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Nigel Coutts

Politics, Education and Lessons from 2016 - The Learner's Way - 15 views

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    It is difficult to have not noticed that the Presidential Election in the United States of America has been somewhat controversial. The same conclusion can be drawn about 'Brexit'. The implications of these events will keep historians, political analysts and indeed educators busy for many years. Regardless of your political leanings there are genuine implications for educators in these events and a considered response now and in the coming months (even years) will be required. 
Roland Gesthuizen

The Great "Respect" Deception | Edutopia - 46 views

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    I define a rule as what you enforce every time it's broken. Platitudes cannot be enforced because there is no line to cross, there's nothing predictable for students to understand, and they're too vague to be useful. In essence, these clumps allow teachers to enforce anything whenever they want under any conditions they chose. It's a get into jail free card. Rules aren't reduced by clumping them -- they are only hidden from students. Often, the only way students can find the real lines is by crossing them. This encourages rule breaking rather than stopping it.
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    I define a rule as what you enforce every time it's broken. Platitudes cannot be enforced because there is no line to cross, there's nothing predictable for students to understand, and they're too vague to be useful. In essence, these clumps allow teachers to enforce anything whenever they want under any conditions they chose. It's a get into jail free card. Rules aren't reduced by clumping them -- they are only hidden from students. Often, the only way students can find the real lines is by crossing them. This encourages rule breaking rather than stopping it.
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    I find, however, that if you inundate students with rules and consequences, especially when they are the same rules every time, students view these as your expectations of their behavior. When they believe you expect the worst from them, they will rise to that expectation. Many rules teachers make are actually procedures, as defined by Henry Wong. If we teach procedures instead, and simply reteach the procedure every time it is not followed, they eventually get tired of being retaught the procedure and just do it. I think what some in education forget is that students, no matter what age, expect and deserve respect, too. If we consistently offer respect and dignity, even when we aren't receiving it in return, the rest of the class notices and responds in return. There need to be some rules that are clearly stated with real enforceable consequences. They need to be only a few and very important. Every professional work place has a few. But we also need to send the clear message that school, as preparing them for the workplace that will not have a100 page rule book, is where we are showing them a model of behavior that is *implicitly* expected in every segment of society.
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    "Because so many educators have come to believe the myth of "the fewer rules, the better" (which I was taught in my teacher training program), they have developed what I call deception clumps. They throw as many rules as possible into a respectably titled non-communicative clump: "
N Carroll

Character and Ethics - 2 views

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