Thursday, October 27, 2011

Blog Post #10

candle litDo We Teach or Do We Educate?
Why did I become a teacher and why am I renewing my certificate? It's very simple. I made a decision to study education in 1984 because I wanted to make a difference in the lives of young people. I felt like I had the ability help children learn, grow in confidence, and become good citizens. I absolutely felt it was "my calling." I am renewing my certificate after being out of the classroom for 17 years for exactly the same reasons. The fire to teach was never completely extinguished and has recently been "fanned" through my experience in recertification. That is, I want to make a difference in the lives of young people through example, hard work, determination, and kindness.
 I'm sure that there will be some "teaching" in my classroom but hopefully it will be overwhelmed by "education." That is, I will take responsibility for my students and inspire them to "want to learn." I will never give up on any student. I will set high goals and be creative with the process of education. I will change lessons or even myself to better educate my students. I will use technology and keep lessons fun and engaging. I personally can't wait to return to the classroom in order to provide some "education."

pencilsDon't Let Your Students Take Their pencils Home!
     I can picture Tom Johnson throwing his hands into the air saying, "Pencils? Really?" At least that is what he should've done. This satirical story revolves around the narrow-minded thinking that teachers can get caught up in. Teachers sometimes lose sight of their purpose. This post is  embedded with fictional hyperbole to show how ridiculous it is when small bits of information can be used and overblown. This ultimately hurts students and the educational process. It reminds me to keep perspective , reason, and common sense in the classroom and to avoid getting bogged down by the bureaucracy of test scores and small things like pencils and many, many other things that can cloud the mind and purpose of a teacher.
pencils     The administrator in this post was "accepting the path" that had been laid out for her and her students.
The teacher, on the other hand, was keeping his mind open (and trying to reopen hers) to the real goal of education.
     After exploring the site, I realized that "pencils" are a symbol of all the things that we are not letting our children use and explore. Technology is one thing that has  so much misinformation surrounding it. The misinformation is used to squelch its use.
     This was clever post and very thought provoking.


  1. A better term is metaphor rather than symbol. I think Johnson was primarily interested in the metaphor of pencils/computers but it is appropriate to argue technology in general. Close, but you got the metaphor. Many of your classmates did not. So your assignment is the Got the Metaphor Assignment. I am also including the Missed the Metaphor Assignment since I hope you will want to explore the posts that are in it.

    Got the Metaphor Assignment

    Special Assignment #1

    Write a post about why we use metaphors. Give examples in history and literature and even EDM310. Due Sunday November 20, 2011.

    Missed the Metaphor Assignment

    Additional Assignment: Read these three posts:

    1. Metaphors: What They Are and Why We Use Them

    In that post there is a Special Assignment. Do that assignment in a new post which is Additional Post #1. It does NOT substitute for Blog Post #14 as it did in the Spring semester.

    Due midnight Sunday November 20, 2011.

    2. Metaphor Discussion Update

    3. Jennifer Asked: Why Use Metaphors? Here is My Answer

    4. For more information also see:
    You Missed the Point! It's Not A Pencil…"

  2. Tricia,
    I always enjoy reading your posts because your passion for not only being a teacher, but a teacher who makes a difference in her student's lives, really shows through. No doubt you have found your calling! You will be the type of teacher that when students later recall those who most influenced them, they will think of your class.

  3. Hello Tricia,

    First off, great post. Congratulations for getting the metaphor in Tom Johnson's blog. Also, I'm glad to see that your fire is still burning for a return to teaching. From your experience as a teacher, what are good ways to inspire students to want to learn?