This is harder than you might think, but after a little self-reflection, what one word will you select to guide you this school year?
I selected time for my word. I'm going to focus on working smarter not longer. I watch my grandchildren growing up and I don't want to miss my special times with them. I watched my sister lose her husband this year and I don't want to short my time with family.
Put your word in writing here. Feel free to come back during the school year and tell us any personal stories on how this is working for you.
What one word will you select to guide you this school year?
It is hard to do one word, but I'm going to give you a hyphenated word: Student-centered.
I truly believe that if your classroom is run in a student-centered philosophy, then students will take responsibility for their own learning and share that learning with others.
An example of this happened yesterday in one of my 8th grade computer classes. I taught a concept on the overhead about a Word document. One student didn't get it or wasn't listening. It was to save a document to the desktop and then retrieve the document and change it; again saving it to the desktop. I gave him a one-on-one tutoring lesson, and I asked him to completely understand because he would be asked to assist other students with their work on the same concept. He agreed. Five minutes later a student asked the same question. I asked Ethan to assist the student, and he did. Five minutes later another student asked the same question. Now I had David give the individual instructions, and he assisted the student with completing the task.
Students were collaborating/communicating with other students and learning, and the bonus is their self-esteem when sky high! Teachers should get away from doing it the old fashion way and involve the students.
That's my two-cents
I like the idea of students learning from hands-on engagement and seeing learning related to real-world problems. Problem/project-based approaches allows students to use their critical thinking skills to find solutions as opposed to repeating facts from lectures. It also shows students that there are multiple ways to arrive at a conclusion and several solutions to the same problem.