12 thoughts on “A Teachable Moment”

  1. I tend to agree. It seems that teachers who teach teachers are in a rut teaching what they were taught by teachers that were taught, etc., ad infinitum. But many of them have no knowledge of the field as it relates to th business side of the house. I know, I have a degree in a field and a techers certificate in that field, yet I knew nothing about the business side of the house. I was missing a whole lot of stuff there.

  2. Do our teachers know their subjects?

    If not, it’ll show. The students will immediately recognize it. No amount of lesson planning can succeed in engaging students on a subject when they notice that not even their teacher was curious enough to learn about it.

    This. They will smell the fraud a mile away and immediately conclude that the subject is completely irrelevant for the rest of their lives. Every good prof I’ve had knew their field, was passionate about it and was therefore a role model of an educated person.

  3. Back in my undergrad college days, I was a math major who decided to look into teaching. In one of my “education classes”, I asked a classmate (an aspiring elementary school teacher) about how many math classes she’d taken. “Oh, the absolute minimum. I hate math!”

    I didn’t say anything but groaned inside. No matter how she tries to smile when it was time to teach math, the kids will quickly pick up on her hatred of math. If the teacher thinks math is icky, what will the kids end up thinking.

    I only lasted a year as a high school math teacher. While I had some good students, far too many were just going through the motions. That kind of attitude sucks the life out of you after a while. Also, I was a veteran. My years as an enlisted man had made me used to poverty but I found I no longer enjoyed it. The Air Force offered me an opportunity for a commission and to fly satellites instead.

  4. (unfortunately) I know a few teachers, some in my own family.

    What they DON’T know would fill thousands of volumes. And I realize everyone can’t know everything, but shouldn’t teachers be a cut above the general populace? It just seems to me that they don’t WANT to know anything. When I’ve questioned their (apparent) lack of knowledge, (and apparent arrogance about CEASING to learn) the family DEFENDS the lack of knowledge!!

    “…do you have any idea how FAST new information comes at teachers NOW, and how busy they are!?”

    “…but she’s ONLY teaching 3rd graders!”

    blah, blah, blah!!!

    Back when I worked for a living, I had “time” to keep reading and learning. And I worked 12 months a year and hell of a lotta OT in my career. And I never got one day a month as a ‘Engineers Work Day’, so I could do my paperwork! But I managed to keep up with new knowledge.

    My younger brother went back to college a few years ago to get a teaching degree. At 49 he was older than all but one of the instructors and he says it showed. He would recount weekly the number of times when he would say,…

    “…well what about (enter late 20th Century historical note here)”

    …and he’d get the deer in the headlights, from the Prof, Asst-Prof, Senior Professor’s Lackey who was teaching! And it didn’t matter the class. During one of his student teaching sessions, he was told be an adviser / evaluator, that he needed to,…

    “…tone back all the in depth and staccato information.”

    HUH?! How can there be TOO much or too fast information, IN SCHOOL!!!!

    So, IMO, it’s being done on purpose.

    And until the PARENTS of these school children start screaming about it, we won’t uncover the reason why anyone wants to under teach America’s children. So far, I can’t find too many parents who SEE that their kids are being shorted.

    Then again, these are the same people who think their kids “deserve” a cell phone at 10, a lap top with unlimited internet access at 13 and a new car at 16. I’m not too sure the parents WANT to know anything about their kids.

    But that’s just one Schtumpy’s opinion.

  5. A friend of mine was an elementary school teacher back in the ’80s. She contends that anyone who stays in teaching longer than three years is either insanely dedicated or so incompetent that there’s no hope of a job elsewhere.

  6. I was at a Christmas party in 2002 and had an acquaintance of mine ask, with all seriousness, how we were so immediately sure that it was the Japanese who attacked us on 12-7-41 and not some other nation.

  7. In grad school I used to teach a science lab course. My first semester on the job, I was mildly appalled when an undergraduate in the lab complained to me that she couldn’t do the lab exercise. You see, it called on her to perform an impossible task: dividing one by five. “The five is bigger than the one, Mr. Murgatroyd, and it won’t fit! You coudl divide one by five, ’cause five is bigger and the one goes into it — one – two – three – four – five — but it doesn’t work the other way ’round!” Yup. Education major.

  8. Unfortunately the entire category of education is broken, from political groups attempting to take a thread, adapt a strategy consistent with its peculiar ideology, and drive that through as the savior of the moment. They oversell and under perform, and frequently make the problem worse with the “minor” accommodations required to fit such in.

    This perpetual partial deconstruction / reconstruction confuses the situation because it is often oversold instead of diagnosed/proved as a “root cause”.

    In our reductionist world there’s always some simple issue we don’t need to think about just shoot. We can’t trust the experts for agendas, no one wants to bother to take the time to address all the broken pieces, and after a while all one wants to do is simply defund all of it to show it who’s boss.

    Think of this as a stack, with the top being the policy/”educator of educators” and the bottom the students/stakeholders. How do you get buy-in from the respective top/bottom for the bottom/top, in time to improve the situation for the trust to be proven, before the situation/perceptions change? The phase lag for communications is months to years. The perceptions change is weeks to months.

    Not going to happen.

  9. Public education has always been used as an agitprop tool by whoever happens to be in power. It fills the hole left by the departure of state religion. “The desire for the State is written in the human heart, because man is evolved for the State; and the State never ceases to draw man to Itself.”

  10. Nooneofanyconsequence just has to be a Federal employee giving instructions on how not to do something bettrthan- anyoneelse.

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