Archive for February, 2010

Post #6

February 26, 2010

Yesterday in class we discussed the influence teachers’ expectations have on the students’ learning.  From my experience as I student, I agree that the teachers have a lot to do with the students’ confidence and learning.  Too often teachers have set expectations for their students.  For example, teachers should never give up on their students, but too often teachers just loose hope; and do not sufficiently help the students who need help the most.  Teachers should be flexible and do their best to adjust to the needs of all their individual students.

Through my grammar school experience teachers were too certain I understood the material, but just struggled with tests.  For instance, I struggled with the addition and subtraction of negative numbers.  But for some reason my teacher was convinced that I understood these concepts, but I was dyslexic or had some other learning disabilities.   I feel like teachers say way too many students have learning disabilities as excuse for low test scores, instead of helping all students and ignoring prejudgments.

Post #5

February 24, 2010

Gutman described the importance of everyone having the freedom to make their own educational decisions.  I feel that in today’s America everyone eventually gets to choose their own career path.  Most people freely choose their academic focus and future job.  I’m not saying everyone gets to be a professional basketball player,  but people are definitely not forced into career paths in this country anymore.  In fact, even if you are pressured into the wrong occupation you can easily change jobs.  I think the average American has like 7 differnet full-time jobs throughout their life.  It sucks that people are unhappy and constantly change jobs.  However, this shows that people have the freedom to change to career they want to do.

Gutman also discussed the role individual citizens should have on local schools.  i think this is a still a problem in today’s world.  We live in a democratic nation, so us citizens should be able to democratically effect educational curriculum and policies, especially on a local level.  Gutman says, “the more effective the control that citizens have over school policies, moreover, the more likely they are to support them”.  Furthermore, I think localized school autonomy leads to a more enjoyable and meaningful experience for the students.  Therefore, I believe cities (and eventually all communities) should have localized school autonomy, such as the Boston Charter School System.

Power is everywhere. Where is democracy?

February 5, 2010

So we read this week that there are power forces everywhere, especially in education.  Students have power over other students.  Teachers have power over their students.  Principals have power over teachers; and it just keeps on going.  But why are we focusing on power forces.  We should be focusing on democratizing the classroom.  The more I study education the more I think democratic aspects need to be inplememented into education.  For example, teacher should democratize their classrooms, instead of lecturing all the time.  This seems simple and obvious, but is just the begginning of where democracy is required in the classroom.

Who chooses what is important to learn?  Curriculum planning should be more democratic.  You shouldn’t teach something, because someone decided it will be on a standardized test.