Even Low Tech Schools Shouldn’t Suck

rafranzdavis Professional Growth, Teaching Strategies 0 Comments

Braeden's completed spelling homework

Braeden’s completed spelling homework

Let me preface this by saying that not every class has access to student devices. However, every teacher has access to ideas. We all share a natural connection. It’s called the internet and google works wonders. – R. Davis

Effort is a big deal for most to give. In this profession, it should be the norm. What we expect is not often what we get. What we accept is an entirely different story.

Those of us that are connected via social media have come to understand a reality that includes engaging students in innovative ways. We feed off of each other’s ideas and speak of a reality that is still a dream to lots of children. The fact is that in a lot of our schools kids are still getting more of the same and it’s sad.

I rushed home from work yesterday expecting to come home to a family of kids excited about their day at school, especially my nephew a 3rd grader. Instead, I came home to a child who left school on day 1 hating it.

He spoke of worksheets, a smartboard that he has never touched in his life as a student (only nice teachers let kids touch the board), a teacher who spent more time talking about the STAAR test than about engaging him and his class. He came home with homework that we had to force him to do. His assignment was to write 25 words 5x each and read a book…the same one everyday this week. He even came home with an excel math worksheet that she said wasn’t homework but that they could do if they wanted to. He didn’t want to and we didn’t make him. He hates school and guess what…he should…if school is like this.

School should be a place that kids want to be. You can’t talk about learning being fun when parents are around and then do the opposite of that when in the classroom. I can’t think of a child who begs to be “worksheeted” to death. I mean…really?

Here’s a novel non-tech idea…on day 1, get kids to write about their best summer moment. Create a book with pictures and share it with a classmate. Heck, let kids collaborate on day one and create stories together. It would’ve been great for Braeden’s reading to be the work of a new friend versus a printed book that bears no meaning to him.

In lieu of writing 25 words 5x each, have him write a story using some of those words with the correct meaning. That idea came from twitter as well as the idea of playing with the words on spelling city. My gosh, do something different..anything other than the antiquated ideas that he was exposed to.

Challenge kids to be creative and make them WANT to be there.

The time that they have in school may be their only escape from their reality of life at home. School should not suck worse.

In case, you’re wondering…I can’t make this stuff up! I’ve included a graphic below.

Yes, NONSENSE is one of his vocabulary words!

homework

 

 

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