Do These Glasses Make Me Look Smart?

book smartWe’ve all probably heard the conversation about being ‘book smart or ‘street smart’, heard others talk about someone ‘having a sixth sense’ or being a ‘people person’.

As a society, we often find ourselves describing people in terms of their strengths or ‘intelligences’.

But, what does it mean to be intelligent? Continue reading

Will Your Parachute Open Every Time?

Teaching Less (2)

Wait a minute!  Teaching less is a good thing?

Let’s be careful in what is actually being said here.  Teaching is an EXCELLENT thing to do.  If we didn’t teach adequately our students would not learn sufficiently.  But, what Grant Wiggins is trying to stress is that FEEDBACK is one of the strongest correlates to student success.  And not just a letter grade or percentage, but critical feedback that helps the student learn from their mistakes so that they can focus on personal improvement.

Nobody gets better by just seeing a ‘B’ on their paper, lab report or report card.  What makes us improve our learning is the opportunity to understand what we didn’t fully succeed at, be given an opportunity to refine our learning and perhaps demonstrate our mastery of the topic again.

I remember sitting in a meeting where we were talking about feedback, student mastery of material and grading.  The speaker asked us to step out from our ‘classroom comfort zone’ and think about … parachute packing.

OK.  Why not?

Continue reading