#IMMOOC: My Students’ Strengths, Time for a Mid-Week Check-in

#IMMOOC: My Students’ Strengths, Time for a Mid-Week Check-in

It’s only Wednesday, and the week has been full of highs and lows. And the funny thing is that it’s not with the students, it’s within me. I have just come off an incredibly proud moment for the students in which they built a city which was incredibly creative and collaborative. They did such an awesome job and I really regretted that I hadn’t gotten started on it sooner to do another iteration through the design cycle so we could really do more research and prototyping because the learning had been so rich and they were so highly focused. It seemed obvious to me how important it is to create a “mini-makerspace” (their words) in our classroom which we are in the process of setting up. So, although, the unit is finished and onto the next one, I can only hope will be as meaningful and perhaps more powerful as this one.   

“Unfortunately, we dangle students interests in front of them like a carrot. We say, ‘You can only do what you love when you finish what you hate.’ ” -George Curous, Innovator’s Mindset-

During this Week 5 of our Innovator’s Mindset MOOC, George Curous has asked, Do I know and build upon the strengths of who I serve? He shares that the research suggests that ‘people who do have the opportunity to focus on their strengths every day, are six times as like to be engaged in” in their work and “three times as likely to report having an excellent quality of life in general”. Now, seriously, who doesn’t want that? It got me thinking, how well do I know what the students’ individual strengths are, beyond running records, spelling tests and JAM (Junior Assessment of Mathematics)? Do I really have enough insight into their perception of themselves to know what they think are their strengths so I can build upon it? And what about their “weaknesses”–how do they view those: through a fixed or a growth mindset? And am I framing those in such a way that they can recognize how temporary those can be when we commit to improvement? Do they love the challenge of learning or do they see these things are necessary because they are on the schedule? It’s the idea of passion vs. participation that Curous talks about that I am most keen to tease out of my students. As I move into the 2nd half of my week, I am setting the intention to dig a little deeper into what the students’ strengths are.

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Judy Imamudeen

Judy Imamudeen

Developing learners as leaders is my joy! As a highly qualified International Baccaluearate (IB) teacher and educational leader, I am committed and passionate about executing its framework and empowering students in creating a future world that works for everyone.

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