time or another every teacher feels bombarded by the mandates
of high-stakes testing and state standards. These can be discouraging
moments, and that is precisely when you need to remind yourself
of your purpose in the classroom. Following are some tips
that might help to keep you aware of your ultimate goal as
a teacher: helping students succeed.
with the end in mind - the end of the lesson, the end of
the unit, the end of the course. What do you want your students
to remember about what you have taught? How do you know
that they “get” it? How do you prepare them
to get to the final project? What are the steps along the
students access and use prior knowledge at the beginning
of each new unit of study. Let them know what they already
know. Use KWL charts, make charts of facts and myths about
a specific subject.
wait and think time for questions, comments and answers.
aside class time for summarizing and processing what is
learned while students are learning. The end of the period
may be too late for some students.
students in finding a style that works for their individual
learning style. Students can self-assess with the help of
check lists or rubrics. They also need to evaluate errors
and effort and make self-adjustments.
must be engaging and active to be meaningful. Students are
not spectators, you must help them be participants.
assessments that mirror the thinking/processing of information
that the standards require.
Create a community of learners. The classroom should be
an environment where students learn together.
students with respect and it will come back to you. Focus
on the learning process not on compliance and control.
on Why Didn’t I Learn This In College,
Paula Rutherford, ASK Publications, 2002.
If you have a question or suggestion,
don’t hesitate to e-mail
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