Student Learning at Roosevelt High School
Read Deborah Meiers passage below and think about what it means to be well-educated?
If we agree that what we want are citizens with a lively curiositywho ask, "how come?" and "why?" and "is it truly so?" well have the start of a new definition of well-educated. How about being closely observant, prepared to keep ones eyes and ears open for patterns, for details, for the unusual? Schooling should encourage playfulness the capacity to imagine, to wonder, to put things together in new and interesting ways as well as the possession of a skeptical and open mind. To be in the habit of imagining how others think, feel, and see the world in the habit of stepping into the shoes of others should surely be one of our new basics. (How else, after all, can we follow the Golden Rule?) And of course we need to be respectful of evidence, to distinguish good data from bad, to hesitate before sounding off without any facts. Id add knowing how to communicate carefully, persuasively, and powerfully in a variety of media including the skilled use of written and spoken language. My definition would also put a high premium on caring enough about the world and ones fellow citizens to take a stand and defend it.
Deborah Meier. The power of Their Ideas: Lessons for America from a Small School in Harlem. Boston: Beacon Press, 1995
As students, what types of skills, knowledge, and understandings do you need to be well-educated?
- Good time management
- Motivated and inspired to learn
- Respect towards others
- Thinking positively to be able to find solutions to problems
- Be your own critic
- Responsible for your community
- Having pride in your work and what you do
What kinds of resources, materials, assignments, and/or activities are available in the classroom that enables students to be well-educated? Are there things that are missing?
Books (Poetry, Novels, Short Stories)
More motivational instructors
Field tripslibraries, museums, etc.
Periodic Table in the classroom
Some lab equipment
More lab instruments!
The main difference between AP/honors and regular courses is that there is far more communication between students and teachers in advanced courses at Roosevelt. There is usually a better learning experience, especially when they are AP courses, because they are far more rigorous and are preparing for a test. The difference between the English honors and regular Chemistry class was not significant because the Chemistry teacher was well-trained and helpful. The way they separate students in the 9th and 10th grade into the honors or regular track is through SAT 9 scores, which do not really say who is really capable or not because they only measure certain things and do not reflect how smart you are.