Saturday, January 8, 2011

About Reflection

Thoreau says, "It is as hard to see one's self as to look backwards without turning around."

As teachers, we need to look back at our instructional strategies and think about what worked and what didn't work. For me, part of that process involves the written word. It is necessary to write it out. The act of writing and re-reading what I write is integral to the process of active reflection.

As I start the new semester -- I think about what could be improved from last semester in my practice teaching seminar. I think that I could formally model the action learning project by taking students through the question about how people learn and designing a way that they can actively collaborate to find answers to how people learn. It seems like they get all the way through the teacher education program and have not given much thought to the question of how people learn. Maybe they have given thought to it, though. Could be they know more than I think they do? We'll see.

For now, it seems like I should implement a two-stage process:
1. Formulate an essential question that is relevant to learners, does not have a yes or no answer, and requires students to engage in research to find the answer.
2. Design a collaborative student project that demonstrates student mastery of standards and objectives.

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