What road sign represents your teaching style? What road sign represents your teaching style?
I would think that the sign "Children at play" might be my sign. The emphasis is not so much on "play," though I try to make my lessons engaging, and provide a safe learning environment where everyone's ideas are welcome and equal.
The idea of the sign, however, is to draw attention to the fact that there are children in the area, and that the driver must be mindful of this and act accordingly. The driver needs to make sure that no matter what else he is doing (talking on a cell phone or listening to music), that the children require his utmost attention and concern.
This is how I see myself in teaching. There are a great many things on a teacher's plate, but I try to make sure that I always concentrate as much as possible on the welfare of the kids.
Bottom line: a lot of people say that school is about the kids (some administrators, school board members, and even parents), and yet they don't really mean it. I can do little to change that, but I try my best to make sure my focus is true: it's got to be about the kids.
What an amusing question. I can see why many people have chosen the "merge" sign. I'm surprised that we haven't seen a constructivist post that the "green light." To me, the argument here would be that education should be about helping students to find their own way and if the teachers are a guide or facilitator in that process, then the students will be encouraged to find their own way. I can't help thinking that stop signs have so many negative connotations that few teachers will want to associate them with education. However, this begs the question: what would be the road sign that teachers would argue least represents their teaching style. But that's another post.
"Lane ends, merge right."
On the road, this sign often means a traffic jam ahead. But my classroom has never been focused on rushing through things. Often, I forgo the plan for the day in order to focus on a comment by a student, or take a discussion in a new direction. My favorite days in the classroom are the ones where we are not focused on "finishing" but rather on seeing how we get there. Sounds cheesy, and it doesn't happen nearly often enough, but my best classes have been the ones that were the most adaptable to changes in plans.
My sign would be Give Way. I find it is important to make room for all of the ideas in my class, and that can mean monitoring those who charge ahead and dominate discussion to allow others' speaking and thinking time. Sometimes it would be to remind myself that there are a myriad of interpretations of a text, and I do not have to lead the students to every valid conclusion. Other times it would be guiding students to think through an opinion before writing or committing themselves to an argument which may lead to a Dead End.
I would have to say a merge sign. I know where the road is going and I am the one traveling on the main road. My students are entering my classroom and my lessons and I need to make sure I watch out for them -- their needs and skill levels -- are we continue down the road together. Some students boldly enter the main road with me; others are cautiously looking for a comfortable way to enter the main road. Either way, they have to get off the ramp and merge in eventually -- we hopefully all get to the same destination.
For me, it's "Caution, Workers in the Road" or whatever the most current version of the old "Men Working"sign is. The sign applies to me and to my students. I have to remember that they are trying to learn and it may be slow going and I shouldn't run them over. I also have to remember that I am (or should be) constantly working on the way I teach. So I have to slow down and think as the lesson proceeds so I can be sure to learn from the way things are going.
I would have to echo the first post in response, the first thing that came to mind was the yield sign. In any number of different ways, I try to yield as much control as is feasible over the learning and work that takes place in my classroom to the students so that they can be more invested and more engaged in what is going on. Of course there is still a direction that we are working towards, but again, I try to yield control to them as much as possible.
Men at Work, except it should read, People at work! My students are actively engaged, whether they know it or not, in meaningful work, whether it be fun or serious, individual or group work. Everyone is always working at something, which leads to less behavioral problems, and more learning!
This is an interesting question. I don't know why, but what popped into my head was YIELD. I think it's because I want to remind everyone in my classroom to stop and think, and consider others. Viewpoints and feelings of others are important in my classroom.
I would create my own road sign:
It is an red octagon that says "THINK" instead of "STOP."
I think my road sign would be a fork in the road. I think the classroom is a journey than can be full of wonderful discoveries, but not everyone makes the same stops or enjoys the same attractions.
I find it important that my students understand that there are different paths to the same goal. I can teach a particular poem or piece of prose and some students will find certain passages memorable and others will find different ones. Not all interpretations are the same and not all students learn the same way.
I try to engage the 3 different types of learners in my classroom which occasionally makes it a bit raucous. As long as students are engaged and progressing, I am happy. I try to push each student to his or her potential and find the way that can be achieved.
I DO NOT believe that a quiet class is a learning one, an engaged one, or a respectful one by default. Lecturing to students is often the best way for them to tune out.
I would have to say the yield sign represents my teaching style. I continually find myself letting new ideas merge into my teaching practices. I am constantly on the look out for innovative practices and teaching strategies that can propel the learning in my classroom to a higher level. I also have a lot of other professionals who come in and out of my teaching environment on a daily basis. I have learned to allow them to come and go without disrupting the flow of my instruction.