Sunday, April 8, 2012

Blog Post #10

Do You Teach or Do You Educate?

     The above video is about the difference in the definitions of the words to teach and to educate. I think the video makes a strong case that anyone and everyone should educate not simply teach. When I decided to get into the field of education, it was partly because I don't like the way that students are being taught in schools. I want to change this; not for every student, as I know that isn't feasible, but for all students that I come in contact with. I want them to be educated and to be active learners.

     I believe that everyone deserves the chance to learn from and engage their environment. This is a matter of respect. Thus, we should not simply explain everything and not allow for the active learning. In my classroom, I look forward to seeing mistakes; they are what allow each of us to learn. Making mistakes helps us to understand what we did wrong and/or what we can do better. Yet, if we only do what we are told, then we simply don't know how to do any better.

Don't Let Them Take Pencils Home


     Mr. Spencer's post was written as a response to Larry Ferlazzo's post on home computer usage. Regardless, I was very frustrated by Mr. Spencer's post because I noticed that Gertrude, as he calls her, completely missed the real point of the study. She took someone else's conclusion and used it to jump to another erroneous conclusion. It very important to scientifically think about one's conclusions and how they are reached. Gertrude assumed that pencils are inherently "bad." She made this assumption based on reading one study. How could she negate centuries of pencil usage, just like that?

     Pencils are writing tools. We use them everyday to write essays, notes, and even to fill out tests. I don't understand how students using pencils at home can decrease their test scores. Actually, if pencils are used properly at home, then test scores should go up. Mr. Spencer was very smart to suggest educating students and parents on proper pencil usage. I even agree with him that playing Hangman and writing to Pen-Pals can be educational. Students can learn to spell words more accurately and write less haltingly. All-in-all, I think that pencils are very important tools that must be used carefully. There is even a very high chance that with the appropriate usage pencils can help to increase test scores.


  1. "I look forward to seeing mistakes; they are what allow each of us to learn." I wish everyone understood how important this is!

    You did not understand that Johnson's (Spencer's) commentary was an extended metaphor or allegory in which pencils were computers. Reread the post with that in mind.

  2. Dr. Strange,
    I appreciate your taking the time to leave me a comment.

    When reading Tom Johnson's post, I did consider that he replaced computers with pencils, but I felt that it was more important to address the issue he referred to as "1:1 computing." I realize that my post may not have effective done that, but I did go back to Mr. Johnson's(Mr. Spencer's) post and reread it. I did this when I left my C4C on James Dumman's blog. James Dunnam found the metaphor that you suggest. I am slightly leery of this and think that the post was written to highlight the issues with making assumptions too quickly. I do realize that I am the student in this situation. Did I really misread the blog post entirely or are there multiple ways to read Mr. Johnson's post?