Reposted with permission from edCircuit
Many baby boomers share a common, vivid memory: Most stood in a long line at school to get a sugar cube vaccine for protection against the polio epidemic. Parents were justifiably panicked. In 1952 alone, close to 60,000 children were infected, with thousands paralyzed. Swimming pools were closed, and social distancing measures were enacted. * Children with braces on their legs became a common sight, and the world learned what it was like for children to spend their days within the confines of iron lungs. But in the midst of this terrible sorrow and fear gripping the world, medical heroes emerged. Indeed, incredible learning was taking place; in fact, two vaccines were created. One required just two drops of vaccine, often on a sugar cube. Over a fairly short period of time, polio was virtually eradicated.
Continue reading “Helping Learners “Lean In” Intellectually During the Pandemic”
On the last day of my last class before beginning my first
teaching job, the professor asked us if there were questions – perhaps things
not addressed in class. My determined
hand shot up. “What are we to do if we ask students to do something and they
refuse?” This was not just my burning
question – it was my biggest worry in the middle of the night. I was embarking on a high school position
with over 150 students in my charge– how would a young woman who looked a lot
like a teenager have any credibility with these students? Would they even do
what I asked of them? What were my next steps if they did not comply? How long
would I last? What if things spiral out of my control? What if I get fired?
The very nice professor became a bit flummoxed, stammered a bit, but no answer came forth. Fast forward: After teaching a jillion students, working with thousands of teachers in professional development, coaching educators, and being honored to witness fabulous work in countless classrooms, here’s what I know: It was the wrong question to ask. Rather than ask about mechanisms to control students – an impossible task – our focus is really: How can we ignite an intrinsic joy in learning that significantly reduces the need to manage, control, or even kick out kids?
Continue reading “Back to School: Creating a Safe Learning Environment”