That is going to change.
As adults, we (and I very much include myself in this) frequently make many assumptions about our students. We often assume we know how they feel about our school, about how they perceive us as adults, about how they learn, and what experiences they bring to the classroom. We assume that we know their likes and dislikes, what engages them and what bores them, and how best to communicate them.
But if I asked our students, they would tell me
- anyone over the age of 20 is old
- there are very few people in education who have ANY idea what is cool (and the term cool? Not cool.)
- and FYI, I am not one of those few people.
But kids haven't.
Each year, a new group of students enter our schools, and they bring their own (and often VERY diverse) set of preconceptions, beliefs, needs, wants, skills, and experiences. And each year, it is conceivable that if you asked students, they would tell you that we have done very little to discover what those preconceptions, beliefs, and experiences actually are to change our approach to their learning and their being a part of our school community.
I am endeavoring to change this. And I am willing to do the research with as many focus groups as I can over the Spring Semester. But I need help.
I have shared a Google Document called "If you could ask kids anything about schools" , and I would like to get as many bits of input as possible about things people would like to ask students about schools. Now I will be asking Grade 8-12 students from our high school of 1350 students, so that may not necessarily fit your learning situation. But regardless of your particular educational context, I think there is a litany of rich information that I am going to find (and share) that any educators might find interesting.
SO, if you could ask kids anything about schools, what would YOU ask? Please add your questions to my list so that when I start these focus groups in Semester Two, I will be able to make these conversations valuable and meaningful.