We are more than just “Teachers”

When people refer to you as just a teacher.. remember this.

The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

We all have heard of the great Martin Luther King Jr. I came across this quote while I was doing research for our Theorists papers. This is a pretty recognizable quote. To me it is more than just a few words that just so happened to come out of Martins mouth.

“The Function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically.” I agree with my whole heart with this because teaching is NOT just about making sure your students understand the curriculum and subject being taught. Especially in Primary Grades, you are not only teaching them academically you are also helping them with life skills out of school as well. I like to think that when I am finally a teacher that I will be making differences in all my children’s lives in and out of school. Half of teaching is applying your lessons to life experiences that will relate to your students. “Intelligence plus character.” THIS is what teaching is. WE are expanding their knowledge, teaching them basic skills, and most importantly helping them find themselves. To most students we will not be just a teacher. We will take on rolls as friends, counselors, parents, siblings, and a safety net if the need us to be. As I teacher I strive to teach them intelligence plus build their character.

 

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Books away- Test time

In my elementary school days I have experienced the Tyler Rationale. I believe that in my early school days the curriculum was based on the type of school I was in, the subject’s teachers needed to cover with their students, and what was important in the curriculum being asked of the teachers. I experienced his four basic principles because I felt in my elementary school days we were always tested on everything and that no matter what there had to be an outcome with the information or events we were learning. I don’t agree with what. I know that to some existent there has to still be tests, but I was never strong in test writing. I am more of hands on learner. Even to this day when writing tests my anxiety is through the roof.  I remember having to write CAT scans, and in high school trying to learn how to study because none of your teachers ever went over study tips and now we were expected to memorize everything we learn that semester. With that being said, some of the limitations with the Tyler rationale would be that there are always tests, and a way to determine what the children are learning and how well they are progressing, that children who do not succeed with test writing have no chance. We need to keep in mind that not all our students will be on the same learning and skill level and that doesn’t mean anything bad. Some potential benefits of the Tyler Rationale are that we can use his four basic principles as an outline of what we as teachers can ask ourselves about curriculum and how are students are comprehending the materials and strategies we are using.

The Tyler Rationale limits the abilities that our students have outside of test writing. It isn’t focused on the different types of learners we have, or the different skill levels all our students will be at.

What is common sense?

How does Kumashiro define ‘common-sense?’ Why is it so important to pay attention to the ‘common sense’?

Common sense is the ability to understand and judge things that all people do without questioning what you are doing. Kumashiro states that Common Sense is the insistence that we “use our common sense” is really an insistence that we view things as some in society have traditionally viewed things and want to continue viewing things. So Kumashiro is saying that when we are insisting we use our common sense when forming schools and more importantly our own classroom that we are continuing to privilege only certain practice, and groups of people. It is important to pay attention to common sense because common sense is not what should shape our educational reform or curriculum design, Kumashiro states it is what needs to be examined and challenged. It is very important to pay attention to the common sense because common sense is not universal like in Nepal. What we think is common sense here will not necessarily be common sense somewhere else. With that being said, we cannot let common sense rule how we do things because we can be marginalizing other people from different places with different back rounds.

Mikayla Lowes