I am a boring teacher.

YEAH! I am Boring – – -> with a CAPITAL “B”

I am consistent, my classes are based on routines and forward planning. I have homework routines and set repercussions if it is not done on time (ie: do it). I have high expectations of behaviour and again have a known system of discipline that is positive (community service and restorative justice).

Community service diary stamp

My subject area allows for some fun, like; group work, project tasks, open-ended research. . . my students engage in a variety of work activities and have a chance to choose their learning paths. Students get opportunities to explore and play with different materials, experiment, make mistakes and draw their own conclusions.

. . .making products of of non-tradition/recycled materials

Optional extended task: Tech Deck Skate Ramp

Students know what is expected of them. High school and adolescence is a tough time for most students- tougher for some! We should be making classtime as EASY AS POSSIBLE, especially in early transition years like year 7. They come from a primary learning environment where they are in their own space, with the security of a only a few teachers. High school is much harder! 8-9 classes, more than one glass group, 8-9 teachers- all possibly with different expectations, systems and routines, books, homework/assessment. THEN throw in the differing technological tools that each faculty, subject area and teacher uses. . . TOO HARD!

Projects based on traditional skills, tools and techniques.

Organised workspaces. . .

The other reason as to why I call myself a boring teacher is that I keep technology use SOOOOOO simple. I work in a school where 7-11 are 1:1 with macbooks, but I have chosen to limit the breadth of tools and applications that I use. I want students to EMERSE THEMSELVES IN CONTENT, NOT GET LOST IN THE TOOL!

I LOVE TECHNOLOGY!! I LOVE HOW IT IS CHANGING THE WAY WE DO THINGS BOTH IN INDUSTRY AND CLASSROOMS!!

CNC Router

BUT, SERIOUSLY? ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!

Right now, make a mental  list of all the differing technology tools, subscription sites, programs, apps etc that you have once used in your classroom . . . . heres mine from 2011: (NOTE: I am NOT talking about sites used for information gathering or research)

 

THAT’S IT!! . . . . BORING!!

Now zip back through your list and select ones that were multifunctional, intuitive or maybe cross-curricular. THEY ARE THE ONLY FEW YOU SHOULD BE USING?!

I make a conscious decision to ONLY introduce tools and technology into my classroom that are RELEVANT, FLEXIBLE and manageable within my class time frame and curriculum, again, Students should be EXPERTS IN CONTENT, NOT GET LOST IN THE TECHNOLOGY!  

The list that I have PLAYED AROUND WITH to get to the refined one above is endless!! . . . all the usernames, accounts and such I have signed up for to trial new online tools and programs is RIDICULOUS. Do you feel the same??

At the moment I feel like I am wading through countless options of resources, websites, online tools and products that may be very effective or not very worthwhile. I JUST WANT TO KEEP IT SIMPLE and use technologies/tools that students can use in the REAL world, or teach them real world skills. Do you feel the same??

Dont get me wrong, I love that teachers are exploring ways to modernise content and engage students, we cant be stagnant when technology is moving so rapidly. But LETS NOT USE TECHNOLOGY FOR THE SAKE OF IT. BE CHOOSY. I am not an entertainer, I still have content to teach!! Do you agree?

My pick for the lastest educational trend for 2012 . . . .BORING IS THE NEW BLACK . .

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2 thoughts on “I am a boring teacher.

  1. Interesting read Monique. I’m still mulling over my thoughts on this. Whilst I do not feel educators need to entertainers, “entertaining” is engaging. Boring may not lead to agitation. I am not suggesting we need to entertain 100%, there is a balance. As a race we need to also practice self control and focus. It has been proven that an audiences attention is captivated within the first few minutes of a movie or presentation. So therefore as facilitators of learning we don’t want to be boring. Compared to most educators, I don’t think your teaching style is boring. I believe you are by nature an engaging personality. So in comparison to others, you are not boring. Your list may be limited in your view, but it is not boring. I understand your sentiment- curriculum dictates content delivery more often than not, especially in terms of coverage. Maybe you need to separate the teacher “manager” Monique (rolls, admin, playground behaviour management) to the facilitator of learning ms Dali?  Self perception varies from student and collegue perception. Most would view you as an inspiring and motivated educator and that is not boring! I agree with  your message that we should not be using ANY resource for the sake of usage itself.  I see our role in providing a path for students. A path that leads them to the potential of vast tools available.  Paths that may be handy for one but not another, but in the variety of paths they find an effective road to their own journey of learning. 

    @7mrsjames

    • I really value your opinion Jeanette because we have such different view-points 🙂

      Totally agree that engagement and enjoyment has an affect on student participation- but my point is that if we keep what we do simple (in ICT), if technology is used appropriately and SELECTIVELY then students may find its integration easier.

      I love that you pointed out teacher/manager roles- with the pressures of the manager aspects of our role I do sometimes find it dictates my students learning path AND my teaching. . .

      I am definitely using the word “boring” in a cheeky way 🙂 I know my classes aren’t (and I am very lucky that I teach in TAS where students are engaged in making and doing). However, I do have a strong viewpoint that technology integration SHOULD NOT over shadow content. Learning is our core reason for doing what we do. I just find when I keep it (technology) simple, consistent, repetitive – learning happens!!

      Thank you for making me think and reflect WAY too hard in the holidays 🙂

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