Looking Back: Stop talking about classrooms that don’t work

July 24, 2011 at 9:27 am
filed under Classroom, Inspiration, Looking Back, Pedagogy, ShoutOuts, Teaching

As part of my Looking Back series, the sentiments I articulated in this post from August 21st, 2010 are still very alive for me. There are classrooms that work, that work very well. Click on the title below to go to the original post with its comments.

Here is an example of a ‘traditional’ classroom in Japan (scroll down to ‘Inspiration in a Japanese elementary school’). Can you imagine if these students did not have this place? What a shame that would be.

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Stop talking about classrooms that don’t work

This morning I read a thoughtful post about what ADD may or may not be. Despite the timeliness and depth of thought present in the article, I was stricken by one paragraph about the perils of classrooms on our children. How our young children today, so rife with creative potential, are doomed to a future of diagnosis and boredom because they will be subjected to school.

I was not only stricken but insulted.

Does all of the work that I and many of my colleagues have done over the past years have no bearing on the future of education? Do all of those teachers out there in schools all over the world who care about their children not count?

I feel we need to get beyond the system is broken kind of thinking and focus on what is working. We see what we look for and if we keep focusing on a broken system we will only succeed in creating more broken system.

Instead of creating a doomsday effect by telling ominous stories of the proliferation of ‘traditional’ classrooms that stifle creativity and connectivity, I prefer to point towards learning that does the opposite, learning that works and educators who ‘get it’.

George Couros
Michael Doyle
Lori Centerbar
Kevin Hodgson
Glenn Moses
Linda Clinton
Elona Hartjes
Darren Kuropatwa
Kelly Hines
Karen S.
Dea Conrad-Curry
Zac Chase
Angela Maiers
Chris Lehmann
Jose Vilson
MRW
Damian Bariexca
J. M. Holland

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You get the point. There are good educators who foster good learning in good classrooms in good schools. I keep this in mind as I work towards hope for the future within (and without) the walls of my own school.

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  1. Or-Tal Kiriati

    on July 24, 2011 at 10:15 am

    Hi, thanks for referring to my post. No, work of extra special educators does not go unnoticed. Yet, you are a minority. You are still a long way from changing the rules of the system. I am facing a grave decision these days. My son’s teacher last words when the school year has ended were “Why don’t you make life easier for him next year? Give him the Ritalin…”.
    This DOES NOT make life easier for him.
    A creative environment will.
    So take no offense from my quoted blog post, but this is what I am experiencing around me.
    Hopefully with more educators who work to change the way the systems work today, things WILL change. Eventually.