Do you expect a classroom to be noisy or quiet? Do you expect students to be sitting politely and waiting for the teacher to direct the instruction? If you visit my classroom, and I hope you do, you will find out very quickly that my classroom is a noisy and active place most of the time. It may look messy and be louder than you are accustomed to, but that is learning in action!
In my roles as teacher, employee, boss, daughter, wife, mom, gramma, or friend, I realized that I don’t have all the answers and needed to ask questions, lots of questions. Shouldn’t we expect students to have the same need? Of, course! So I structure every lesson to include many opportunities for students to talk. By encouraging my students to practice putting words together to communicate their ideas, they are building strong relationships with me and their classmates. When my students feel safe and connected and valued, they are then free to explore deeper and make better learning connections. They practice collaborative strategies and learn to negotiate with and listen to others just like they will have to do in their future careers.
So now you know a bit about why my classroom is a noisy place. Learning thrives when relationships develop. I hope you’ll stop by soon and practice learning with us.
I found these resources recently. I’d like to know what you think, so please leave a comment, too.
Atlanta Speech School
Thirty Million Word Initiative
The Promise from Atlanta Speech School on Vimeo.