published by David Wees on Sun, 01/23/2011 - 20:41
Our current school system teaches students who to be obedient instead of independent. Almost every time our students show even the slightest deviation from the path schools set, we beat them back into line using our bludgeons made of consequences, grades, and self-esteem. I've been thinking about this a lot since reading John Taylor Gatto's essay, The Six-Lesson School teacherso I'm sure that many of the thoughts below are reflected in his essay.
published by David Wees on Fri, 01/21/2011 - 18:37
I just conducted a very unscientific poll. I sent out a link on Twitter only and asked people who happened to be around how many hours they worked. It's not rigorous. However, in the limited sample group I have of 85 (update actually 132) educators on Twitter, here are the resultsas a CSV file.
published by David Wees on Thu, 01/20/2011 - 20:55
Every elementary school classroom should have about $20 in change. Not fake money printed on a piece of paper, but real money. Yes, some of it will go missing over time, and you might need to lock it up depending on your community, but honestly it's worth the risk. It's only $20.
published by David Wees on Wed, 01/19/2011 - 12:58
I read an article on the Principal's blog by Mel Riddile talking about the changes the AP is implementing and how these changes will make it more like the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. He asks a teacher who has been fortunate enough to teach both programs for a long time.
published by David Wees on Tue, 01/18/2011 - 19:34
A problem with education is that we have too many "best practices" and not enough innovation. Once you establish a procedure as a best practice there's no room for argument about whether or not it works. We should call it a "current practice" instead. Now we have the freedom to explore this practice and confirm whether or not it is actually working, and find new innovations in education.
published by David Wees on Mon, 01/17/2011 - 23:20
Let's suppose the picture below represents the possible states schools can be in, with the peaks being "good" places to be and the valleys being bad places to be. We don't really know yet what variables we are even representing with this picture, in fact it is likely that the picture itself would be better represented in 20 or 30 dimensions, as there a huge number of factors which affect how successful schools are.
published by David Wees on Mon, 01/17/2011 - 12:33
I got owned by one of my students today in math class which doesn't happen terribly often to me. Here's the situation, see if you can tell whose solution is really a better way to approach this problem.