So if Teachers Wont "Read It" What are We doing with Kids!

Over on the Left Lane Ends, where Jerram Froese blogs, I was struck by this statement:

“We’re doing some great curriculum work with McRel over the course of this year and today’s focus is on developing a good unit overview and how assessment should be woven into the published curriculum. I’ve posted it before, spewed it to friends and commented in more meetings that I care to remember about how we ought to treat teachers, educators as professionals. After reading a ‘model overview’ (about probability) that was VERY well worded, we were invited to comment. My thoughts? [in my head: ‘wow, this is a NICE overview. It actually has the ‘why' built into it and makes real world connections. this would really get my brain going if I was teaching probability.']
I guess others had different thoughts in their head. The first vocal comment was, ‘This is too long. Teachers won’t read it.’”

He goes on to say that teachers are so focused on test prep that they don't have time to do anything else.

My own children have testing upon them.  It is not something we think about all year, but right now I'm making extra sure that they sleep well, eat well in the mornings and just that they do their best.  I do look at the tests and yet, it is NOT the only thing.

You see, I have two kids with LD and when we “found” these issues, my boys had a profound drop in their test scores that year.  It scared me.  I will not share what those were, but I will say that one of my boys jumped 80 PERCENTILE POINTS in one year after proper diagnosis and accommodation.  80 POINTS.

My concern is that test scores are a measurement but not a diagnosis of the worth of a child nor their future.

Also, I'm sitting here thinking about how teachers complain how children won't read important things, and here, I'm hearing that a teacher won't read something that is important to the teacher.

And this is a personal pet peeve of mine:

I will not ask of my students that which I will not do myself.

  • If we don't want to sit in a 10 hour session with someone lecturing to us about project based learning — neither should we turn around and lecture to our kids hour after hour.
  • If we want engaging training and MEANING in what we do for professional development, we should do the same in our classrooms.
  • If we want kids to read things and be inquisitive – we should do the same.  When is the last time you took a new idea to the curriculum director.
  • We want our students to have a positive attitude about things they don't want to do – will teachers have a positive attitude about doing things they don't like?

Likewise — the same with administration:

Model the behavior you wish to see in teachers.  If you want them working from early morning until late — do the same yourself.

If you want them to be there on time — be there on time yourself.

Students want geniuineness — and so do teachers.

We all must be professionals.  Oh, boy, I wish I was as perfect as Mrs. Adkins or Mrs. Caldwell or Mrs. Dean at my school — they seem to do no wrong.  But one thing that makes them all so great is that in their 30 + years of teaching a piece that they never stop learning, they always push to do more, and they are, above all things professionals.  I love them dearly and want to be more like them.

Something about this post resonates with me.  Guess I'm just talking to myself again.

Never miss an episode

Get the 10-minute Teacher Show delivered to your inbox.

Powered by ConvertKit
Picture of Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

All Posts »
The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere
Update Required Flash plugin