” “We don’t know what we are supposed to be doing, but we are learning about math,” Thea Burnett, 6, said.”
If that’s the way an article starts about a new experimental method of teaching… perhaps not a good sign?
Basically the idea is having a large, open classroom with a group of teachers that continue with the class every year from first through fifth grade. Although there are 50-60 students in a classroom, the actual student to teacher ratio is quite low (four teachers). The emphasis here is collaboration.
I have mixed thoughts on collaboration. Teaching groupwork is good, but I think it’s better to teach students how to think and act for themselves, without constantly expecting someone to play a certain role. I think independently, you can discover a lot about yourself that you wouldn’t necessarily know if you’re constantly on a team.
I like classrooms because of the fun and creativity and socializing and “street” lessons you learn. But for everything? I don’t know.
“The school stresses student independence over teacher-led lessons, scientific inquiry over rote memorization and freedom and self-expression over strict structure and discipline.”
Wow. I definitely don’t see why this school is touting one over the other; as if one is bad. There is a time for everything, and emphasizing or overemphasizing certain ideas at certain times may actually impinge on development. It’s not about producing the world’s most intelligent mammals, it’s about nurturing global citizens.
We’ll see how it turns out. Yikes. Poor teachers.