My apparent willingness to 1. critique our education system and 2. share my aspirations of how I think we should be approaching teaching and learning can often be a scary and lonely experience. I am constantly aware of the potential for it to expose me to criticism. One of the criticisms that I have been expecting to hear is that the approach I am advocating for is only relevant to new entrants. That it has no relevance to older children.
This criticism could not be further from the truth. I think the benefits of creating a flexible teaching environment that fits around the needs of the children, rather than expecting the children to fit into the needs of a rigid system, are enormous for all children, of all ages. Unfortunately, I am advocating for something that I am not sure we can, in all honesty, create. That’s because our education system is a reflection of our society. Of who we are and what we value. Too often I see signs of ‘deficit thinking’ and economic inequality; things that will make it difficult to achieve any significant progress. Our education system needs more than mere tinkering around the edges.
So I have a request of you, the reader. Please come to this site with an open mind. Please come with a desire to look at our education system within the wider context of how our society operates. Please come prepared to ‘connect the dots’.
Unfortunately, a series of individual blog posts will never be sufficient in allowing me to fully convey my profoundly earnest and honest intentions. My sole focus is on improving education outcomes for my students. Be reassured that I am simply applying widely available research, into a classroom setting; within the bounds of the very generous NZ Curriculum.
My hope is that one day a clever person from the university will see merit in what I am doing and help me document these personal observations and reflections and allow me to share them with a wider audience. In the meanwhile, I will continue to put the feelings of fear and loneliness to one side. I will endeavour to remain optimistic in spirit, despite often being pessimistic in intellect.
Ease Education: Teaching at a human scale.