I tell my students about the scaffolds I have in place and why I try to put things in an order in the first place. They ask lots of questions about why we’re doing this or that, and I get to tell them about their brains getting new information by playing around with it in different dimensions - with their bodies, their writing, their words, etc. - in a social environment. That’s why we do particular warm ups when we’re trying to achieve certain goals during a lesson, and why the warm ups change and evolve as our goals get more challenging.
We also talk about how learning is like lifting weights (you don’t just go to the gym and stare at the weights! you have to lift them and sweat and be sore and want to give up and get thru it to get swol!) I love my job - theatre is a wonderful discipline to experiment with growth mindset because of its historic recognition as a craft and lifelong practice.
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Thanks, hithertokt! =)
On my door, I put the statement, “In this classroom, we have a growth mindset.” Around it are growth mindset types of statements like “We are not afraid to try” and “It’s okay to make mistakes.”
praising effort rather than ability is the first thing I thought of
We chart our data on individual data trackers, set goals and action steps, and review our goals. We do this as a class as well. I emphasize at the beginning when we first track, that I DO NOT CARE where they are starting out. I want to see them learn. They get it. They have ownership over it. They buy in. Especially kids who are right on the line between below basic and basic or basic and proficient.
Experienced teachers say that the key is to stress-management is to be prepared, yet flexible as well as find a good work-life balance that works for you. Implementing stress-management techniques will not only make you happier and healthier, it will also make you a more effective teacher. The 10 Stress-Management Techniques for Teachers Infographic gives some advice on stress-management provided by experienced teachers.
In a blended learning environment, the need to plan and develop thoughtful units of instruction has emerged as one of the most critical factors in creating a successful instructional program.
When creating units of instruction, focus on larger themes and big-picture concepts. Too much emphasis on small skills and minutiae will have you feeling like you are drowning in apps, digital content, and 25 individual student learning paths and lesson plans. Reflect on your blended learning philosophy and evaluate its presence in your unit design. If you find you’re not using the tool in the manner that you initially intended, make adjustments.
image via flickr:CC | queensu
Whole class feedback … you know, when the teacher returns a set of papers or exams and talks to the entire class about its performance, or the debriefing part of an activity where the teacher comments on how students completed the task. I don’t believe I have ever seen anything written about this feedback mechanism, even though I think most of us use it pretty regularly. Is it a good way to provide feedback? Do students pay any attention to feedback delivered in this way? When is whole class feedback most effective? After an exam? During group projects? Is it better to provide the feedback verbally or post it online? Should students be involved in this discussion of how well the class did or didn’t do?
Social media can turn an awkward school discussion into an addictive debate.
- What do you see as your child’s greatest strengths or skills? Tell me about a time when you saw your child demonstrating these skills.
- Next June, what do you hope your child says about his/her experience in school this year? What’s the story you hope he/she would tell?
- What was your experience like in this grade? How do you remember that year of school?
- What are your fears or concerns about your child in this year of school?
- How and when would you like me to be in touch with you this year? What do you hope I’d communicate with you about?
- Is there anything else you can tell me about your child that you think would help me support his/her learning?
- Is there a question you hope I’ll ask you about your child?
image via flickr:CC | Innovation_School