Sunday, August 16, 2009

Challenging their Professional Identity

Wesley Fryer, of Moving @ the Speed of Creativity, is one of my favorite blogsters to read.  He always has interesting information, ideas, and insights.  I like how he also involves his children and their technology activities, sometimes, in his blogs. He seems like such a kind, generous, mild mannered person and then suddenly…

He makes some VERY CHALLENGING (but true!) STATEMENTS:

Wesley says, “To ask an educator used to lecturing every day to give it up for vodcasting, and instead to both craft and lead highly-interactive, engaging face-to-face discussions with students is tantamount to challenging their professional identity and raison d’être.”

Read the whole blog here.  He started the whole story with talk about the “Teaching Naked” controversial comment/title in an article about Dr. José A. Bowen of Southern Methodist University.

Because so many teachers of today are the BABY BOOMERS, who are getting ready to retire, as soon as their teacher pensions will allow them to retire (in this economy), there is little (if none) desire to “re-work” lectures and lesson plans by MANY teachers, but this is not everyone in the profession

Now I have to qualify myself here.  I, too, am a BABY BOOMER, who currently is out of the classroom. (I thought I’d retire and then along came the recession and all of its negative impact on my financial security!)

But I am trying to get back into teaching in the classroom because…  I WANT to do this type of teaching.  I personally am a lifelong learner plus technology and collaborative learning are exciting prospects for me.

True, I am at the elementary level, not high school and college, but the statement above by Wesley Fryer is still pertinent in the elementary education classroom as well.

I also have another question that may or may not be related to this whole topic. You decide.

Are we teaching the future teachers how to teach in this “new” manner or are they just learning the “same old ways” we BABY BOOMERS were taught in the late 60’s and 70s?

Tell me what you think. And if you think we are not teaching them in the “new” manner, what needs to be done? What can we do as leaders?

[As always, in my author quotes, the underlines, color changes, and bold type is mine, not the author’s.  I do this so often, I should probably put a disclaimer to this effect at the bottom of every blog!]

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