Spoke to pre-service teachers this morning, then college faculty (teacher educators) this afternoon. After outlining my grand plan to save the world through creative, rigorous, balanced teaching, a concern came up.
“Many of our teacher candidates want to teach like this, but the administration at the school they are working in has mandated the use of highly scripted teaching materials and programs. They want to know what they can do.”
Tough one. This hasn’t been the case for me (my school has been very supportive of my creative teaching style), and I’m guessing that it won’t be an issue in the future. I would either utilize my now-amplified voice to make change happen, or just find a different district in which to work.
But what was my advice to young teachers without these options? “If you have to, then you have to, at least for the first few years of your career. Make the most of it, be as creative as possible, and find what is good about the curriculum. Learn from it. Once you’ve been there a while, and had some success in your classroom and the community, work to change the system.”
Patience, young grasshoppers. Change takes time.