How on Earth do we Teach part II

Being able to compare and contrast concepts and ideas is a hugely important skill for students to develop. In regards to the AMT learning model the students are required to acquire knowledge about the concepts in order to begin the process, making meaning out of them by drawing connections and breaking points, and then transfer that knowledge into applying what they learned to other concepts and ideas. The process helps students grasp the topic at hand, but it also helps them harness skills that are applicable to any other topic, class, or task that they may encounter in the future. The process of breaking concepts down and sorting them by various factors can be implemented pretty universally.

I think that this also applies to what teachers should be doing in class. There is a podcast on the ASCD wedbsite that discusses the need for differentiated instruction. Every classroom is a mixed bag when it comes to students backgrounds, strengths and interests. Because of this it is not effective to present content in a cookie cutter way, because there is no way that one instructional method will reach every student. Because of this, it is important that a teacher be able to find similarities and differences within their students so that they can more effectively reach all of them. This differentiated instruction can include content, process, product and learning environment. This means that the teacher individualizes what is being taught, how it is being taught, and how they are evaluated. This allows all types of students to access the information and demonstrate their understanding to the best of their abilities.

DiverseLearners

I love this comic because it is such an awesome representation on how diverse our classes can be, and how detrimental it can be to teach and evaluate them all in the same way. This is based off of the quote from Albert Einstein where he says;

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

How we teach is the deciding factor on whether or not our students grasp the content we are hoping they will master. We’ve talked about how we can draw a horse to water but we can’t make it drink, and how that may be true but we can make them thirsty for the water (information). I like that because some level of the learning is up to the student, but sparking interest and making the content accessible to all types of students is up to the instructor, and we have quite the task ahead of us in that respect.

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