Category Archives: Teacher Actions

Posts concerning what the teacher can do in the classroom to promote learning.

4 Ways to Respond to Students

When I was a preservice teacher, I repeated almost everything my students said whenever I taught. One day, my professor observed me teaching and pointed this repetition out and suggested I not do that. Because I was still overly defensive … Continue reading

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Polar Bears

We went out for dinner last night for my oldest son’s birthday. Then, we drove around to look at Christmas lights. As we drove around, our youngest son (4 years old) started talking about the north pole and whether or … Continue reading

Posted in Science Education, Science Saturday, Teacher Actions | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Don’t forget to smile

When I am working with preservice teachers, we talk a lot about the importance of asking questions. We develop interaction patterns we want to work toward and talk about how we can use student comments to ask our next question … Continue reading

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What will become of teacher education?

Schools/programs such as Iowa BIG and Waukee APEX reflect efforts to reform education going back more than 100 years. While the people running these programs might not agree, there is a lot of similarity to vocational programs many of us grew … Continue reading

Posted in Education Reform, Learning, Nature of Teaching, Teacher Actions, teacher education | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Creating Doubt

One of my preservice teachers asked me what I would do when students are working in groups and one group seems to be “right on”. I told her, “I do everything I can to get them to doubt their thinking”. … Continue reading

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Student Participation

Today in my Ed Psych course I asked, “Why do we want students to participate in class?” The preservice teachers easily acknowledged that increased participation likely leads to increased mental engagement & having students hear ideas of other students has … Continue reading

Posted in Relationships, Teacher Actions | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Technology Changes School, but how? (part 3)

The notion that technology uses us can be unsettling.  Yet, preservice teachers must be aware that technologies do make some decisions for them.  For example, if we expand our view of technology beyond modern electronics, the daily school schedule is … Continue reading

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Technology changes schools, but how? (part 2)

Technology has, and will continue to modify our beliefs and value systems.  Such changes will impact our actions.  While techno-enthusiasts talk about the possibilities of technology they miss the subtle hints technology gives about how the technology wants to be … Continue reading

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Teachers’ Beliefs and Technology

Teachers’ beliefs have always played an important role in classrooms (Fang, 1996; Haney et al., 1996; Nespor, 1987). Chen (2006, p. v) confirms this trend related to educational technology implementation: Teachers with more constructivist beliefs made efforts to allocate time … Continue reading

Posted in Critical Examination of Technology, Education Research, Nature of Teaching, Nature of technology, Teacher Actions | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Contextualizing Value-added

Implementation is everything. I’m not philosophically against the notion that we ought to be expecting teachers to “add value” to students’ schooling experience.  However, when we use prescriptive tests to decide how much value is added, I take issue.  For … Continue reading

Posted in Education Reform, General Education, Reflection, Teacher Actions, Teacher Mentoring | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments