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Re: I Need Some Data On WOW

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From: Maggie White (mwhiteaz_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Aug 25 2002 - 11:06:33 PDT


Maggie Tucker wrote:

> the student is a customer and the teacher must
> provide engaging lessons in order for the customer to properly consume the
> language.

Oh for heaven's sake! What are we, Big Bird?! This approach sounds
ridiculous. If the child chooses not to "consume" what you have to
offer, then what?

> My new principal is perverting (at least I hope she is perverting) the
> message by demanding that all related arts classes be "fun." <snip>
>
> I've read Schlecty's work this weekend, and I really can find no evidence
> that he wants any class to be
> this simplistic.

I agree with what Nnaell wondered--if the principal is making the same
demands of math and science. Is there a way to contact Schlecty and ask
him if this is how he meant his approach to be used? If you have any
memo or something written from the principal, send it to him in its
entirety, or send him, as verbatim as possible without editorial comment
from you, the discussion with your principal. He might be horrified to
discover that his approach has been distorted like that. I remember
reading that Madeline Hunter was very disturbed that her methods were
being used too stringently, and teachers were being canned if each
lesson didn't cover each step; she stated it wasn't meant to be part of
teacher evaluation.

Study your state and national standards as backup. Ask your principal
very sweetly for some guidance to make the standards more "engaging." I
think we all strive to provide engaging lessons, but at some point the
students have to knuckle down and learn things that are necessary and
perhaps not very interesting to them.

You might even really go out on a limb and try to contact some other Big
Names (like Fred Jones) and ask their opinion of the approach or your
principal's demand. They may not be willing to diss a fellow educator,
but they might offer some data or other info to back you up.

Good luck!

Maggie

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