Sharing ideas on Education, Leadership and Life

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Seeing the Whole Picture

I spent a large part of today on a train and inevitably you tend to watch people and see how they interact etc. 
That made me think about the the following story I heard at an administrators conference a number of years ago. 

A new teacher was up for a reward and needed to video one of his classes. He asked a mentor of his from graduate school to look and video and give some feedback. The student was so excited and when he gave his tape to his mentor mentioned what a great lesson it was. 
Well after the mentor watched it he didn't what to do. It wasn't a good lesson and didn't know what to tell his student. He  just put it off and one day the student called and asked him well did you watch  the video? Did you see how I was using different modalities, and was using all of these techniques. 

After that it clicked in the mentor's head what was going on. The student / new teacher saw the video and focused on himself the teaching while the mentor saw the students. One was bored and that one student was in the bathroom for 12 min and that the teacher called on only 5 different students. 
The mentor was looking at the learning in the classroom. 

When the the mentor told us the story he said that often teachers focus on the teaching which is what  they are doing in the class but often miss and don't focus on  if there is learning going on. To focus on the learning you need to look at what the students are doing. 

As I sat on the train looking and hearing different interactions we often don't see the whole picture and it reminded me that often we need to look at things with a wider lens and see the whole picture. 

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