What is teaching?

Yesterday I was in a zoom conference with 2,000 people.

So many of them were having a hard time with home schooling.Β 

At first I couldn’t understand why.

But talking to them I realized the problem was that they thought they had to “teach” their kids.Β  Β 

They thought “teaching” meant they had to learn the subject material and then pass that knowledge onto their children.

But that’s not how teaching works.Β 

The first rule of teaching is “You can’t teach anything to any human.” Β  Β 

The Chinese proverb is “You open the door and the student has to enter by themselves.”Β 

You don’t need the specific knowledge. Β  In fact you shouldn’t because that would just limit your students to only the things you know, which is by definition finite.Β 

A teacher’s job is to help students to learn. Β 

And then to help them see the mistakes that they can’t yet see themselves.Β 

Just as I wouldn’t profess to “teach” an American accent or writing skills that I don’t yet possess,Β  our job is to simply help students clarify why they need to learn what they need to learn.Β 

And then maybe, as little as possible,Β  a tiny nudge of encouragement on their journey to finding how and where to find the answers. Β 

Do that and your students can learn anything & everything that is beyond the finite knowledge that any one of us as teachers currently have.

This is how the human species progresses.

So in this day of infinite knowledge accessible to everyone,Β  what is your job as a teacher? Β  And how can you help all those parents out there who are suffering right now?

 

Β 

Richard Graham

Hello, I'm Richard Graham. And when I was a kid I found school to be sooooo boring... So I transformed my way of teaching. I listened to what the kids were really wanting to say and taught it in ways they really wanted to learn. The results were magical. So I'm sharing it all with you now...

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