The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

I just had a conversation with a teacher in which the fundamental question that has to be asked and answered is: How do students engage in relevant learning experiences? We already know the answer.

Compulsory learning does nothing for the student. In fact, it demeans the entire goal of learning and the intrinsic motivation to do so. Going through my preservice teaching classes, much discussion revolved around intrinsic vs. extrinsic motivation to learn. Extrinsic, from my point of view, learning is achieved when I give a student a reward - candy, bookmark, computer time. Intrinsic motivation is learning because the student is compelled to do so. To compel a student to learn means the learning experience is not contrived.

Contrived learning is the lesson plan that structures every step of what to learn and how to learn it. The teacher, knowing the easy path is giving the student everything they need to learn, writes down the steps to be followed. Students know they are not really learning. As I frequently reiterate to myself, learning is messy. At times there is a straight forward process to learning though, more often than not, there is no process, no steps to follow, and certainly no plan.

Real world learning is the only way we will get students to remain engaged but this means a shift in teaching. The shift is from teacher centered to student centered. Many claim to be student centered in planning, teaching, and assessing, but the reality is that we, as teachers, do what is easiest. It is easy to lecture, use the teacher manual, use online textbook resources, and download content. However, we already know that the degree to which the content is learned is much deeper than traditional teaching models. The same mantra is repeated in spite of this and that is there is too much content to cover and little time to teach all of it. We cannot call downloading of content teaching. We can call it a speech with information but no student is really engaged as a teacher speaks to class for an entire period. Teaching would involve inquiry by asking important questions to solve real life problems today, and not just creating the presentation that show regurgitated content.

We already know the answer to high quality teaching, it is transforming ourselves to do it.

Views: 707

Comment

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

Join The Educator's PLN

About

Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Rob Mancabelli updated their profile
13 hours ago
Profile IconCorey Mikula, Silvia Watson, Dineo Nkawane and 13 more joined The Educator's PLN
Thursday
Silvia Watson posted a blog post

Top Fitness Tips That Will Improve Your Horse Riding Skills

Horse riding is a very peaceful pass-time, horseback riding can provide a way by which you can train a remarkable animal and also explore sceneries around you, or become engaged in various competitions, races, and shows. You can be a novice or even a lifetime horse-rider, but in this article, you will learn some tips which are guaranteed to make your riding more enjoyable.Yoga: Yoga can help you because relaxes your body and enables you to lengthen and also loosen your muscles. For horseback…See More
Thursday
Alexandra Grayson posted a blog post

Goodyear STEM Career Day builds on pivotal, national education priorities

Today’s modern world demands minds able to think deeply and well, so the capacity of America’s learners in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) areas is critical. The US Department of Education has responded with programs designed to…See More
Thursday
Gary Newman commented on Marianna Velma's blog post 9 Famous Entrepreneurs Who Think That College Is Your Worst Enemy
"You could try to write paper online about this infographic."
Thursday
Eileen Lennon posted a blog post

I finally understand what Parent Teacher Conferences are all about

I have parents coming into my classroom today asking how their child is doing in my class. They only have a 95, how can they get a higher grade?Really?This happens over and over again. I wonder why they're here. I don't think it's to make themselves feel better about how great their child is doing in school. I also don't think that they are very worried about the 95 not being a 98. I believe it's to show their child that they are fully invested in their education.Parents who show up to Parent…See More
Nov 30
P updated their profile
Nov 30
Steven Secord updated their profile
Nov 29

Awards And Nominations

© 2017   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service