Monday, April 13, 2015

We Have to Stop Pretending---Beth's Take

CC license Jsnape

This morning I came across a post from Scott McLeod. In this post called We Have to Stop Pretending Scott lists five things we have to stop pretending.

Here is my take. We need to stop pretending......

  • that we are communicating well. 
  • that textbooks are the curriculum. 
  • that what we did 30, 15, or even 5 years ago is good enough to teach students the skills they need to survive in the world they live in. 
  • that technology is a distraction. 
  • there is nothing wrong with remaining isolated. 

I'm tagging Shaelynn Farnsworth, Mickie Mueller, Amanda Dykes, Kristina Peters, and Tina Photakis.

What about you? What are five things you think we need to stop pretending? If you write a post please tag with #makeschoolsdifferent


  1. One thing that I've been thinking about is connected with number two: texts books and curriculum. Then throw in reading programs and scripted math programs. Teachers are experts, when will schools embrace their expertise? Teachers are professionals, but not treated as such. I know it is a huge issue, but with technology tools we should tap into that expertise.

  2. Well stated (as usual), Beth. That last bullet really speaks to me as a connected educator. Still baffles me that so many of our peers fail to see the power of global communities of practice... Thanks for participating!

  3. Jamey- I was so fortunate to work for 9 years in a district where the philosophy was to let teachers teach and allow them the freedom to determine what resources and topics they wanted to address in their classes. As long as what I was doing fit into the Nebraska Social Studies standards I was good to go. I realize this is much easier said than done and that there definitely needs to be some standardization across classes, but there is plenty of room in most schools to provide teachers with much more academic freedom than they are afforded.

    Scott- I cannot imagine being an educator in 2015 and not having a network of people to learn from. I stole an idea from Bob Dillon that I have started using when I work with teachers. I ask them to name ten people that they learn from and share ideas with on a regular basis that are not in our district. Not one person can name more than one or two which is frightening. We are responsible for our own learning and making sure we are prepared to teach the students who are sitting in our classes. If we don't know where to go to learn and if we aren't connected to other educators who can help us transform our practices then that learning is not taking place. I'm with you---I'm baffled as to why some educators choose to remain isolated.

    1. Beth,
      Solid job on the list. I'd like to also borrow Bob Dillon's idea via you and ask my teachers about the ten people they learn from. But I have a question for you-- where does the conversation go after teachers realize they can't name ten people? Do they feel bad (not that they shouldn't)? Do they even care? I'm curious because I love the idea but I need to make sure it goes in a positive direction, so I'm wondering how you structure the conversation after. I don't want my teachers to feel like I'm calling them out and shaming them... small district... gotta do what's good for business... ya know?

  4. here's a link to my addition!