Monday, April 2, 2012


Question: What can we change as teachers?

> “We can change our practice. Start fresh…. Throw out the plans from years past, both the ones that didn’t work and also—especially—the ones that worked beautifully….”

> “We can be conscious of our practice. Writing a teaching journal…has been a wonderful experience for me. It allows me to respond to what I’m wondering about….”

> “We can expose ourselves to difference. That’s what we do when we go to conferences or read professional journals….”

> “We can free ourselves of the obligation always to be right.”

> “We can keep moving and practice keeping quiet. We are so used to the telling mode of instruction that we forget our own advice to writing students: ‘Don’t tell me, show me!’ April [a student] fives related advice in this final comment:

I think the teacher should know about the authors and the basics of the unit, but as far as interpretation goes, that’s a different story. All people interpret things differently and most of the fun of it is learning how others perceive something. Sometimes teaching means listening.  P. 60.

Comment: Some fundamentally sound advice on changing our approach to teaching. These principles of teaching are on my wall. RayS.

Title: “Literature and Teaching: Getting Our Knowledge into Our Bones.” Bill Martin. English Journal (September 1992), 56-60.

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