I love chatting with my colleague about approaches to pedagogy and how to encourage teachers to reflect and grow. This week’s conversation gets us thinking about a shift in focus required for (some) beginning teachers… and some who’re not beginning.
We attempt to define it. Is it a shift in focus from:
- Teaching to learning?
- Teacher centred to student centred?
- Work to learning?
- Short term to long terms goals?
- Content to process?
- All of the above?
How often do you say these sorts of things in your classroom?
- This is how you need to do the task.
- Don’t publish till you show me what you have written.
- Your answer is ok but it’s not the one I’m looking for. (not necessarily in those words)
- This is how you can improve your work.
- Don’t move to the next step till I say so.
- Stop (in the middle of what you’re doing/thinking/learning) and listen to my instructions.
- I want you to…
Are you depriving your students of opportunities to make decisions and reflect on them, learn from mistakes, become independent learners, think for themselves and… really LEARN?
What are the effects when teachers say things like this? (Observed in class visits this week)
- What do you think is the best way to go about this? Why do you think so?
- Create your own experiment, if you think it will be more effective.
- How would you teach this to students of any age of your choice?
- It doesn’t matter what I think, what do you think?
- How and why would you go about developing new vocabulary? (second language)
- You know more about this than me, what do you suggest?
- What did you learn about yourself as a learner?
Consider your practice….
Are you providing opportunities for meaningful learning?
Or are you and your students ‘doing school’?