I have been surprised by the emails and discussions that I have had with people over the changes I have made in my room. I blogged about this change a while back in a post called “Revamping My Classroom: Goodbye Desks Hello Couches and Beanbags“. In this post I describe how I changed my room to see if a new environment would be more conducive to learning. While the jury is still out on its effectiveness, I have been very surprised and disheartened by the amount concern this has created among teachers.
As teachers we must change to the times to provide the best learning environment for our students. If you are not willing to change and try new things, you will not be a successful teacher. We all have good lessons that we use over and over again, but even these lessons need to be tweaked to meet the needs of students today. Change is something that must happen often. Changing how we engage students and the tools we use, allows teachers to meet the needs of more of our students. The idea behind changing my room was to create a more relaxed atmosphere and to have students collaborate more. I have found that at this point engagement is up and there is no difference in classroom management. I did not tell my students why I was doing this, but I have had a few students say to me that my room feels more relaxed.
in essence change. So why does anytime a teacher thinks outside of the box and challenge the norms of teaching does it cause such a a big stir? The reaction of adults and other teachers is really strong when they see my room.
“What are you doing?”
“That will never work.”
“Students can’t learn like that.”
These are some of the comments from parents and teachers. Education has to change. The way I was taught as a kid will not work on a student of today. So why should I teach like I am in 1970 when it is 2010?
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