Three for the Week

Saturdays are my time to reflect on what I read, heard, and discussed throughout the week. It is my “exit ticket” for the last seven days. So here are three ideas that made me think this week. (They are not in any particular order.)

1- If you’ve read more than a couple posts on my blog, you probably know that one of my greatest passions is math education. I am a total nerd when it comes to better understanding how to teach math, especially at the elementary level. I am also a huge podcast fan. So, when I heard Marilyn Burns on a podcast talking about math education, it was like Charlie finding Willy Wonka’s Golden Ticket. “I think that most teachers begin teaching the way we were taught,” Burns said on the podcast. As her teaching career progressed she started to change her thought process. “I got really curious about how do I get kids to be the stars in the classroom rather than me being the star in the classroom. So everything shifted for me from ‘How do I make myself as the most important person in the room?’ to making the students the most important people in the room.” Isn’t that what we should be striving for in every classroom?

2 – A teacher in Nebraska had his favorite pair of shoes stolen from his classroom. His students all chipped in to buy him a new pair. His reaction to the gift shows the impact a great teacher can have on his students. It’s impossible to not see how much he and his students care about each other. On a side note, when I watched this video, somebody must left some chopped onions near me.

3 – I generally save #3 for something light hearted. This story from CBS’s Steve Hartman fits that mold but also has an important message. The arts are so important to our children. We should do everything we can to protect music and art education in our communities. Seeing the look on this nine-year-old boy’s face when he sees the Michigan Marching Band proves that the arts are critically important.