Teaching the creativity out of studentsPosted: February 6, 2012
We had a great conversation today about long term and short term learning goals. Some of us framed long term learning as unit goals, others as end of grade learning. A few even wondered about long term goals being defined in lifetime terms. It was a pretty interesting couple of minutes of conversation connecting short term goals to long term goals.
When we broke down some of short term writing goals it became clear to some that these just weren’t fun. While they may have been convenient to assess, they certainly couldn’t be fun for the student. Of course these were just samples and a skilled teacher can do wonders, even with the driest of expectations.
Students come to us as natural storytellers and writers. As a long term goal, that’s what I want these students to become. Looking at some of the expectations presented as learning outcomes seemed to do very little to promote the joy of writing.
It’s the difference between the art and the science of teaching. I think we have to keep some of those really long term goals in mind during our planning. It seems a bit short sighted just to plan for the end of a unit or even the end of the grade. Perhaps we need a few 20 year goals to remind us of the bigger picture.