The most amazing inventions were made because of human laziness. Think of the washing machine and the dish washer. They allow us to save so much time which we can spend on more interesting and useful things. For me, being lazy is not a sin, it is a blessing. A lot of teachers I know tell me that they are ashamed of their laziness to write lesson plans. But in my ESL workshops I tell everyone – Hey, it’s OK to be lazy, as long as you still enjoy doing your job.
Laziness thrives where we have to do a lot of routine work such as writing plans, finding teaching materials, checking students’ tests and written assignments and so on. This is where we really need an invention that would allow us to concentrate on something not quite so boring. So what are the things that make you so bored when you have to write a lesson plan?
Let’s start with finding ideas for the upcoming class. Is there any way to avoid doing it? Yes, there is, so make sure to read this article to the end where I will tell you exactly what it is. Now let’s say you have pinpointed your teaching goals, and need to develop exercises that would hit the nails. Where are you going to get those? I’m going to tell you exactly where, but a little bit later. Right now, though, we need to focus on the ways of killing all birds with one stone. Still have no clue what I am talking about?
I am talking about THE INVENTION – something which will make your laziness legitimate. If you are lazy to think of ideas for your ESL class, you have all the right in the world to do that. Now the question is how you are going to do it without compromising yourself? If you have this magic pill, after swallowing which you become ready for any class, how are you going to hide the truth from your students? What if they find out that their teacher is a cheater?
In fact, if students have fun during your class while receiving tons of knowledge, the last think they will question is how you managed to make them happy: whether it took you two minutes and a couple of mouse clicks, or four lengthy hours of scrupulous work. Their shining faces and the words of gratitude will be your reward. Who cares how you did it? When you put on clean clothes and enjoy their cleanness, the last thing you want to do is question the technology of a washing machine.
Source by Alexander Golishev
If teachers do not know at least ten methods of how to multiply, they should not be teaching multiplication to more than nine students. It's easy and important to understand multiplication in depth if you are entrusted to teach it to young minds.
And that does not mean "tricks." Tricks trivialize anything they are attached to. How can I say this? Because I am a professional magician. We (at least the good ones) hate "tricks". One thing all magicians know, is that as soon as you teach the trick, the magic is gone . It takes all the appreciation out of the effect.
A thought magician would never show anyone how to do anything until they are ready to appreciate the thought and effort behind it.
One of the dangers of teaching tricks is that you, as the teacher, might actually think that you are seeing a light bulb go off when the child says, "Oh, I get it!" But that is the same false light bulb that we magicians see every time a person says "Oh, I see how he did it now!" when someone tells him how a particular magic effect is done. They only know the most superior part of the method. They can not actually do the effect to any worthy degree, they only "know how it's done!"
It's like the hip jazz musician who meets the suburban musician, and says about him, "Yeah man, that cat knows where it's at , too bad he does not know what it is ."
The same goes for teaching multiplication. You must teach the reasons that the method works. If the child is not ready to understand the reason, s / he is not ready to use the trick. In other words, it should not be a trivial trick – it should be a meaningfulful method.
How do you do this?
You have to get to know the child , and where s / he is with math so far. What so many pedagoges forget, is that education is about the student, not about the material (or the damned curriculum) . If the child struggles with addition, take a step back and cover that until the child understands it in his bones before you try to teach him multiplication.
It does not matter that you have to cover curriculum. It does not matter that you are "on the multiplication unit" in school at this point. Clearly the pupil is not . You are a teacher, you know this. The administrators do not, I know, I know . This is a problem. You can please them, or you can teach math. You can not do both. If you can not fight a bad system that you're in, you are the system.
So you figure out if the child is ready to learn what you plan to teach them. If they struggle with "the tables," and you are about to teach them the standard algorithm, you must get them up to speed until the real light bulbs goes off in their heads – until they understand that "times" (with whole numbers) means "groups of". Have you explained that to them well enough? Do you understand it yourself?
It does not matter which of the typical methods are taught in schools if they are going to be taught as "tricks" or taught as "show-and-tell" of "how to do it." None of them will have any meaning.
And by means, I do not mean, "grades went up." You can get great grades with "tricks." It makes teachers' work easier. But it does not teach anything valuable in the long run. If you teach for understanding, you get lasting value. If you teach with tricks and games, you are teaching that math is only good if it is not about the math. Great lesson, huh?
Education is not about inculcation of any algorithm. It is about students gaining insight, knowledge and lasting value. You can not do that with "just shut up and learn this method," just as you can not do it with, "I'll shut up and let you teach yourself." Those are the ultimate false dichotomy in education of our time.
If you're a teacher, you're probably fed up with the bad mojo from the policy-makers.
Source by Brian Foley
Study after study shows that TV is bad for our kids. We've heard that screen time puts kids in a trance, makes them fat, and even makes them depressed. So, there are educational videos that are great, but should the kids watch them? When do you use videos while educating your kids? Should you use videos at all?
I have not read any studies on whether or not kids can learn from videos, but I have plenty of anecdotal evidence in my house. My kids and I do learn from educational videos and shows.
My daughter is into dinosaurs. She reads most dinosaur books she comes across and she watches every dinosaur show she finds on television. A most common type of phrase I hear from her is, "Oh, that's how that works. So, for my daughter, documentaries help refine her knowledge.
My son is not the best reader yet, and he does not read for fun. He will sit down and watch NOVA, Discovery, and History channel shows with me. A few months ago I checked out a documentary from the library on Sparta, the ancient Greek city-state. Several days later he told me how Spartan warriors fought.
I watched a Discovery Channel DVD a few nights ago called Inside Planet Earth . I learned things I did not know before, like current theory states the century of the earth has zero gravity and there's more likely biomass in the earth's crust than there is on top of it.
Even though I'm convinced educational videos can be useful to a child's education, I have a few guidelines that I use in deciding if the kids can have a particular screen time.
1. Sometimes animations can explain a topic much better than a verbal or written description, or even pictures. So, if a topic is complex and the video has a good animation in it, I'll give it a try.
2. If the documentary is from NOVA, the Discovery Channel, or the History Channel, I consider it.
3. If the children have read a lot of the topic and are tired of reading, videos are a nice break. The videos also give the children a chance to learn how to take notes, as if they were in a lecture.
4. I watch the videos with my kids. When something interesting, complex, or controversial is talking about on the show, I hit pause and the kids and I talk about whatever it was.
5. I talk about the videos with the kids after watching them. Sometimes I get my husband to talk about the videos and / or topics also.
Source by Gwen Nicodemus
Softball coaches must be armed with the knowledge and the desire for softball game in order to fully optimize their try out drills and plans. A coach must be realistic about the qualities to be looked for in a player who wants to try out in the softball game. The establishment of softball tryout plans and programs is a very essential formula in solving the problem of selecting the next best softball player.
A strategy that should be taken into consideration by the softball coaches when conducting try outs is the preparation of the selection template. The selection template must consist of the requirements in building the softball team. The template helps you decide which player has to stay and which player has to go. It also helps in helping the trainee to become more equipped with the proper and more knowledge about softball playing over the top.
First of all, learn how to build your team. What should be the limit number of players should you take? Team building is basically where all winning moments start. It is where the players are being motivated to do the best softball practice and drills that they can. Make sure also that those softball players who comprises the team should be reliable and dedicated in making practice drills and plans.
The ideas, plans, and softball drills should all be documented. It helps a lot when you put into writing the things that you should be taking consideration of. Most softball team coaches lose games because they cannot evaluate well their players since there is no documentation of the players’ performances before, during and after the softball game.
The selection outline should consist of fact-based decisions of the other team members. List all the names of the tryout players. Decide on the most important criteria for your team. Set a scoring range for every tryout player. You can base your criteria on the player’s skills and positions, attitude and coach ability and athleticism and potential.
In trying to select a tryout player, make sure that fair and just judgment is given. Give players a balanced second chance if at first they are very much nervous in the tryout. It is very important to evaluate them over and over again because some players have the tendency of surprising you with their great and distinct softball techniques.
Softball coaching is a challenging task. The selection of the softball tryout players alone can definitely give you a great demand of time and effort. But if everything is well set and documented in the selection outline, everything will fall into its proper places.
Source by Marc Dagenais