Wisdom Begins with Wonder

Make time for one-on-one conversations

This is one of those that I must constantly remind myself about!

Today, my students were working mostly independently on a research project. I spent the entire class period rotating between my students. I sat down and talked to every single student in each class today.

I don’t do this nearly as often as I should. Every time I do, the conversation is incredibly valuable for both of us on many levels:

  • I learn more about each student as a person
  • I learn more about each student as a learner
  • I correct important misconceptions
  • I give valuable feedback to students about their learning
  • I receive valuable feedback from students about my teaching
  • I improve my relationships with the people whom I am privileged to teach
  • My reasons for loving teaching are reaffirmed

Even though today was not a perfect day in my classroom, it was an important one.



3 comments ↓

  • #   Hilary Thames on 11.19.13 at 6:52 am     

    And why couldn’t I have had a teacher like you? A round of applause for being a GREAT teacher! I personally believe that best thing for a student is to have a good relationship with his/her teacher, and by having one on one conversations with each student, they gain trust. Once a student has placed their trust in you, there are so many doors you are now able to open with them! Again, I admire you for actually caring about your students!


  • #   Kevin Reeseq on 02.07.14 at 12:35 pm     

    Mr. Rice, I am with EDM310 at the University of South Alabama, majoring in elementary education. I’m commenting on your posts as an assignment, but I find that you make some great headway in education on your blog posts. From this post, I see it is easy to get a little complacent in the teaching profession, but that an event like the research paper reminds you of the whole of what you are doing. I think that knowing the student’s was probably one thing I was concerned about, but now that I know of one technique to achieve this, a little less anxiety exists for me in that area. Research papers are never easy, so it really seems like an engaging time to become familiar with those you teach. I know the student’s appreciated having that one-on-one interaction, and that you have a stronger classroom environment as a result of reaffirming to them their importance to you. I guess it had to be a little rough in your class to get the ball rolling, but the insight you gained from one “bad day” is worth ten “good days.” I’m glad you got so much out of it and adding the experience to your classroom more often in the future 


  • #   Mr. Rice on 02.21.14 at 3:06 pm     

    Kevin,

    This was not a “bad day” by any means. In fact, it was a great day! When I said it wasn’t a perfect day, I was acknowledging that I am not a perfect teacher and that some of my kids were certainly off task when I was sitting and talking to other students.

    That being said, we can’t be afraid of having students be off task if that fear prevents us from having important conversations!


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