Our school is closed today — but because I work for the SCHURCH (school & church), I was on campus and working on all the catch-up work I can do when pretty much no one is on campus.
As I was wandering over to a classroom on our secondary campus, I saw a light on in one of the classrooms and sauntered over to investigate — and went in to say hi to one of our brand new teachers. (working on her day off — yep, she is a first year teacher)
We chatted a bit — and then, we started talking about students, their use of tech, their misunderstanding and misconstruing of tech, our assumptions of their use and knowledge, and then we wandered back through math, and algorithms, and filter bubbles, and “if you can google it why does it have to be on the test?” And just a lot of good chat as we were weaving through a totally spontaneous conversation where two friends are sharing ideas and learning from each other.
I encouraged her to figure out ways to put her students into groups — and shared with her the blog post written by (I cannot remember) who had his/her students use the cell-phone to find a friend to help them answer a math problem and 1 student texted his dad in Iraq (?) and another student texted his friend in the class next door (where cell phones were not allowed.) — any help finding this blog post is appreciated.
We then talked about our governor and his talk about bringing in “winter” gas and also how her mom was able to save money when she had tile put in because she figured out the contractor had overcharged her for tiles she did not need based on square footage, and how these would be great conversations to have with students…… to make math more meaningful, interesting, and real.
And then she said “It is not a word problem, it is a LIFE problem” and I gasped out loud and said “ohmigosh, I have to write about this.”
What if …
- We approached EVERY day and EVERY student in EVERY SUBJECT with the new thought pattern of “you don’t need to know this for the test — you need to know this for LIFE.”
- We stop giving the silly questions and start discussing the smart answers?
- We stop wasting their time with paperwork to fill an 8 to 3 day…and start filling their time with things we know they will need to know (because we know that there are things they DO need to know) and also encourage them to discover the things they WANT to know?
- We started tomorrow with closed books and took the time to open minds?
I am so glad I wandered down to the secondary class and walked into a classroom — I love chance encounters that make me think harder…..push my comfortableness to a an uncomfortable place…..and put a bounce in my step for new possibilities with our students.
Just my thoughts today