Hello AED 541,
So often teachers have goals and exercises for their students that are never carried out. Why? Because the education system pressures teachers and administrators to “teach to the exam,” causing them to lack time for additional work, insight and activities. As the article in ch. 10’s “Implications for Teaching” states: “U.S. education has minimized the role of planning and design in teaching . . . and the general lack of time reserved for planning . . . make it difficult for educators to engage in substantive curricular planning and design work” (158). Despite the the time and convenience deficit, ch. 10 provides various ways for approaching lessons in interesting, original methods. Chapter 10 makes the discouraged teacher realize that hope and possibility have not faded entirely.
I will provide two examples from the article that I liked in particular:
I. Visual Representation (Web or Concept Map)
Computers and the internet are at their most popular state nowadays. Why not allow the students to use their interests in technology to inform you (and each other) of what they have learned and understand? Creating a web, concept map or flow chart is a touching upon multiple skills and strategies. Students are using creativity, both artistically and mathematically. The students will be practicing their vocabulary, grammar and spelling as they create such sites, maps, etc. Then, the students will present their work, thus practicing the skill of public speaking, and reviewing for themselves and their classmates what they have learned.
II. Index Cards
A brief mention at the end of the article, but necessary for the teacher’s understanding of her students’ abilities and knowledge. By distributing index cards to the class and having them write
“What worked . . .” and “What didn’t work . . .” in the past weeks’ lessons, the teacher gains a better idea of what needs more focusing on and where he/she is succeeding (176). Comfort, openness and flexibility must be clear and evident for students to answer the questions honestly and with care.
Lastly, I am having trouble understanding the importance of The Six Facets of Understanding, Enhanced chart on p. 169. in comparison to other demonstrations of understanding. Perhaps we can discuss this in class? I would just like to look further into its significance.