Saturday, May 16, 2009

Teaching should be more...

Teaching should be more than just students repeating and regurgitating information back. Sometimes that is how it feels for me and I'm sure it is the same for other teachers. Welcome to the Rinkel Farm! As I was outside with the family the other evening, three cows appeared in our pasture (broke through the neighbor's fence). My 6 year old daughter, and 4 year old son, and I (being the cool dad I am) began "mooing" at them and within seconds they began to moo back. Isn't that exciting?? I moo and the cows respond the same way. This little episode reminded me of classrooms across America, even my classroom as I prepared students for state tests. We are teaching to standardized tests so we can meet government mandates. Some teachers continue teaching using methods of the 1970s lecturing and requiring students to respond back or regurgitate the material back. Teachers worldwide need to find ways to reach the students of today if they are to succeed in todays world. Instead of creating students who simply repeat the material back and forget it after the test, we need to create students who can critically think, communicate, collaborate, and be creative.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


At the Indianapolis 500 Time Trials, a great amount of risk is taken to secure the pole position for the greatest racing spectacle in the world. A lot can go wrong for a driver when they are circling the track at speeds of 224 miles per hour. Can risk be good in certain situations? When does risk become negative? Many people who have become successful have taken a risk with time or finances at some point. Risk is usually seen as bad v.s. good. Where do you draw the line? When does risk become negative instead of positive?