The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes – Marcel Proust
It has taken an 8th grader to shift my thinking this year as she has taught me (even though it’s only September) to “see” in new ways. My student only has peripheral vision but has amazing spirit, enthusiasm, and zest for learning. She is my top student even as she uses a computer where she has a special mouse to increase font size, has to use her auditory skills to follow instruction, and she is teaching me what it means to collaborate as she naturally leans in to the person next to her for help. She naturally does what I wish all my students felt comfortable doing – learning from each other. My class is always collaborative as I use project based learning and my students are fortunate to have their own set of computers to use. Because of my learning philosophy (not teaching philosophy anymore), it is usual to see students working together, helping each other with programs such as Google Docs, Animoto, Voicethread, etc., and this naturally fits into what all my students need for learning. But through my wonderful student, I have been able to make sure all my students have access to optimal visuals from smartboard activities to maps to sharing projects.
It is going to be an amazing journey this year with my new “eyes” as I step up my collaboration with students from the Dominican Republic and hopefully, working with Digiteen in January ’11. Thanks @coolcatteacher for linking with VSP vision care and for my student for her wonderful spirit and inspiring me to discover with new eyes.
Learning and behavior problems are often undiagnosed vision problems and sometimes teachers are the first to suggest a vision exam. A great website – http://www.seemuchmore.com/be-healthy/ – wants to educate about vision care. For example, they have a chart on how much time kids should be on the computer per day according to age in order to prevent eye strain. Lots of other info there, check it out.
In what ways do you “see” differently this year? Let’s share on twitter – kconners09.