Wednesday, May 21, 2008
I have been running professional development for teachers for a while now and I was thinking about the four types of teachers I usually work with.
1. The excuse maker
2. The holiday maker
3. The dream maker
4. The change maker
The excuse maker is the teacher who cries, ‘this is the way we’ve always done it’! I have seen these innovations come and I have seen them go, they are just the same old thing with a different name. What I have been doing has worked well enough and I’m not about to change now.
The holiday maker is the teacher who grabs hold of any and every new idea and zealously implements it. Then after a while returns ‘home’ back to business as usual. These teachers do not embed the theory behind the practice and therefore the practice doesn’t stick.
The dream maker is the teacher who understands the theories behind new ideas but does not implement them, doesn't know how to make the dream a reality. This teacher may purport to believing in collaborative structures but this is not evident in their room. This teacher may not be aware that their actions do not back up their beliefs or they just might not know how to align the two.
The change maker is the teacher who successfully aligns their beliefs with their practice. They see the value in new ideas for the learning of their students and set about making changes to their practice based on reflection and research.
These are the teachers I come across in my travels and the ones that I try to help engage with ICT and see its value for their students’ learning. Since I have become aware of these traits within the teachers I can see how to work with teachers more effectively.
Can you see yourself in any of these categories? I know that I can see bits of each of them in myself throughout my time as a teacher. What I want to know now is how to help everyone become a change maker, to make thoughtful changes based on learning needs which embed both theory and practice.
Posted by Jane Nicholls at 11:06 PM