Week 1: Reflections and Resistance

Posted: November 8, 2013 in Write on!

 

Our first assignment for  English Language Arts was to write a reflection on our past writing experiences, and how these experiences will influence you as a writing teacher. I found this assignment to be eye opening: I love writing and am a voracious reader; however, once I delved into my inner psyche and thought about how writing was taught and learned, I began to question not only my own abilities but also the educational system’s inability to teach primary literacy…

I then opened up the BC ELA IRP for K-7 and I felt my blood pressure begin to gradually climb:  Although the IRP is well organized and informative, it is both limiting and overwhelming.  It focuses on learning in a linear manner, which I feel was not the case for me, and many others like myself. Although the outcomes build off of each other, and each stage leads to another higher stage; development does not always occur in a linear fashion; and we often cycle back through stages, to relearn or to grasp a higher understanding and comprehension of our learning. Moreover, not every class of grade one’s will understand the learning material the same way-teachers must be able to adapt and flex to the changing needs of their students.  Instead of three separate curriculum organizers, why not have one main focus that encompasses writing, reading and oral language as interwoven elements ?

 Experiential_Learning_cycle

It’s not all bad. I appreciated the suggested time frame for each curriculum organizer based on grade level. This would be very helpful for teachers when planning unit overviews in order to prioritize subject matter and have an understanding of what students have spent most time on the year before. I also found the curriculum organizers were well organized and further broken down into smaller, more manageable (aka teachable) units.  I think I need to spend some more time with the IRP and learn to love it, despite its prickly disposition.

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