fail

Showing 32 posts tagged fail

Instead of Framing ‘Failure’ As a Positive, Why Not Just Use Positive Words?
image via flickr:CC | Mijos

In recent months, authors, school districts, and big thinkers have promoted failure as a valuable experience for young people, specifically students. The premise behind this argument could be valuable, as evidence exists showing students do best when they have space to wrestle and struggle when engaged in trial and error, design-based or problem-based learning. These research-defined terms and approaches have a long and successful history in educational practice and outcomes. 
But if that’s the case, why are we pushing the use of such a loaded work like failure in our societal discourse on education? What does using a negative term such as failure as a way of indicating positive traits do to students and schools?

High-res

Instead of Framing ‘Failure’ As a Positive, Why Not Just Use Positive Words?

image via flickr:CC | Mijos

In recent months, authors, school districts, and big thinkers have promoted failure as a valuable experience for young people, specifically students. The premise behind this argument could be valuable, as evidence exists showing students do best when they have space to wrestle and struggle when engaged in trial and error, design-based or problem-based learning. These research-defined terms and approaches have a long and successful history in educational practice and outcomes.

But if that’s the case, why are we pushing the use of such a loaded work like failure in our societal discourse on education? What does using a negative term such as failure as a way of indicating positive traits do to students and schools?


Teaching Students to Embrace Mistakes

To help your students rethink mistakes, help them be specific about their errors. Knowing that answer #3 is wrong doesn’t mean much. Knowing that they didn’t understand mitosis gives them a mandate for getting better. Often, when we go through tests with students, the mistakes they perceive as dire are either careless errors or a single concept applied incorrectly on several questions. Either way, the “fix” is usually smaller than how big the problem feels.

Teaching Students to Embrace Mistakes

To help your students rethink mistakes, help them be specific about their errors. Knowing that answer #3 is wrong doesn’t mean much. Knowing that they didn’t understand mitosis gives them a mandate for getting better. Often, when we go through tests with students, the mistakes they perceive as dire are either careless errors or a single concept applied incorrectly on several questions. Either way, the “fix” is usually smaller than how big the problem feels.

Problems with new ratings of teachers colleges, point by point

Giving Good Praise to Girls: What Messages Stick

Parents have few options when moving kids from failing public schools

Watson’s experience points to a key failure in New Orleans’ lauded landscape of choice-based educational reform: In a city where parental options abound, how many of the choices are reputable ones?
“Fundamentally, the letter of the law is that if they’re in a failing school, then parents ought to be given the option of a better school for their child,” said Adam Emerson, director of the Program on Parental Choice for the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a Washington, D.C., education think tank. “If parents are getting options that aren’t doing any better than what their child is currently in right now, that’s a problem.”

photo via flickr:CC | John Edwards 2008

Parents have few options when moving kids from failing public schools

Watson’s experience points to a key failure in New Orleans’ lauded landscape of choice-based educational reform: In a city where parental options abound, how many of the choices are reputable ones?

“Fundamentally, the letter of the law is that if they’re in a failing school, then parents ought to be given the option of a better school for their child,” said Adam Emerson, director of the Program on Parental Choice for the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a Washington, D.C., education think tank. “If parents are getting options that aren’t doing any better than what their child is currently in right now, that’s a problem.”

photo via flickr:CC | John Edwards 2008

Where MOOCs Miss the Mark: The Student-Teacher Relationship

 For students who know what they want and when they want it in terms of online content, MOOCs are a fabulous new option to build and construct personalized learning ecosystems. 
 Unfortunately, for many learners, MOOCs lack the possibility of mentorship and close guidance that comes through the building of a meaningful relationship between student and teacher.

Where MOOCs Miss the Mark: The Student-Teacher Relationship

For students who know what they want and when they want it in terms of online content, MOOCs are a fabulous new option to build and construct personalized learning ecosystems.

Unfortunately, for many learners, MOOCs lack the possibility of mentorship and close guidance that comes through the building of a meaningful relationship between student and teacher.

theatlantic suggests:

Why Parents Need to Let Their Children Fail

You see, teachers don’t just teach reading, writing, and arithmetic. We teach responsibility, organization, manners, restraint, and foresight. These skills may not get assessed on standardized testing, but as children plot their journey into adulthood, they are, by far, the most important life skills I teach.
I’m not suggesting that parents place blind trust in their children’s teachers; I would never do such a thing myself. But children make mistakes, and when they do, it’s vital that parents remember that the educational benefits of consequences are a gift, not a dereliction of duty. Year after year, my “best” students — the ones who are happiest and successful in their lives — are the students who were allowed to fail, held responsible for missteps, and challenged to be the best people they could be in the face of their mistakes.
Read more. [Images: Shutterstock]

High-res

theatlantic suggests:

Why Parents Need to Let Their Children Fail

You see, teachers don’t just teach reading, writing, and arithmetic. We teach responsibility, organization, manners, restraint, and foresight. These skills may not get assessed on standardized testing, but as children plot their journey into adulthood, they are, by far, the most important life skills I teach.

I’m not suggesting that parents place blind trust in their children’s teachers; I would never do such a thing myself. But children make mistakes, and when they do, it’s vital that parents remember that the educational benefits of consequences are a gift, not a dereliction of duty. Year after year, my “best” students — the ones who are happiest and successful in their lives — are the students who were allowed to fail, held responsible for missteps, and challenged to be the best people they could be in the face of their mistakes.

Read more. [Images: Shutterstock]

Understanding the Gates Foundation’s Measuring Effective Teachers Project

So, rather than having “figured out what makes a good teacher” the Gates Foundation has learned very little in this project about effective teaching practices.  The project was an expensive flop.  Let’s not compound the error by adopting this expensive flop as the basis for centrally imposed, mechanistic teacher evaluation systems nationwide.

photo via flickr:CC | Lester Public Library

Understanding the Gates Foundation’s Measuring Effective Teachers Project

So, rather than having “figured out what makes a good teacher” the Gates Foundation has learned very little in this project about effective teaching practices.  The project was an expensive flop.  Let’s not compound the error by adopting this expensive flop as the basis for centrally imposed, mechanistic teacher evaluation systems nationwide.

photo via flickr:CC | Lester Public Library