This terrific posting (April 9) really hit home with me. Jonathan Kallay has hit the nail on the head-- I've been wracking my brain, trying to put to words the value of relationship building, leadership, and artful teaching. Kalley writes:
"Some people, particularly those who describe themselves as being 'critical of progressive education,' seem to have a mistaken view of teaching a a purely technical 'imparting of knowledge.' Not understanding the true challenge of teaching, they see student-centered teaching as examples of 'eduquackery,' a left-wing conspiracy to indoctrinate children with political correctness and siphon funding into nonsensical research, and a dangerous departure from time-honored, 'logically perfect' curricula and direct instruction. They trivialize reform as attempts to make school 'more fun', not understanding that these are the only ways we can think of to overcome students' behavior as a subject people.They don't understand that good teaching, like good leadership, is not about manipulating people into doing things our way. It is about inspiring them to want what we want, and to be willing to sacrifice in order to get it. "
When I read the various (and interesting) hardliners on the internet, I am always "yelling" questions at them, demanding they look just beyond their current point of view to what teaching really is!
Thank you J. Kalley. I will sleep better tonight. Well, wait, now I want to put to words how anti-progressives have helped my teaching. Ahhh, a challenge for another day.