Again, to reiterate, I am an In-Class-Support high school math teacher. As an ICS teacher, I am, for better or worse, subject to the class management habits of the teachers with whom I work.
Each of the teachers I work with opens her class with a Warm-up, Do Now, or whatever term you choose. On more days than not, the students receive their worksheet upon their arrival to class. Each teacher verbally expresses her desire to have the students complete this opening exercise within the first 5-10 minutes of class while housekeeping items are dealt with. Sounds reasonable enough, no?
And this is what I don’t understand: Why do these same teachers then engage students near their desk in a conversation about anything from the change in lunchroom duties, to their plans for the weekend, or the students’ plans for the weekend after just instructing them to complete their Warm-up?
The class slowly erupts into many side conversations, the warm-up isn’t completed by the students, notes are not accessed, prior knowledge is not activated, and the students merely copy down the work the teacher dutifully explains as she questions and leads them through the answers, using the Elmo to display this work on the front whiteboard.
And we want to know why we don’t have student driven learning?
I may have mentioned that I am taking courses toward a Technology Certificate. In one of our readings about the challenges facing distance learners is that… of all things… most adults went to school where they were passive receivers of information… Go Figure!!! The article I reference was written in 2000-ish… One might assume that things have changed. [I will add the reference to this as soon as I get back to my desk at home.]
I am here to tell you they have not… and so it goes… until the pedagogy expected at any level begins with the expectation that the teacher will NOT be the ‘sage-on-the-stage’, we will continue to have passive receivers of learning.
Can we have a call for leaders instead of managers?