Teacher’s should create Learners, not Students

I started my search on Google. I used the term “elementary school teacher” then I refined my search to only include blogs. As I began to go through and explore everything that came up, I hit the third page and a blog title caught my attention. The title was A conversation about teaching preparation by. Robert Talbert.

In this article he speaks to his a conversation he had with his 8 year old daughter about becoming a teacher. I found myself astounded by the ending of the conversation. As was Mr. Talbert, apparently. He was asked if he, as a college professor, was he ever asked to practice teaching adults. He responded to his daughter with a simple um…no. However, he was intrigued by the concept. He just blogged about the conversation itself and then asked for comments from others. He never really gave his own opinion on the matter in his blog just more, food for thought. I was super interested in this idea that as you go up the grades and into higher education, the less you are required to actually KNOW HOW to teach. That to me was something that stood out and made me look at other posts he had on Casting out the Nines, which is a blog on The Chronicle.

That lead me to another blog titled We need to produce learners, not just students and This article really spoke to me because I completely agreed with Prof. Talbert’s main point. He said,

 For me, the main purpose of higher education is to train students on how to be learners— people who take initiative for learning things, who are skilled in learning new things, and who above all want to learn new things. My goal as an instructor is to make sure that every student in my class makes some form of incremental improvement in having the dispositions and skills attendant with successful lifelong learning. I care about this a lot more than I care about covering this or that particular content topic in a course.

I definitely feel that he is so right. Your GPA means nothing if you never gasped the material that was taught and don’t posses the skills needed in your chosen profession. This is a concept that I agree with and feel should be expressed to not only teachers but students as well. We need to create students that want to learn and not just try to “get through the class”. Students that take the initiative to explore on their own and are interested in what they are learning.   As a future education teacher for grades 1 to 6, I feel that at the age in a child development, although the student will need all of guidance, to allow them to explore and discover things on their own we can create a generation of learners rather than just students.

He goes on to explain how he achieves this in his own classroom . Using 4 simple steps he got from  Paul Pintrich. He states,

  1. Learners are active participants in the learning process.
  2. Learners have the option to monitor and control their thinking and motivations for learning.
  3. Learners have a standard against which comparisons can be made to decide whether their learning is going fine or needs to change.
  4. Learners are mediators between their own personal learning characteristics and their achievement.


Pintrich called this concept a Self-regulated learning model. On a higher education level of education this model would work amazingly well ,however, in an elementary school setting things would need to be more structured in order for this to be effective. I am see a lot of his blogs being helpful to me in my path on being a teacher. Learning from other teachers and network sharing on how to teach things are so beneficial and I was very interested in a lot of the topics he brought up. Absolutely would love to continue to follow him and his work.

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, No, it’s a Physical Educator !

I am a physical educator, part of brother(sister)hood of people who are fighting for our professional careers and who are on the front lines of the war on obesity.  I say we are fighting for our profession because in so many schools around the nation budget cuts are eliminating physical education classes.  Many education boards have deemed gym class as expendable; a non-relevant subject that our children can do without.  Boy, are they wrong.

I don’t need to go on about the obesity crisis in our country.  We see it everyday when we go to the mall, ride the subway, or pass a McDonald’s restaurant.  We see morbidly obese people that continue their unhealthy lifestyles and are blissfully ignorant about the serious health implications that will occur in the near future.  These people pass down unhealthy habits from generation to generation as the vicious cycle continues.

So, who can we call on to save our country?  Superman? Spider-man? Wonder-woman? No, we need PHYSICAL EDUCATORS!! And we need to stick together to win this fight!

I have always tried to make connections and network with people in my field but until now I have never used the instrument of the Internet as a networking tool.  Here’s what I have found so far:

Top 50 Physical Educators on Twitter – I have browsed through all these accounts and they are full of great ideas from great people all around the world.  These people are motivated and are passionate about physical education, exercise, and youth sports. I have followed them all and hope to engage in conversation and exchange ideas.

@NTAAHPERD – found this organization on Twitter.  AAHPERD is the largest organization of professionals involved in physical education, recreation, fitness, dance, and health education.

@NASPE – The National Association of Sport and Physical Education is the national authority.  This organization sets standards that all P.E. teachers must follow and adhere to.

@PEgeeks– A collaboration of ideas and resources from PE teachers throughout the world, aimed at engaging learners & raising standards #TogetherWeAreStronger #pegeeks
This is a great new organization that I just found on Twitter, reading stuff like this gives me chills and makes me proud to be a physical educator.


The search for the Physical Edcation Network

This picture has little to do with my post but guess what? it’s awesome. And so are you!

When first set with the task of finding a network of physical education bloggers i thougt to myself “who blogs about physical education?”. I quickly found that the answer to this question was with another question “who doesn’t?”

So I decided to give it the ole college try and keyword searched “sports education” and narrowed my search to blogs. In doing this I came across a blog entitled All Things Physical Education & Sports Coaching by Dylan Blain. Blain’s posts focus primarily on the infusion of technology into the PE setting. When first introduced to the concept of becoming a better educator by incorporating technology I initially believed that I would be at a disadvantage teaching PE. In many instances technology is used to make a stagnant class more engaging, but what can be more engaging then chasing an opponent up and down a basketball court? One particular post that caught my eye was one entitled What’s your REACTION with the iPod Touch?

The post goes on to describe how the sportscam app on the I-phone can be used as a tool for measuring reaction time to various stimulus. A very well thought out and executed lesson.

Access to this page also lead me to click a link to Mr Robbo. This page gave me even more information on different types of technologies that can be used in PE. With access to these networks I feel I will be better able to utilize technology in the PE setting and I encourage others to check them out