Which outside ideas have moved you to rethink your teaching?

Do you have some you have kept in the wings?

Explore them with colleagues to test their viability.

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•Have you felt pressure from oppressive “theocracies” on your teaching? If so, what did you do to free yourself of them to become the teacher you need to be for your students? Did you seek help from others? If you feel such pressure now, what can you do about it?

•If you decide to succumb to theocracy, particularly one that you deplore, weigh carefully the consequences on you and your students.

•Take Eisner’s five principles (See Post #90) one at a time and explore their meaning with colleagues. As you come to understand them, implement them into your teaching and observe their effect. Plan to observe each other for feedback.

•If we take Pullman’s “as if” seriously, (See Post #91) it will change our thinking. We will likely alter our internal conversations, those self-communiqués that define who we think we are and can be. Adopting “as if” thinking, we become open to what transpires and to what touches our heart. We become different teachers.

Do these ideas help you become a better teacher?

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For more on this crucial issue see Chapter 17 “Teach As If” in Teaching from the Middle of the Room: Inviting Students to Learn from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Teaching-Middle-Room-Frank-Thoms/dp/0615358918.