I am reminded of how our students feel every year. Inservice days mimic a student’s school day and they are awful. Sit, pay attention, resist distractions, and wait. By the end of the day, I am exhausted and uncomfortable. I could not do that day after day.
There are students who can handle the physical aspect of sitting at school fine. Others simply cannot. There are plenty of students who need physical activity at least once every day.
Then there is what they spend all day learning.
The teacher picks the topics and assignments for the class. Even the ‘creative’ projects need to fit within the teacher-created box. The standards that the teachers are trying to cover are relentless for the students too. What is worse: kids have many classes like this per day.
It is no wonder that most students have adopted a “just tell me what to do” attitude towards their education. They need it just to get through their day. I don’t blame them for having that attitude.
At this point, it is important to point out that I am painting with a very broad brush. There are so many settings and students who do not fit the descriptions here. A number of every class is hardworking, intelligent, and unique. These kids get the most from the classes at school and are great students. Nonetheless, maker education will still challenge these students in new, different ways.
Well-done maker education needs to help all students, not just the best and brightest. If it leaves behind the kids who are already behind, it isn’t a well-done program. I’m working really hard to create a well-done program.