A calling ...

"We are called to be architects of the future, not its victims."

"Make the world work for 100% of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological offense or the disadvantage of anyone."

- Buckminster Fuller

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Reboot

I recently finished using Audacity to record a read-aloud of Charlie Parker played be bop to share during an interview for a long-term sub position as a Kindergarten teacher .  Over my read-aloud, I overlaid a track from Jazz at Massey Hall, featuring Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell, Max Roach, and Charlie Mingus.  I was inspired to model fluency for my prospective Kindergarten students based on something I read today.

Last week, out of the blue, I was called by someone at a Title I School who had worked with me last year and liked the way I teach.  Her school requires a licensed teacher.  Thankfully, I have the credentials, a PK-6 License.  So here I go.  Today, I read Yardsticks, by Chip Wood.  Mr. Wood confirmed what has been frustrating me about my experiences trying to teach in Title I Schools:
"[S]chedules in today's American schools don't always pay attention to the pace of childhood or children's changing developmental needs from age to age...Children have almost no time in their school day to reflect on their learning, to make calm, organized transitions between classes or subjects, or to delve deeply into learning that they love.  Sadly, school resembles more and more a miniature adult world of packed schedules, multitasking, and exhaustion.  Not only are we modeling this world for children by our own adult behavior, we are moving these practices into the world of school with the belief that they are necessary for children's academic success." (Wood, pp.18-19)
As I continue to read Yardsticks, I feel better about my natural inclination to want to slow things down for children, and avoid over-whelming them.  With Yardstick Charts, I'll have a better idea what to expect from children in terms of developmental factors.