Don’t Box Me In

Sometimes I have an idea that I want to share on my blog. Something I read either another blog post or a tweet that gets me thinking. And often times the title doesn’t come till after I start writing . This one came after I started thinking, writing, reflecting and going back over a number of days. I can’t predict how they will go; if I will ramble or get straight to the point. I try to tighten them up right before I hit publish. Sometimes I do and sometimes I forget. I won’t let that “box me in!”

I really understand the concept. I truly understand the idea.  I understand the desire, I understand the passion to teach and learn out of the box. But the reality that at times sets in, is that it is not always possible and it has to be tweaked. So I think about how to tweak something that motivates me but won’t get me in hot water. I still feel that way even though my job description is “substitute” teacher. Whatever role we have in a classroom our driver is what’s best for our students. So many personalities, so many needs, such different learners. How to get to all of them? How to instill the love of learning, the love of wonder in the box (in this case covering the curriculum). There are so many creative and dedicated teachers finding their way to do just that, as they slowly break down the box. I tried to do that with hands on exploration, read alouds that led to incredible discussions that at times created discomfort as we explored our feelings and understanding of the story.  And then there was #geniushour the voice and choice that lead to crushed boxes, literally and figuratively, (dare I say that). When we teach out of the box we look to disrupt, gather information, create knowledge and make our own path that feeds our passions and in turn empowers our students to do the same. So I thought of this post from @gcouros on Learner-Centered Design .

When we talk about meeting our students’ needs, I learn more and more what that looks like. How do you see the “box” in your classrooms?


I had an opportunity to work in a classroom where I saw these anchor charts. Buildings were created by some boys and girls working together to make a safe place for a family of animals.

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