Sunday, August 14, 2016

Teaching Practices

Through the time that we have been in South Africa, the team has taken different classes and participated in discussions with professors about culture and education.

During our last meeting, we sat down with an education professor with a specialty in science and have worked in New Jersey and South Africa.

He was speaking about how we have to stop teaching science and math, and we need to start teaching students how to think. I woke up a little. I pointed out that in America, too many teachers are made to worry about their test scores and as a result, teach students how to take a test.

My first year teaching was spent worried about the state test and how my students would score. I cried too much that year. My dreams of what teaching was supposed to be were temporarily crushed. I decided that I would no longer talk about the end of year test, until the end of the year.

I’ve spent every year since focused on teaching my students how to talk about their learning, how to form opinions, how to write about their thoughts. I teach how to manipulate numbers and come to solutions on their own, rather than using the way that I depend on.

I love Common Core.  

My friend, Florence and I talk about how we love that Common Core builds from one year to the next. I love that it thinks about the different learners in our classrooms and shows us how to approach a problem, rather than teach the answer.

Today lit my “beginning of the school year” fire!

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