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12 October 2004: Will This be on the Test? (Epilogue)

After discussing this with a very trusted colleague and friend, she reminded me what it was like to be a teacher and a student at the same time. I admit, my comments are unsympathetic to that exhausting existence.

Probably much as one subconciously chooses to forget images of war or experiences of severe trama, I have forgotten the struggle to teach and learn on the same day: teaching all day, planning all afternoon and studying or attending class all night until it's time to sleep so that you can do it all again tomorrow.

So, my colleage asks, is it any wonder these young teachers just want the key to passing tests? Can we really demand that they participate in learning new ways to do something they spent their entire day trying to do?

My unsympathetic answer is YES. Yes, new teachers should be completely and totally dedicated to learning their craft for one simple reason: good teaching is almost always less labor intensive for the teacher. So, new teachers drowning in grading, reading, and test prep should be clamoring for good methods instruction. Grab your backpack, fill your water bottle and scarf down that burrito because the sooner you master good teaching strategies, the sooner your schedule will free up, leaving plenty of time to study for the RICA.

teaching quote of the day

Tell me and I forget. Show me and I remember. Involve me and I understand.

- Chinese proverb

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