Monday, June 23, 2008

I'm It

Way back in May I was tagged by Louise Maine for the "I believe..." meme started by Barry Bachenheimer.  I've been putting off writing this for quite a while. It's not that I didn't want to write it, it's just that I have a hard time articulating the points that I feel are important in education.  So, as I procrastinate writing up those final report cards, here goes.

I Believe...

  • - every child deserves respect

  • - every child should be valued

  • - every child has strengths that need to be recognized

  • - no one deserves to be told that they can't do something or that they'll never amount to anything

  • - education must be relevant to the learner

  • - assessment needs to be meaningful

  • - students must be given the opportunity to discuss and reflect upon what they are learning

  • - grades should not be used.  as a motivator.  as an end in themselves.

  • - the focus should be on the process, not just the product

  • - learning builds on prior knowledge; it is a teacher's role to uncover that knowledge

  • - our students are diverse so our teaching methods should be too

  • - there is more than one way to demonstrate knowledge

  • - the best education encourages wonder

  • - a good education should empower students with the skills to be able to continue learning about the things that are important to them.

These are just a few of the things that I believe with respect to education.

The Thing About Blog Memes

I'm not a memeticist, but I'm not sure that this is really what Dawkins would call a meme.  I can't help but feel that they are pretty similar to chain letters with the exceptions that

  1. they rarely demand that you tag a required amount of people in a limited amount of time or else...   and

  2. men are just as likely to participate in memes as women--unlike chain letters which seem to be the domain of women and girls

Tag--You're It!

So it is with great trepidation that I tag the following people:
Kevin /dogtrax (Kevin's Meandering Mind)

Sarah Stewart (Sarah's Musings)

My trepidation is they will see this tag as an onerous task to add to their to-do lists.  If it catches your fancy--great, do it (I'm keen to find out what you believe!)  If not, that is ok too.

The Final Word

What do you believe is truly important with respect to education?  Write a post or leave a comment below.  It is an interesting exercise, to be sure!

Image: 'Tag!  You're It!' by Lance and Erin licensed under creative commons attribution, non-comercial, no derivitives works 2.0 generic.


  1. Claire, I love you dearly but.... not another meme!!

    Seriously, I love them because they make you stop and think. I will think about this carefully and get back you, but it won't be for a few days.

  2. I felt the same thing when I was tagged...and hated tagging people as well...but...used the exercise to examine my philosophy and as a result question whether my practices were in line. I like to see what others have to say.

    I watch new memes with my fingers crossed though...

    ...and I usually don't participate in email chain letters. I learned a lot from your post as you are a wonderful blogger (and congrats on the coComment win!)

  3. This is an awesome post, obviously some fairly deep thinking went into it.

  4. @Sarah--sorry. Like I said, feel free to ignore the tag. I was debating not tagging anyone, just leaving it open to those who were interested to take it up. If I get tagged again I think that's what I'll do.

    @Louise,I dreaded writing this post, but it was a really interesting exercise to write down my beliefs. It allowed me to really examine my practice--is it aligned with my beliefs? I think part of my hesitation in writing this post is that education is such a big and important topic, I felt that I was leaving things out or being too brief.


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