A post-pandemic vision of teaching and schools.

 

Screen Shot 2020-07-13 at 11.53.51 AMThe conversations I’ve been having with parents, teachers, substitutes, staff and retirees have been heartbreaking.

Here we are in mid-July and few know what school will look like just weeks away.

Like most things connected to the pandemic where our political leadership is failing, as far as schools are concerned, students, their families, teachers and staff will be the victims.

Poor kids. Black and Brown kids. They will pay the heaviest price.

Yet in talking to parents and teachers, the stories are not the same.

Some parents tell me that their children have thrived with distance learning.

Others say their kids struggle.

Educators talk about the impact of the loss of social and emotional development that comes with being in a physical school.

Although I wonder how this can be accomplished if all the safety recommendations are actually followed.

The current pandemic will end and we need to remember this discussion when it does end.

I’m hoping the experience can be instructive for a post-pandemic world of education.

Students and teachers thrive or struggle in different learning environments. It seems obvious and yet we have gone through decades of standardization and one-way, same page on the same day, one curriculum accountability.

Maybe getting through this pandemic will give birth to a different vision of public schools, one which looks at students as individuals.

One thought on “A post-pandemic vision of teaching and schools.

  1. Fred, may it be so—— My dream always (since i was a little kid) was a school that let each kid learn the way they learned easiest, at their own speed, in their own way. I couldn’t tell the alphabet apart till 3rd grade, fortunately I was in a school that didn’t shame me about it, but let me enjoy knowing how to manipulate numbers (primarily in my head, not written). A story of my grandson, when he was in elementary. He’s never been a reader. but my genes run strong, he does amazing math in his head. Trouble, he was in common core school, so it was necessary for him to write a paragraph about each math problem rather than just know the answer and write it down. He at that point was really enjoying word problems( you know, the train is coming from this direction at that speed with how many people and passes the other at what point kind of problems)….. and he always knew the answer as soon as the problem was read to him. SO—— I asked him what was his thought process when it wasn’t instantly obvious, figured he could write that down. He talked me thru the process as we did a problem. “There is a big tree. The different parts of the problem are on the different branches and the answer shows up on the trunk.” I suggested he draw that picture for his teacher but the teacher didn’t appreciate it, still gave him no credit for the right answer. i love his thought process but he got failing grades while turning in all the right answers. This was my experience in advanced geometry with Coach Roache— only time i didn’t get an a in math.

    I taught my kids’ math classes thru elementary because i got how their brains worked and gathered a few to join us in playing math!

    Elise

    >

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