November 16, 2020-

Today marks forty-four years since I took on a fulltime classroom teaching position. My work, during those first two years, was nothing for a brag book. While I worked with few resources, the stint could have been greatly refined.

I have gradually acquired teaching skills, over the years. Perhaps the biggest, and most recent, was the skill of stressing process over content. I credit technology, with its ready-made storehouse of facts and figures, for our ability to put the stress on building capacity for the Thinking Process.

I actually am finding it delightful, in my last months of teaching, to observe how individual learners go about acquiring knowledge and, more fascinatingly, solving problems. The online educational game, Kahoots!, is an exemplary tool for such observations, as students are encouraged to state how they arrived at a given answer. I have met the gamut of thinkers, from Scientific Wild-Ass Guessers to meticulously intuitive sifters of evidence.

I look forward to many more observations of human solution-finders, both before and after my retreat from full-time work.

4 thoughts on “Refinement

  1. A friend of mine taught 5th grade in a rural school in the mountains. There were numerous kids with dyslexia, and it was fascinating to hear her talk of the ways her kids overcame that disability. For some, the solution was for her to write the words on the kids back with her fingers, for others there were many other solutions, but she was able to help all but her own daughter!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is why the US was so far ahead of other countries for so long – we taught students how to think instead of spoon feeding facts. The pendulum has swung and for years the policy was to “teach to the test” It is heartening to hear that students are once more being encouraged to think!

    Liked by 1 person

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