Tag Archives: Students

Not Just a Game: Kids on The Value of Chess in Education


  As you no doubt know, constant reader (because I have gone on about it enough), I teach a chess class as an elective part of our Grade 9 curriculum. This year, as part of their final exam I asked … Continue reading

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The Kind of Kid I Prefer to Teach


I don't care about how well you do in your tests and exams. I don't care about how much time / money / effort you put into your assignments. I don't care about how well-behaved you are, or how well … Continue reading

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Woot! Let’s Play! (Leveling-Up Education Though Gamification)


Let’s play a game… (Note: Please see my next post on ClassCraft for the best tool there is to gamify your classroom!) Here is your character:

Posted in Awesomeness, EDUCATION, Games, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

25 Questions Every 21st Century Student Should Be Able to Answer


  What is the value of creativity? How do I evaluate the reliability of a website? How do I stay safe online? Why is metacognition important? How do I learn most effectively? How do I create an engaging presentation? How … Continue reading

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Are you Paying Attention? (The Three Minute Test)


I don’t know who developed this originally, but I’ve always loved it…

Posted in EDUCATION | Tagged , ,

A Very Academic Problem


The Teachers vs The Greeks Teachers: Please stop using the word ‘academic’. You don’t know what it means. When you say things like “this is an academic school”, or “we need to lift our academic standards”, or even “I am … Continue reading

Posted in Advice, Critical Thinking, Philosophy, Vitriol | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

50 Things Every Teacher Needs


50 Things Every Teacher Needs 1. Wet wipes. 2. A sense of humour.

Posted in EDUCATION, Life | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why I Teach (Part 1)


I teach to see the lights go on behind young people’s eyes when they discover something new about the world.

I teach to awaken them to what they can really do if they try.

I teach to show them that there isn’t always an easy solution, and that appreciating ambiguity and uncertainty is often worth more than easy answers… Continue reading

Posted in Critical Thinking, EDUCATION, General, Life, Self-edification | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Reboot Diary: 15 Things I Took Away From #30GoalsEdu 2013


Wednesday 10 July 2013: Jazz and Strange Dinner Guests One of the many strange things about being a teacher is that your job and your life eventually become intertwined. You simply cannot leave work at work because there is always … Continue reading

Posted in Critical Thinking, EDUCATION, Self-edification | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Dear Class of 2012


You will not remember how your confidence in yourselves was nurtured. You will not remember how you learnt to overcome your own self-imposed limitations. You will not remember how you were motivated to go out and conquer the world… or at least to make some small change for the good. You will not remember these things because they did not happen. I did not allow them to happen. Continue reading

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How Can You Teach If You Don’t Learn? (27 Things Teachers Can Learn About Students by Changing Roles.)


Nothing Like A MOOC. As I write this, I am finishing my first MOOC, titled ‘Think Again: How to Reason and Argue’*. The triumphs and failures I have experienced in this course have taught me a career-refreshing lesson about what … Continue reading

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The Titan Imperative: A Young Man Discovers His Own Brilliance (And Inspires His Teacher).


The following passages are excerpted from a website created by a young man called Titan, whom I met in one of my Grade 8 Computer classes in 2012. As you read through his thoughts and reflections on what he learnt this year, you will be struck at how much he has to say about me. I am humbled and inspired by his kind words. But look a little beyond his generous compliments, and you will see that what he has actually discovered is his own brilliance. Titan truly did live up to his name this year. All I did was challenge him to do so. Continue reading

Posted in Critical Thinking, EDUCATION, Social Media, Technology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

On The Mozart Effect, Learning Styles, Karma and Other Things I Wish Were True


Theories of differing intelligence types and learning styles are still valid, even if we don’t quite know how to leverage them effectively just yet. Every school is different, every teacher is different, every student is different. And all of these factors, plus thousands more combine in different ways for each individual child. We are hardly any closer to cracking the genome of an effective education if we discredit a small part of the sequence. We should not abandon a methodology that ‘has no measurable effect’, we should just think of ways to do it more effectively. Continue reading

Posted in Critical Thinking, EDUCATION | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

20 Reasons Why (Some) Teachers Are What’s Wrong With Education


Some teachers are what is wrong with the system. They blame everyone else for the problems in modern-day schools: students, parents, school leaders and the government – but very seldom do they turn the bright lamp of accusation on themselves. … Continue reading

Posted in EDUCATION | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

20 Ways to do School Better: A Guide for Students


  20 WAYS TO DO SCHOOL BETTER: A GUIDE FOR STUDENTS 1. Don’t be in too much of a rush to grow up. Enjoy being immature and irresponsible while you can. It’s important to play and have as much childish, … Continue reading

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10 Potentially Great Things About Bad Teachers


Great teachers make an impact. They care about each and every individual in their class, and strive to make the learning experience fun, relevant and meaningful. But having only great teachers in a school could deprive students of some important … Continue reading

Posted in EDUCATION, Humour | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Students to Teachers (Part 2): Education is Supposed to Produce Independent Thinkers, Not Answering Machines.


This is the second in the series of letters to teachers from students. This time, a young man in Grade 12 talks about how we are missing the point of education by obsessing about marks and assessments. He insists that his … Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Critical Thinking, EDUCATION, South Africa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Boys On Their Own, Or Why Schools are Failing Boys


Here’s a statistic that shouldn’t be: teenage boys are three to four times more likely to take their own lives than girls are. Granted, the research is in its infancy, and most of it is coming out of the United … Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Brains, EDUCATION, Teaching boys | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments