Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Andy Hargreaves

Now that, was an invigorating keynote. I'm now twice impressed with the keynote presentations here a BLC '06. Yesterday, Marco Torres gave us a great look at what he was able to do with students in a population similar to the one we're working with at Phoenix. He showed some excellent work by his students. I don't know that these things would work for Phoenix, given our "mission." Still, the thought processes are excellent. Will Richardson links to a full blog of the speech by Steve Dembo for anyone who's interested.
Andy Hargreaves was another who made me think at this conference.
His overarching point was that the current thinking of testing>achievement>learning is on the way out and we will be seeing a reversal to Learning>Achievement>Testing.
He was one of the first people to echo what I have said since moving to Florida. We, as teachers know what we are doing, we must be trusted. Must.
A non-teacher friend sent me a text the other day saying, "Teaching is not a lost art, but th regard for it is a lost tradition."
Hargreaves argues it is coming back. We will be regaining the power.
"Do not concentrate your leadership energies on complying what there is now," he says, "Prepare for what soon will come." I hope it to be true.
What he said interested me the most because it went along with a wonder I had at the beginning of my teaching career that has gradually faded away. Why are we standardizing what we teach? We don't standardize what we do. I mean, yes, there are standards and practices, but not in the same way.
Plus, these tests are faulty representations of what will truly be helpful.
It's an interesting dichotomy that I'm seeing so many wonderful resources at the conference and so many brilliant ideas for authentic learning, but worry that they will not have me preparing for the standardized test that is omnipresent in my county.
Perhaps what Sara Kajder said in her session yesterday is more important. An element of flying under the radar might be important. Ah, renegade teaching, a bold thought.
More later.

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