Posts by John Hardison
Perhaps the best idea I had for ISTE this year was to arrive in San Diego a day early. It was there, outside of the conference, that I was reminded of a powerful truth in education. Meandering through the meticulously manicured sidewalk shrubbery, the majestically purple Jacaranda trees, and the polite, bayside strollers, I allowed the gentle and cool breeze to nudge me forward ever so slowly under a sunny, cloudless sky. But my steps quickly came to a halt with the sight of an old-school magician whose skin bore witness to the subtle effects of a deceptively hot sun.
Just last week I was fumbling through a cupboard spilling over with drinking glasses and java cups, and I found myself staring at a coffee mug that was given to me many years ago. It reads "The three biggest reasons to teach: June, July, & August." I giggled to myself at the absurdity of the written words. First of all, what happened to three months?
As I sat staring at my son's chicken coop plans that morning and wondering how to make his dream a reality in a covenanted subdivision, I was reminded of a recurring educational topic of discussion this month: "How do we continue students' learning through the summer break?" I was quickly reminded of a tweet quoting Lao Tzu that said, "To lead the people, walk behind them."
I looked up from my grade book and stack of essays one day during my first year teaching to witness my class of thirty students all totally quiet with their books opened to the appropriate page. After all, they had their assignments, so shouldn’t they be quietly reading and ingesting the unbelievably compelling piece of literature before them? Wrong!