Starting from Where the Learner Thrives

A scenario I think about often and am trying to process through writing.

If every student in your class has access to a device and a child’s learning thrives with pen and paper, would you be bothered if that was taken away from them?

If taking away pen and paper from a student who is successful using these things would bother you, would the opposite action upset you as well?

Now, some might say, “Well some kids that would want a device would be distracted by it,” and I could agree with that statement.

The focus should not necessarily the student prefers but, more importantly, what is beneficial to their learning. Those are not always the same.  If I were a kid that had a classroom with flexible seating, I would still prefer the couch, but I know (now) that my learning would be so much better at a high table with a stool.  One would relax me while the other would help me to process and create.  I know what benefits my learning as an adult, and our students would benefit if we worked through this process with them as well.

It is also imperative that we distinguish what we mean by “better for their learning” and not merely relegate that to “do well on a test.” Those are not always the same, but if we are being honest, both are realities.

Whatever student needs to be successful should be where we begin.  If we keep that in the forefront, we will always be on the right path.

“Let’s teach kids the skills and
de-criminalize supports they need to prevail!
They will self regulate their learning
and get what they need BEFORE they fail.”
Shelley Moore

Source: George Couros