Blog Response #5

Blog Response #5

Title of Post: Reaching Across Cultures

URL: http://davidwarlick.com/2cents/

David Warlick states that, "today, young musicians are able to reach across the decades and watch the greats, study their styles, slow the action, and know the atmosphere".

My Response:

Hi David,

What your son and Steve's son have been able to do with YouTube is amazing. I played the drums in various school bands for nearly ten years and was always recommended to listen to the great musicians of the past to improve my own playing. I graduated from high school two years ago and never once thought about implementing YouTube when practicing. I was able to read music very well and saw an amazing difference in my ability when I would take time to critically listen to songs. While through listening to music one can improve on style, rhythm, and feel, it is more difficult to improve one's technique simply by listening to music. Through using YouTube to actually watch musicians play, I realize how it would make it easier for students to see how they move their limbs, the sticking they use to create a certain type of sound, and the communication between musicians beyond just how the parts interact. Utilizing YouTube is a brilliant way to combine visual with auditory learning, especially in the case of music education.

-Caitlin

 

Blog Response #4

Title of Post: Standardization, Accountability and the Ethic of Care

URL:http://practicaltheory.org/serendipity/index.php?/archives/901-Standardization,-Accountability-and-the-Ethic-of-Care.html

Chris Lehmann claims that "...every year, we run into those kids who we know that if we only found a way inside... found a way to make school and curriculum relevant to how to survive the unspeakably difficult lives they go home to after they leave our walls, then somehow we could make their lives better...There are times when we know that what we do for 99% of our students does not work for the last 1% of our kids..."

My Response:

Hi Chris,

I find your post to be very interesting and it deals with some issues I have always wondered about. I agree that it is important to find a way to adhere to the individual needs of your students to the best of your ability. I also see how this can be a very difficult task, especially if you come from a drastically different background than your students. As a future educator, I fear that I will not be able to truly relate to my students who fall in that 1% category you speak of despite efforts to help. I grew up in suburbia in an area that had a great deal of resources and prided itself on the academic success of its students. Throughout my schooling, I was in honors and AP classes. While I can find superficial parallels to the experiences of inner city kids, I have a feeling that my students would have a difficult time believing that I truly understood where they were coming from. This would prove to be an obstacle if I hoped to get through to them and sincerely help. I guess I find it difficult to help those who you have a hard time directly relating to due to the fact that they may not fully trust your efforts. If you can not truly relate to your students, is it even possible to help them to the degree that it will change their lives?

-Caitlin

 

Blog Response #3

Title of Post: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teachers
URL: http://teaching.mrbelshaw.co.uk/index.php/2007/10/15/the-7-habits-of-highly-effective-teachers/

Doug Belshaw claims that “to know where they are with you and their studies, students must know the framework. That means you have to be consistent.”

 My Response:

 Hi Mr. Belshaw,

     What I was drawn to the most was your belief in consistency. I agree with you fully on this. A teacher cannot except to be effective to any degree if he/she is not capable of remaining consistent in the classroom. This does not only involve the structure of the actual class time in terms of daily activities and expectations, but also the teacher’s ability to remain steady when dealing with discipline. I recently observed a 9th grade English class. While the teacher was very charismatic and had a lot of energy, she was not very consistent. Out of the entire fifty minute period, I timed a mere ten minutes that was actually devoted to teaching English. Throughout the period, the entire class was very rowdy and disrespectful (not only to the teacher, but also to fellow classmates). The teacher finally stepped up and began to track the amount of time it took the entire class to settle down. How ever long it took was the time the class had to stay after the bell. I thought this was a great idea and it appeared to work. However, when the bell rang, she let the class go on time. I was surprised and wondered how many more times she’d be able to use that strategy to calm her class if they knew she wouldn’t follow through with her threats. It is here that I realized the issue of consistency (or lack there of). Had this teacher remained consistent in her discipline, I honestly believe that the ten minutes spent teaching the subject would increase dramatically (over time) due to the fact that the kids would be more respectful and attentive. As a future educator, I will have to keep in mind the importance of consistency in my classroom for the sake of my students as well as myself.

 

-Caitlin Colins

 

Blog Response #2

Title of Post: Make a difference

URL: http://anne.teachesme.com/

In response to a fifth grader's question regarding violence, Anne Davis wrote "one thing I want you to know is that each day millions of children go to school and go to bed and their lives are full of happy and good things. All the good things that go on in the world go on without making headlines in the news. I wish we would hear more about those good things that are happening. These bad things do happen though."

My Response:

Hi Anne,

I would first like to say that I agree with the way in which you responded to this student's question. You answered her question directly, taking care to note that good things do happen while bad things still exist. Your post prompted me to reflect on something that I feel I have always struggled with: to what extent should we shelter students from the violent realities of the world? I struggle with this question because, in my opinion, I did not lead a sheltered childhood. My parents did not hide reality from my sisters and me; they wanted us to know the truth. I recently attended a wake of a girl I went to high school with and ran in to an old acquaintance of mine who seemed very distraught, aside from the fact that her friend had passed away. She explained to me that it was the first wake she had ever been to in her whole twenty years of living. I was surprised by this fact given that it was the eighth wake I had been to in my own nineteen years of living. I had always assumed that everyone my age had experienced death at least once. From this I realized the vast diversity among students in regards to their experiences of difficult life events. I have always believed that children should not be sheltered from these realities yet care should be taken to inform them in the healthiest manner possible when questions arise. In a few years, I will be teaching at the high school level. While my students will be older than the young girl you responded to, I know that their backgrounds and outlooks on life will differ from one another and that there will be varying degrees in their abilities to cope with tragedy. I realize that in order to preserve the wellbeing of my students, I will need to keep these facts in mind and devise ways in which to address issues that may arise. Thank you for your time.

-Caitlin Colins

 

Blog Response #1

Title of Post: Books are good too

URL: http://www.thethinkingstick.com/?p=557

Jeff Utecht claims that "...there is something about books. Something that movies do not capture, something that gets lost when you are reading in digital form. There is something about flipping pages, about reading in different comfortable positions that you just cannot replicate...I am not a book hater, I am a digital lover. My RSS reader is my book, making me think, making me ponder, and allowing me glimpses into the lives of those I read."

My Response:

Hi Jeff,

I found your post very interesting seeing as I hope to teach English in the future. When I was first introduced to the idea of technology in the classroom, I was totally against it, especially for a literature class. I felt as though using technology would take away from the overall experience and connection with a piece of literature. However, as I began to think about it more, I realized that students could actually benefit from the use of technology in a literature class through possible live internet conversations with various writers or theorists. By using the internet, teachers can open new possibilities in literary analysis and discussion. I agree with you that attempting to curl up with a laptop to read an e-book does not have the same effect as reading an actual book. I also realize the numerous advantages technology in the classroom possesses as a possible resource for students who may not particularly excel in reading but still would like to experience literature and participate in class activities. Some of the most important things are for a student to be able to think critically, contribute, and ultimately come away from a class knowing that he or she has excelled. If it takes technology to accomplish this goal, then I should definitely be more open to using it in my future classroom.

-Caitlin Colins

 

 
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