Instructional Tolerance — Chastisement

From Instructional Tolerance and Universal Design:

“You will not assume – and falsely assume in every case I have ever seen – that you actually know what every student is doing, or thinking, or learning, but rather, you will lead an environment in which students are truly “doing, thinking, and learning,” but are doing that in ways which work for each of them.”

I can’t believe I forgot that last year. I feel that taking that tact instead of giving in to the demands of a program I didn’t believe was a serious fear-based copout for me. The pressure on international school teachers to perform to the school’s standards instead of their own is very high. I missed the bar. It’s better to get fired than get unprincipled. 

ADDENDUM: When reviewing both the New London Group’s treatise on multiliteracies and Sir Ken Robinson’s TED talk, I also remembered that my education is what these scholars are calling for in terms of refashioning the education system. I grew up learning physics with LEGOs®, anatomy writing about surgery, and I learned art historical theory — I learned through pictures. Yet I entered a profession where I constantly fight with educators who didn’t get taught that way, who scoff at my ideas, and who don’t understand me.

The system of education most educators were taught in got them into teaching.

My education got me into Harvard. It also got me into life — traditional education almost killed me, literally, and may have killed my creativity had I stayed in it.

Why the hell am I listening to my colleagues whose system nearly killed me? When I know the system kills kids? 

I won’t do that again. Ever. 


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