Sunday, December 21, 2014

Good Teaching is a Conversation

Good teaching is a conversation.

It's a give-and-take.

It's call and response repeated again and again.

With good teaching, all members of the learning team including students, family members, educators, leaders, and community members share common goals and work together to meet those goals with continual effort, assessment, questioning, response, and refinement.

Good teaching is a journey that morphs and changes as the year takes hold.

No one in the team is the expert, and no one in the team is without voice or knowledge. We bring our strengths together to create and develop a dynamic learning program.

Together, we journey to best effect an engaging, empowering, educational experience for every child.

Students and I will focus on that "conversation" tomorrow as we meet and discuss ways that we can improve our classroom learning community.

I'll say, "The last few weeks represented a big push in the area of mathematical thinking and math operations. Sometimes it felt "too pushy" to me and I thought some students were feeling a bit overwhelmed. That's why I want to pose this question today: How can we make our classroom a more caring and happy learning community? I'd like to hear your ideas. First, we'll brainstorm. Then we'll prioritize. After that we'll make an action plan.  Let's get started."

Then students will brainstorm ideas as I write them own on chart paper. We'll create the action plan and do what we can before the holiday vacation begins.

Giving students and the rest of the learning community voice and choice like this serves to deepen and further the good work we can do together.