Thursday, October 27, 2022

If the student hasn't learned, the teacher hasn't taught.

Write a caption which summarizes what the cartoon above tells us about teaching. 

One of ways we begin teacher training workshops is with the cartoon and caption-writing exercise above. Over the years we've heard many answers, but most come down to some variation of, "if the student hasn't learned, the teacher hasn't taught". It's clear that the 'teacher' (the policeman) is sharing a lot of information, but the 'student''s understanding is jumbled. Will the pedestrian actually make it to his destination? Will the student retain the learning? 

What's needed is for the teacher to break down the learning into steps, and to include formative assessments to be sure that the student understands and can recall what's being taught. Maybe some map work would be in order? 

As teachers we need to always remember that it's not what we said in class that matters, but what students learned. 

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Implementing Teaching Labs

To be as impactful as possible, teacher training should be as realistic as possible. This can be difficult in a school situation, as we don't have live students in teacher meetings with which to practice methods or approaches. That would be an interesting exercise, but probably not often practical. 

Schools can use role-plays and analysis of video, or, even better, live lessons with teachers as the 'class' to make the situations more realistic.

Having teachers engage in teaching, even in a short format, will require then to think carefully through the steps of the 'lesson', and the following time for critique and analysis gives  valuable feedback to both the teacher and the participants and observers. 

Implementing Teaching Labs