Teacher Shadows a Student

shadows in PragueGrant Wiggins, the author of Educative Assessment and President of Authentic Education, recently shared the experience of a veteran high school teacher shadowing a student. “It was so eye-opening,” writes the teacher, “that I wish I could go back to every class of students I ever had right now and change a minimum of ten things – the layout, the lesson plan, the checks for understanding. Most of it!”

Some of the key takeaways from the experience were:

  • Students sit all day, and sitting is exhausting.
  • High School students are sitting passively and listening during approximately 90% of their classes.
  • You feel a little bit like a nuisance all day long.

The post has been so popular that Wiggins has even done a post-script. In it he summarizes the comments he’s received and makes a call for more teachers to shadow students.

The message of understanding students can apply to Academic Librarians as well. Jessica Olin’s recent post about the subject points out how the “Pedagogy of Convenience” should be overturned and librarians should strive not to teach things like “we’ve always done it” but rather engage students.

What do you think? Are you changing how you engage students?

Image credit: http://tinyurl.com/lru6fh6, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0