9 Elephants

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Photo CC-Sue Barrera

The article “9 Elephants in the (Class)Room that should “Unsettle” Us” is an article that all educators should read and really take notes from. It is great that Will Richardson told us readers to acknowledge the 9 elephants in the classroom. The biggest elephants I pick would be the first two.

We know that most of our students will forget most of the content they “learn” in school.

This elephant is really important because everyone knows this is true. Whenever I tell someone that I’m going to be a secondary math teacher someday, they always says “That’s awesome! I was never good at math and I gave it all back to my teachers.” I want to acknowledge this elephant and will keep people’s comment in mind every day while teaching and have that be a challenge. When I teach, I don’t want to teach just because the curriculum tells me to. I want to teach because I am passionate about what I am teaching and my students. I want my students to learn and remember what they learned in my classroom. I know sometimes I am even like that where I don’t remember what I’ve learned from my past classes but I don’t want that to be my students.

We know that most of our students are bored and disengaged in school.

This elephant is just as big because I know how it feels to be bored and disengaged in school. That is the top place students loses interest in being at school. I remember when I was in middle or high school, I would rather be sick and stay home than going to school. I don’t want my students to be like that in my classroom, I want my students to be excited every time they walk in my classroom door and happy when they leave. I know math is going to be the subject everyone will dread taking, but I am challenging myself to change that mindset for my future students. I hope to make math fun and useful in my student’s lives. I’ve had pretty amazing math teachers in middle school and high school years just because I still struggled with English at that time. They’ve all put extra times to help me out and that’s what inspired me to be a math teacher just like them. I’ve had a pretty good examples of good and bad teachers, I hope someday to be a good teacher.

I think it’s more important that children actually learn than how much they appear to be learning on tests. I am guilty of memorizing information just to pass tests and forget about them after a few months. It hits me really hard in the face when I come back during the summer and have to build up more knowledge based on what I’ve learned from the past. So it’s definitely more important that children actually learn than how much they appear to be learning on tests. It’s harder to forget when the information is actually learned rather than memorized.

 

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Innovation that excites

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Photo CC-Dan Mason

This semester has been one of the craziest semester for me in college. I currently have two jobs in which I work about 40-45 hours total a week and being a full time student. Being a math major and working two jobs, it has been hard to be an innovative learner and thinker. I try really hard to be an innovative learner and thinker especially when I am learning on how to be an educator someday. Through this semester I have learn that I can do a lot more things than I thought I could. I challenged myself to work 40-45 hours a week and go to school at the same time, and I never thought I could pull it through(Don’t get me wrong, I am kind of dead right now and ready for break). Sometimes it’s hard to be an innovative learner or thinker when we’re so distracted by what the world says and does.

To me innovation in learning looks like being an adventurous. You go out and try new things, while doing that you learn in ways you didn’t even know you could. You challenge yourself with whatever comes your way. Eventually you will find something that you like to do (your way of learning). Being an adventurous, you will continue trying different things. What I’ve unlearned this semester is the idea that every student needs to learn the same content when really what they need to learn is how to self-direct their own learning. I really like getting to chose what I learn and when I learn from this class. I did online school for the last year and a half of my high school year and have been taking online classes since my freshman year of college. I like to be able to schedule a time to do my class work and do it at my pace. I know it’s hard to do that with classroom setting when students are schedule an hour block or 45 minute blocks. Something that I would like to unlearn someday from “The Unlearning curve” article is the idea that we can teach our students to be literate in this world by continually blocking and filtering access to the sites and experiences they need our help to navigate. I feel like I’d have a hard time to let students have all access to sites online and things like that.

In “The mindset of innovation” Couros said “I question thinking, challenge ideas, and do not accept “this is the way we have always done it” as an acceptable answer for our students or myself.” This quotation really speaks to the point because as an innovator thinker or learner that is what we need to do. We can’t accept “this is the way we have always done it” for an answer. Another quotation from Couros “I listen and learn from different perspectives, because I know we are much better together than we could ever be alone. I can learn from anyone and any situation.” I like to observe and take notes from different professors because I am learning from them to how to be a good role model someday and how to challenge myself to be better each day.