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dmamec's Message:

I think you might be misunderstanding my point...

I don't think learning how to work in a team means that everything is done in a team and CERTAINLY not that the team gets a grade no matter who did the work...in fact, I believe quite the opposite.

What I mean is that we need to TEACH those skills, not just throw people into group situations and expect them to be successful. I also think that group skills are critical--whether your group is your spouse/life partner, the person on the other end of the telephone, the people in the cubicle next to you, or your neighbors.

I do some cooperative learning but what I want kids to do is understand the dynamics of those around them...know when to ask for help, when to work alone, how to be sensitive to different learning needs and styles.

I guess my main point is that we are trying to get kids ready for a world we cannot imagine.

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
dmamec 06-24-2008 05:23 PM

I agree with Marzano....assessment in general is HUGE.

teach4ever 06-24-2008 05:10 PM

Marzano is a biggie in our district... He compiled data showing what instruction strategies are most effective. We are encouraged to use his highlighted strategies in our teaching.

WebJunkie 06-24-2008 04:21 PM

Inclusion/Collaboration is a big trend. You could find lots of information on that.

dmamec 06-24-2008 02:24 PM

I think you might be misunderstanding my point...

I don't think learning how to work in a team means that everything is done in a team and CERTAINLY not that the team gets a grade no matter who did the work...in fact, I believe quite the opposite.

What I mean is that we need to TEACH those skills, not just throw people into group situations and expect them to be successful. I also think that group skills are critical--whether your group is your spouse/life partner, the person on the other end of the telephone, the people in the cubicle next to you, or your neighbors.

I do some cooperative learning but what I want kids to do is understand the dynamics of those around them...know when to ask for help, when to work alone, how to be sensitive to different learning needs and styles.

I guess my main point is that we are trying to get kids ready for a world we cannot imagine.

edugal 06-24-2008 02:00 PM

thing is...not everyone is or will be required to work in a group and solve problems. Yes, I agree that critical thinking skills provide a solid base for students to grow as individuals and contribute to the greater good. However, our world also needs individuals who can take direction, follow through on a plan, and accept responsibility for the results attained. Sometimes "team" work consists of one or two people doing all the work, and the rest of the "team" basking in the credit. So individual goals are still important, in my opinion, and a necessary component of classroom instruction.

Sometimes "trends" are just that: temporary and tenuous.

rebeccav 06-24-2008 08:12 AM

PLC's. A PLC is a professional learning community. There are a lot of misconceptions as to what a PLC really is. It is NOT a program. It is NOT a team meeting (in the old sense of the word). It is a process in which teachers use data (any form of agreed upon assessment...a test, a product, a writing sample, anything the kids do) to see how kids are doing, what teachers are doing to meet the needs of the kids. It is collaboration, true collaboration, if it is done correctly. It is a very powerful process that enhances a teachers repetoire and a students learning.

dmamec 06-24-2008 03:42 AM

I think the move toward creating students who can become problem solvers and team members is a huge shift from the past where we created students who were being prepared to be "workers". This relates to the idea that we are preparing students to live and work in an era that hasn't been invented yet. Could you have imagined the iphone 10 years ago? Can you IMAGINE what these kids will have? What jobs they will have? What world problems they will need to face?

I believe we need a dramatic change in how we structure schools and learning to help prepare students for life.

There. OFF my soapbox!

It's actually a great question and shows if a candidate is thoughtful and reflective. I think it's great seeking out ideas like this--you can reflect on what other people think and carve out your own answer.

Good luck to you.

noclue 06-24-2008 02:59 AM

I got teacher of the year last year and I had to answer this same essay question.

I don't know where you teach, but I put down that the current trends in education are more hands on learning. Just look at this board. Education is moving to more interactive classrooms, and more hands on things. Readers Workshop and Writer's workshop with a mini-lesson, work-time, share format. It gives time for 1 on 1 conferencing, and peer mentoring.

Gone are the days of worksheets, and sitting in rows. I like what others said about assessments and nclb, and accountability too.

Hope these help!!

starsgrace 06-23-2008 11:43 PM

RtI, Differentiated instruction, NCLB, team teaching- have no ideas if these are trends per say, but its the best i can do...

grade3teacher 06-23-2008 11:37 PM

The big trend I have noticed is that our instruction is becoming more data driven. Assessments, for better or worse, play a big part in education now.

3grteacher 06-23-2008 09:38 PM

I think I would move away from saying anything about current trends even though that is what the question might say. I would say something about NCLB forcing us to take a look at the way we teach and the information we are giving our students. Balanced Literacy is a huge movement towards making our classroom less 'trendy' and more focused and well, for the lack of a better word, balanced!

Looking at how children learn and their individual strengths has made a huge impact on the classroom. (multiple Intellegences, differentiated Instruction, Blooms Taxonomy)

Realizing that holding teachers AND students accountable for their learning is and will make a huge difference in how students achievement will change in the future.

laughoften 06-23-2008 09:25 PM

I know I should probably have some idea of this, and I do to an extent. Yet I don't know where to really look for this information. I google searched it, but turned up with nothing that was of certain interest to me. I'm looking for current trends in education that are pertinent to a classroom teacher. Yes this is an essay question on a job application. I'm not sure what to put. I read once on the job search someone talked about the advancement of technology and not knowing the future we are educating our students for, but I have to describe how that does or does not affect my teaching.
*A website, an idea would be great help... please no useless critiques of me not knowing what's going on the teaching world as those are neither relevant nor helpful




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