Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Rigorous Life

Being locked up in school for the past 3 days, I've had some time to think about things because those darned presenters keep making us work.  Today's whole discussion was about RIGOR.  How can we add more rigor?  What is rigor?  What do you see in a classroom that is rigorous?  Every year has a catch word or phrase and this is this year's.

Today's presenter had a chart, because that's what people do when they talk to teachers, they have charts.  It's a circle divided into 4 and in each part of the circle, there are words that people use when giving directions.

The "easy" directions that don't impart rigor are words like define, draw, repeat, recall, tell, use.

The "hard" directions that impart the most rigor are words like design, connect, synthesize, apply concepts, critique, analyze, create and prove.  These words make you go beyond a quick answer and actually make you learn and prove your learning.

We are all supposed to start making kids do things in the "hard" part of the circle, things, that good teacher should already be doing.  He agreed that it's hard to do this all of the time and that most people want to live in the "easy" part of the circle because there isn't a lot of higher level thinking.

Clearly this man has never read my blog.  Because I think if you read me on a regular basis, you would probably say that most of those "hard" words define my blog posts!  I think many of us  DO live a rigorous life, creating, critiquing, applying concepts, analyzing, etc.

I think we tend to call it ADD.  The brain that will not rest. 

Why else would there be so many people posting crazy things on their blogs about how to repurpose just about any item you've ever seen, or how to can your own food, or how to make things with just a hammer and a nail?

Read many of the blogs I follow and I think you will see that I am not alone here.  I think there are more of us living rigorous lives than you realize. 

I also tend to think that many of us are teachers and were drawn to the profession because of the need to do a hundred things at once and never stop thinking.

So, when I'm dead, please be sure my tombstone reads as follows:

Here lies Miss Sparkling.
She told you there was something wrong with her.
But you didn't believe her and now she's dead.
At least she lived a rigorous life.

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree that those second set of words are more inspiring. The word I don't like? RIGOR. it reminds me of rigor mortis (sp?).

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