Friday, November 7, 2014

Reflective Teacher at TeachThought- November Blog Challenge- Day 7

One of the newer journeys that I started a couple of years ago is embracing the maker movement within my classroom and either asking students to create material designed around the theme we are studying in class or offer them different options to show understanding of the material using the target language. One of the books that I really enjoyed reading was "Invent to Learn" by Silvia Libow Martinez. 

One of the things that I embraced most from the book is that maker classrooms are active classrooms where you will find engaged students working on multiple assignments simultaneously, and where teachers are unafraid to relinquish their role of being the authoritarian. Collaboration between students is flexible and teachers wear many hats in the classroom: mentor, student, colleague, and expert. Although I don't run a true maker classroom because I don't teach math nor science, I do like to think that I help my students to "make" and "tinker" with the language and thus develop their skills.

My new journey in the past few years has been creating a maker environment through a modified flipped classroom. It has taken me some time to find the approach that best fits me and my students but now after some initial review, reminders and possible instruction on key concepts, students engaged in completing any number of activities that are designed to move them forward in their proficiency. I am enjoying being a facilitator and coach a lot and I love having lots of opportunities to dialogue with my students and help them grow in the language!


  1. I like what you said about coaching and facilitating as a means to support student growth. That model is so effective, but difficult for many teachers to embrace!

  2. Beth, I agree! My kids can handle the multiple menu model and juggle multiple projects -- it's my administrators who don't quite get that a tightly worded lesson with perfect activating strategies and summarizers aren't always necessary to get kids to go deep.