinking. As they grow, I will continue to try, but when I have teenagers I can imagine that I won't understand a five year old any longer.