Sharing ideas on Education, Leadership and Life

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Once a Master Teacher always A Master Teacher or...

A friend of mine asked me the following question; If you are a Master Teacher are you always a Master Teacher? I asked for some clarification. Well to make a long story short he said that he has a teacher who has been in his school for a number of years and came with great references and has even been a teacher mentor,and was said to be a Master Teacher, but he doesn't see that. He sees classroom management issues which leads to issues in discipline and he/she doesn't seem to be connecting with the students and is very old schooled. Bottom Line the current teacher he sees is not a master teacher.

I gave him the following two possibilities.

1. There is a difference between Teaching and Learning and therefore I would suggest a difference between Being a Teacher and being an Educator. What we need and should demand in our classrooms are Educators. Educators look at the child/ student as whole and work at making a connections with their students and therefore their classrooms are more child centered which leads to more engaged learning.
Teaching or just being a Teacher is as the name suggests focused on a Teacher centered approach and a more top down approach. Therefore to answer the question at hand. Yes this teacher may be a master teacher and be a mentor to give over the material etc. However when it comes to dealing with the students and the learning component, or in other words what makes an educator this person is not a Master.

Then tonight I was reading a blog post from Mr. Rice entitled " My Educator's Oath"
( I hope to give you my personal educator's oath in a future blog) he ends his blog with the following "I challenge each of you to write your own educator’s oath. Forever consider it to be a work in progress. Revise it often. Throw it away and start over. As you evolve, it should too." In order to be a Master Teacher or Educator you must be willing grow, progress and evolve. Therefore it would seem to me that the teacher in question was never truly a Master Teacher since he/she did not posses the ability to learn and grow.

To summarize a person can be a good or master teacher but not a good educator, or if you don't want to split hairs between teachers and educators, then if you are truly a master teacher you realize that you need to change and adopt to changing times and presumably will continue to learn and grow and will always be a master teacher. If not I would question if this person was ever truly a master teacher.

What do you think: Once a Master Teacher are you always a Master Teacher....


1 comment:

  1. Has your perception as a master teacher changed in the last year? I attribute my change from "teacher" to "educator" relates directly to the learning that has taken place through conversations I have had online.

    I have written a "manifesto" that I use to guide my classroom presence, It was so powerful for me I had my students this year write their own learning manifesto. That in turn led to a new conversation,

    These types of conversations might take place in the halls of a school, but I think they are much more likely to take place online due to the passion of the educators found there. I think we need to remind ourselves sometimes "We are the music-makers, And we are the dreamers of dreams" and not everyone is like us.