WHAT IF, It’s Not The “Program”?

This started and continues to be a post about education, but I digress for a bit. (I write this post a day after the tragedy in Orlando, Florida.) What if our role as educators is to instil empathy, love and humanity in our students, first and foremost? What if  our kids learned from our example that hate is the antithesis of acceptance, love and hope?  What if this could make a difference?

As teachers leave the classroom for the summer (and after a post I read by @ChristinaNosek)  I, too, reflect about our roles and interactions with our kids and the programs that often drive our teaching.

WHAT IF we get to know our students and built relationships before we started the “program”?

WHAT IF we saw their strength, not the weaknesses & struggles in our students, before we started the “program” ?

WHAT IF we remembered to make room for the joy and wonder inherent in learning and teaching, before we started the “program”?

WHAT IF we set up our classes with kids in mind and better yet, had them contribute to classroom design, before we started the “program”?

WHAT IF we valued their input, asked questions, listened to their voices and gave them choices before we started the “program”?

WHAT IF we really practiced what we believed, knowing the “program” will fall into place when the time is right for each of our students.

WHAT IF we went back to being teachers of children and not of the “program”?



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6 Responses to WHAT IF, It’s Not The “Program”?

  1. This is an important and a compelling blog….“In the end it will become clearer that there are no
    ‘proven programs,’ just schools in which we find more expert teachers — teachers who need no script to tell them what to do … Are we creating schools in which every year every teacher
    becomes more expert?” Allington 2006, 185).

  2. adunsiger says:

    WHAT IF everything you mentioned here became the program?


    • faige says:

      YES! Wouldn’t that be great. I had already retired when I wrote this as a reflection of the never ending “programs” from reading/writing workshop to Math In Focus (Singapore math which I loved but question the need for a formal program). This is my quandary that I shared with those teachers, admin and districts involved with teaching our children.

      • adunsiger says:

        I feel fortunate to say that in Ontario, with our new Program Document, all of these things are the program. A positive change indeed.


      • faige says:

        So great! And I left the classroom before the “official” math program was implemented and really enjoyed introducing the hands on math activities! My kinders enjoyed this learning process. And the outlier that I had become, I adapted the other programs to meet the needs of my students. Sometimes with more success than others. I read so much innovated learning/teaching coming out of Ontario and some other provinces that my PLN have described.

  3. Pingback: Teaching In The Time Of Chaos | The road traveled

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