The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

Don't call me a good teacher, call me a good learner

In 8th grade Social Studies we recently finished out latest Project Based Learning endeavor. The driving question was should Native American be allowed to operate casinos on tribal land. The idea was that in answering the question students would address Manifest Destiny, westward expansion, Andrew Jackson, Trail of Tears, ideas of sovereignty, the India Removal Act, etc. They would also have to think about what this means in a contemporary fashion. Therefore, they studied court cases, compensation, and reservations. They pretended to be lawyers and presented me with either a defense of or case against Native American casinos. The presentations rocked and it was fun for all. Today was assessment today which means that they responded to two of four questions (One via a group and one individually).

How have Native Americans been treated over American History?
Who was Andrew Jackson and what were some important events during his presidency?
What is sovereignty and how does it relate to Native American Gaming?
Should people get compensation for past discrimination?


They could  do this via an imaginary twitter feed, a short essay, an illustration, or an imaginary facebook page. Basically, you name the way to answer, just make sure there is correct factual information and good analyzation. As they were doing this a student stopped me and said, "you are an awesome teacher...I wish other teachers were like you". Three things crossed my mind:

a) I have never heard a student say this during a "test" before!
b) I was extremely humbled
c) I realized I wasn't really a teacher for the last two weeks

So my response was, "Thank you, but I prefer the term an awesome co-learner." The poor girl was dumbfounded and I don't blame her. I then went on to ask her who was at the front of the classroom presenting last week. She said, "We were" and then I asked her who helped her understand the material and she responded, "lots of people, my group, and you." "Well then we all learned from one another right?" I went on to tell her all the things I learned from the class.

Here were just a few:
-One group gave a wonderful legal history of court cases between Native Americans and the United States. I was fascinated!
-One group described medical conditions of Native Americans and made an argument that it was a result of poor land and economic prospects we gave them
- One group retaught me how to use Google Forms
- One group even researched the term genocide and made an argument that the Trail of Tears was nothing less
Part of one group's presentation



Somebody asked me today why I love being a teacher and I promptly said because I get to learn everyday. It is fun when I see this in action.

Views: 150

Comment

You need to be a member of The Educator's PLN to add comments!

Join The Educator's PLN

Comment by Erika Podlovics on April 25, 2011 at 8:02pm
Incredible! It sounds like you have really inspired your kids. I also think that PBL is a really powerful way to teach and that more teachers should make use of it at earlier ages.

It sounds like your students appreciate the learning opportunity to you gave them, and vice versa :)

About

Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Christine Hinkley posted an event

OLC Innovate 2020 at Sheraton Grand Chicago

March 31, 2020 to April 3, 2020
Together we will build new foundations for stronger, better higher education environments. And because innovation scales best when ideas are shared, our work sessions will explore digital technologies and adapted teaching behaviors aimed at informing policy, inspiring leadership, and evolving practice at all levels impacting institutions, universities and colleges.CALL FOR PROPOSALS OPEN UNTIL SEPTEMBER 11, 2019. LEARN MORE:…See More
Monday
George Danke posted a discussion

Integration with The Latest Technology in Education Field

It is with certainty that we can say that the future of education is looking very bright. Today the kids are taught so many new innovations that we adults couldn't have imagined learning at school. They are also given exposure to more practical lessons. Integration with the latest technology and the accessibility to global platforms have made the industry take a whole new perspective towards imparting knowledge to students. Though the current generation is much advanced and keep up with the…See More
Jul 25
George Danke replied to Nanacy Lin's discussion Future Of Education
"Hi! I think that exactly AI will have a great impact on feature of Education. Technologies are rapidly developing and soon there will be tools with the help of which the learning process will be faster and more efficient."
Jul 24
George Danke replied to Shanshan Ma's discussion Personalized learning network and social media
"Hi! I agree that this platform it is a nice place for educators.  However, you can find people and education groups in such social medias as Facebook and Twitter which also can help you to find some useful information.  So, I can not…"
Jul 24
Profile IconSharon Boling, Jerry Hansen, Sara Maynerich and 40 more joined The Educator's PLN
Jul 23
Ruth Herman Wells posted an event

Seattle WA Teacher Behavior Management Professional Development Workshop at Marriot Courtyard South Center

April 23, 2020 at 9am to April 24, 2020 at 4pm
Got Problem Kids? Here's your Problem-Student Problem-Solver Workshop. You name the problems and this workshop delivers hundreds of immediate problem-stopping answers. You will leave with innovative, more effective strategies for school failure, truancy, dropping out, work refusal, violence, delinquency, bad attitudes, depression, and more. Online workshop, college credit and free clock hours also available. For more info go to our website,…See More
Jul 18
Deidra Campbell liked Thomas Whitby's blog post Parent Communication Isn’t What It Once Was.
Jul 6
Daisy Hastings posted a blog post

How and Why To Get Into National Honor Society

The National Honor Society (NHS) is an organization for the high-school students. It is dedicated to recognizing and appreciating the young ones for their excellent performance at educational establishments. Hence, those who satisfy the membership requirements laid down by the school’s chapter can apply for the NHS membership.How to get into National Honor Society?The first task is to figure out if your school consists of an NHS chapter. And, if it does…See More
Jun 24

© 2019   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service