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RE: [teacherartexchange] Best Practices

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From: San D Hasselman (shasselman_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Thu Oct 16 2008 - 17:11:33 PDT


Best practices is a general catch all term that sounds quite formulaic. From my 33+ years of teaching, I have found that that your "best practice" is what works for you, and may not work for someone else. When I mentor student teachers and new teachers, my concern is that they know their subject, have a handle on how to handle kids, have a passion for what they are teaching, and use their gut to read the moment. My best practices change from class to class, group of students to group of students. Throw in the day to day "stuff" that happens to kids, and to teachers, from fire drills to guidance passes (obviously I teach HS) to adolescent angst, a good teacher has to 'read' the class to be able to share what they know. I have read every book possible on 'best practices', have taken workshops in both educational jargon, and art techniques and have even taught a few over the years. Bottom line, if you don't know your subject matter, and can't read kids, you are sunk. You can learn to write lesson plans in any f
ormat, you can learn to map your curriculum, order supplies with a limited budget, and teach new subjects on demand. But if you don't have a passion and urgency to know your subject, and you don't have a clue about kids, you can read all of the best practices books you want, you won't be able to implement any of them. IMHO

San D

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