Friday, January 24, 2014

Teaching Like It's 1900

Today, students in Creek Valley Elementary School first grade teacher, Britt Theis's class took a trip to The Old Cahill School in Edina. While there, the students were able to visit a school house that has been preserved to model what a school house in 1900 might have been like. Britt tweeted out this photo:

The picture got me thinking about a few questions:

  • Asside from the wooden desks and the blackboard, how different is this classroom from the ones in most of our schools today? 
  • If your classroom is similar to this one, is it because:

    1. It was the best configuration for students to learn then, and it is still true now
    2. That's the furniture I was provided with
    3. That is the configuration I grew up in and am most comfortable with
    4. Other
  • Is this the best configuration for today's learers?
  • What pedagogical style is this best suited for?
I think by my tone here and the questions I'm asking, you can tell that I think it's time for a change. If we are going to move to a more student-centered, digital age environment for learning, we have to organize our learning spaces differently. I welcome your thoughts.

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