Teaching Thought #44
This thought I’m stealing from Shane’s weekly email, High Impact Leadership.
Not only would I suggest you focus on these three ways, but I would also suggest you help your students develop these traits as well to help make themselves indispensable.
Way #3 – Hard work above all else.
I hate to beat a dead horse, but expose your students to the growth mindset as much as you can.
We need to make hard work cool and sexy again. I think this is one thing coaches do amazingly well. I recall how Coach Mumm used to tell his players, “Conditioning is a privilege.”
How can we extend that same kind of attitude to the classroom where students are prone to try and put in as little work as possible?
For me, it comes down to giving students choice and letting them explore what really matters to them.
Example #1 – The Sticky-Note Book report. For this, I have my students write down three things they love to learn about and two things they absolutely do not want to read about at all costs. Then – from either the media center or from my own classroom library – I offer them a couple books to read. Once students select a book that they think is interesting, they have to do two things – one, annotate it with at least 50 sticky notes, and two, give a 10 minute book talk on it when they are done.
I can’t explain how well this goes over. Students have talked about staying up to read all night, not because they had to get the book done but because they couldn’t put it down! Something amazing happens when students begin to read about things they are really interested in and when they are given enough time to do so.
Example #2 – The passion project. Mrs. Semanko and I do this in our English 12 class. Students are again give time to work on a demonstration of some sort that shows a passion or an interest of theirs. Again, most students really go all in with this . . . because it’s about something that matters to them.