Re: What are we 'teaching' ?
    answer these inquiry questions

    I am considered a much requested master teacher. I find these
    posts to be a sad indication of the downfall of our profession.
    Of course, if one is to oversimplify the task of learning, the
    claim can always be made that providing a circumstance can
    facilitate a child learning. We can not compare a toddler
    learning to walk, which is developmentally a musclular task,
    with higher learning, and more sophisticated mental tasks.
    Simply put, we have many studies that clearly show that teacher-
    led, directive lessons produce students who outperform students
    in classrooms that feature inquiry based learning. Look up the
    wealth of studies that have proven through testing and
    measurement the amount of "learning" a student can accomplish in
    a class with a dynamic, teacher driven method. My students
    don't get into groups and learn from each other what they all
    don't know--get real. This is why private schools, which favor
    more traditional instruction, outperform the product of public
    schools. I am appalled to hear such faulty logic to defend
    methods that project the teacher as a useless ornament in a
    classroom where, supposedly, the students are floating around in
    groups learning from each other. Why not resign your position,
    and allow uncertified aids to prompt students to engage in such
    a fashion. You don't go to a tax accountant, a doctor, a golf
    pro for lessons only to hear that you learn by discovering the
    answers. Really? What a sad commentary on our schools today,
    and sorry for the students having to find their way in such an
    inefficient system. If a student learns this way successfully,
    in fact, they never needed such a "teacher" to begin with. Why
    contain them to the four walls of your classroom. Send them out
    in to the world where they can use inquiry learning and
    discovery to learn far more. You are merely holding them back.

    On 8/07/14, Valerie wrote:
    > I too, am not entirely sure with the purpose of you questions
    > and comments but I'm in total agreement with what you say and
    > love the quotes you used. I teach in Ontario, Canada, where
    > full-day Kindergarten is just in the final year of roll out.
    > Full Day Kindergarten is being adopted, in many boards, with
    > a strong play-based/inquiry based approach. I've heard the
    > term Reggio more times in the past 3 years than I've ever
    > heard in my life. We are being strongly encouraged to ease
    > away from our traditional 'teacher' role, and
    > become 'partners' in learning alongside our children. One
    > thing that I have noticed is the push to throw away any
    > programs that we had been using in the past (e.g., phonics
    > programs such as Jolly Phonics). We, as teachers, are
    > embedding learning in more authentic ways. We are abandoning
    > themes in favour of inquiry, which allows the children to ask
    > questions, do research, plan, collaborate with their peers
    > and be involved participants in the inquiry process. I love
    > it and find the children to be so very positive and motivated
    > towards learning. I am looking forward to a new school year
    > and to see where it takes us.
    > On 8/06/14, JAE wrote:
    >> Feedback please :)
    >> this is my view on 'teaching' as I don't believe we are
    >> there to attempt to teach children anything, but only there
    >> to provide opportunities in which they can learn at their
    >> own interest and readiness.
    >> What are we 'teaching' ?
    >> So you're a teacher?
    >> Ask yourself this, what do you teach?
    >> And your answer? Well maybe you would answer: I TEACH
    >> children, I TEACH adults, I TEACH Maths, I TEACH Physics, I
    >> TEACH English. . . well let me distinguish. . .
    >> How? How you do you TEACH these things?
    >> According to the dictionary to teach means "to impart
    >> knowledge to or instruct (someone) as to how to do
    >> something" Well I guess the next question would be who
    >> needs to be taught? Infants? Toddlers? Children? Parents?
    >> Adults? Sisters? Mothers? Fathers? Brothers? Who?
    >> Everyone needs someone to teach them right? Wrong.
    >> Why not? It's really quite simple. . .
    >> Children don't need to be taught to walk, but they need the
    >> space to take their first steps and the motivation.
    >> Children don't need to be taught to talk, but they need the
    >> opportunity to be involved in conversation
    >> Children don't need to be taught about the environment, but
    >> they need the opportunity to experience creation
    >> Children don't need to be taught to be polite, but they
    >> need the opportunity to experience positive communication
    >> So you see the difference, teaching vs. providing
    >> opportunity
    >> As humans we are born as a social being. Right from the get
    >> go you are surrounded by other humans and through each and
    >> every interaction your perception is adaptable. We rely on
    >> other people to shape our views and values of the world but
    >> not everybody is compatible, so how can you TEACH a room
    >> full people the same thing when it is generic and
    >> mechanical. Society dictates what everyone should know but
    >> if not everyone is the same and learns in different ways
    >> why are we put in box and told right from wrong and that we
    >> don't belong.
    >> When children are born their minds are open and free from
    >> the influence of society's pressure, so instead of telling
    >> and measure, let them explore and treasure.
    >> There is no need to fill a child's mind but instead provide
    >> opportunities in which they can open it.
    >> As Albert Einstein said "I never teach my pupils, I only
    >> attempt to provide conditions in which they can learn".
    >> It is really that simple. If we changed our thinking and
    >> took a step back instead of teaching we could provide the
    >> right track. Open their minds instead of filling with ABC,
    >> from there they can see the world with the full potential
    >> of what it could be.
    >> How would you like to learn? Would you appreciate being
    >> told what to think or having the opportunity and support to
    >> explore.
    >> Being told that sand is rough or smooth, cold or hot, wet
    >> or dry, or experiencing the fresh air with your feet in the
    >> sand and sun on your skin.
    >> So I ask you again, what do you TEACH?
    >> And at last I'll leave you with this
    >> Tell me and I'll forget, show me and I may remember,
    >> involve me and I'll understand.
    >> Hide not your talents, for use they were made, what is a
    >> sundial that is kept in the shade.
    >> Just think.