Oct
15

Learning Well

Last spring I saw a tweet about a collaborative venture called “Teaching Well” that was part of the work Darren Kuropatwa (@dkuropatwa) was doing with facilitating PLP work. Basically the idea was that one person started a metaphor/contrast about teaching and the other person finished it. There were some amazing contrasts and pairs of slides that not only showed the creativity of the teachers involved but also the philosophies and thoughts they have about teaching. I wasn’t officially part of the PLP, but Darren let me submit a slide anyway. (See the idea with many links explained here by Tania Sheko.)

Here’s mine.

Teachingwell

It clearly shows I believe teachers have to be learners, and in rereading it, I think that it pretty much encompasses all that I believe about teaching.

Teachers can teach shallowly, to simply pass the tests or we can teach for deep understanding that allows students to ask new questions and thirst for more; we can do it alone or we can collaborate and share with our colleagues; we can do it because we want to make a difference, we want to help kids, we relish the AH-HA moments in our students, we enjoy deep conversations, we like the challenge of crafting questions that scaffold students to new understandings  or we can do it in a way that simply meets the requirements of the job to bring home the paycheck; as we teach, we see knowledge as simply a gurgling up, a beginning that leads to more questions, perhaps different questions and deeper learning as we make connections, synthesize, analyze and use that knowledge to create.

So many of us lament, day after day, that we have no time to talk to our colleagues, that we have no time for reflection, no time to build the lessons we have in our minds and hearts that go well beyond the state standards to the passions we have in our field.  Milton Ramirez (@tonnet) recently responded to another of my blog posts, saying, “Twitter really changed our way of connecting to educators and other professionals. I can not foresee other applications that can bring together so many interesting people at once.” While I’m glad to hear another person say Twitter is as powerful for them as it is for me, I think we have to go beyond 140 characters and commit to having deep conversations, critical questioning and more co-creations that tap into the incredible brainpower of the educators  sharing in the Twitter stream.

We not only have to share our strategies, our finds, our projects, and our methods of using the web with our students as we talk about teaching well, but we also have to have the conversations about how our students LEARN WELL. Let’s challenge ourselves to change the conversation from centering on our teaching to our students’ LEARNING WELL.

I’m wondering what my slide would look like if I borrowed Darren’s idea and changed the phrase to “Learning Well.“  Interested in thinking about what YOUR slide would look like? Want to play?

Learning Well

http://docs.google.com/present/edit?id=0AS2gSADuNRdRZGhkZm1rajNfMWNqcmc5c2Ri&hl=en

Please be sure to cite your source on the last slide.


http://www.unicef.org.uk/tz/resources/resource_item.asp?id=107


5 Responses to “Learning Well”

  1.   Darren Kuropatwa Says:

    I’m am so down with this! Love what you’re doing. Gotta get some sleep tonight, also want to give it a little think but I’ll be back.

    Thanks for this Paula!

  2.   Paula White Says:

    Darren,
    I’m thrilled people have chosen to join in and share their thinking. Thanks for the experience last spring and for being the springboard to this post. I so appreciate your sharing what your students are doing and love hearing YOUR stories, as I get ideas each time I listen to your presentations–whether in person OR online. Can’t wait to see how this all turns out!

    Thanks for playing.

    Paula

  3.   Tracy Rosen Says:

    I love this idea. I just may have to use it with my students. In fact, I may have them give me some data and use ‘Teaching well’ as the theme. I’d love to see what they have to say about what ‘teaching well’ looks like.

  4.   self storage Says:

    Thanks for posting this, lifted my day.

  5.   Bernard Mattheson Says:

    Thanks for sharing such useful information. I always enjoy reading your blog.

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