My Class and Your Class

August 10, 2012

Motivation, Teaching

My Class and Your Class

I just finished a new staff orientation at the district office.  For about half of the morning, we covered some of the practical details like email, google docs, paychecks and benefits.  The other half was dedicated to introducing the new staff to the culture of the district.  We heard from the Superintendent, the Assistent Superintendent, and the District Curriculum Specialist.  I can tell already that this is going to be an amazing place to work as it seems to be full of passionate and thoughtful people.  Something that the Assistent Superintendent said really stood out to me.  He said it with much more eloquence than this but here’s my best paraphrase:

“What students do in your class will impact what they do in their other classes.  The things they learn and the way they learn in your classroom have the potential to support and shape their learning in other classrooms.  This should impact what and how you teach.”

There are a two connections that I like to make sure I incorporate in my class as often as possible.  First, I want to be sure that what students are learning has real-world significance – that the subject material inside the classroom is connected to the lives of the students outside of the classroom.  I don’t want students to ever get hung up on the feeling that I had through much of my school experience, asking the loaded question, “when will I ever use this?”  Second, I want students to know how the concept we are working on today is is connected to what we did yesterday and what we’ll do tomorrow.  After hearing Jeff Tooker beautifully articulate how each of our classrooms is connected with other classrooms, I think I have to add a third connection.  I want what happens in my classroom to have a positive impact on what happens in the other classrooms that these students will find themselves in throughout their school days.

When we focus on the connections with other classrooms and subjects, teaching becomes much less of an individual endeavor and more of a collaborative experience.

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About Mr. Zerwas

Passionate about Family, Health, Fitness, Nutrition and Multimedia - Teaching Video and Broadcasting and Del Oro High School in Loomis, CA

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