Do we live up to our own expectations?
After reading The Coming of Age article Peter Ford said something so simple that made me more irritated with "stuck in the past" teachers. He said "practice what we preach", how many times have we (adults in general) said this? Well, as teachers we ask students to learn something new everyday, retain it, apply it and remember it for all the classes to follow. On the other hand, many teachers teach the same static content - how much is history going to change? or mathematics? Science theories? Grammar? If the content is rarely changing - why be resisitant to new ways of teaching it? Atleast, I have come across many teachers resistant to change their teaching methods. I mean, how long have we been looking at teaching methods and there effectiveness? I don't think it has been that long, although I have not been able to find the supporting material for this (I remember it from my undergrad).
So I digress, as adults, people, teachers we need to model to the youth how to problem solve by doing ourselves. I am suggesting that we need to learn new ways to teach the static material - or look into how that static material is changing and being affected by technology.
For example, I tried something in my class that I had never done before - so I told the students that and we read the directions together and our first try did not work, we failed, we reflected and tried again - we were successful! Many teachers are affraid to fail in from of the students, I found they saw me as human and able to make mistakes. I am hoping they see that making mistakes is just a way of learning - if you take advantage of the learning moment.