Increase Student Engagement by Getting Rid of Textbooks | Edutopia

August 6, 2010 § Leave a comment


    • But I’ve had to realize that times have changed and that even in the short decade that I’ve been a teacher, many of the texts, tools, and devices I’d learned to see as "most effective" weren’t necessarily the "most effective" now in 2010 when it came to holding my student’s attention — and more importantly, instigating the best benefits of their motivation and imagination.

    • the textbook is generally a medium that inspires neither motivation nor imagination.

    • The students do not learn "better" because my life as a teacher is "easier." Convenience is not a form of effective pedagogy.

    • In my 9th grade West Civ class, this means students learn directly from primary sources (see the Internet History Sourcebook, the Perseus Project, the Library of Congress’s ‘Teaching with Primary Sources’ project, and the Internet Archive) without the filter of a textbook middleman.

    • One of the most exciting things to have come out of the textbookless experience among my West Civ social studies colleagues has been the way in which each of us have the opportunity to share what we know and what we really care about with one another in the active creation of our own courses of study — and thus we depend on and appreciate even more each other’s knowledge, wisdom, and professionalism both f2f and through our social networks.

    • I’d ask the English Department: "Why are you buying novels and anthologies that by-and-large are available for free online at places like Project Gutenberg, Open Library, and Google Books?"

    • Use your hard-earned knowledge and post your own questions on a class blog; let the kids formulate questions; shake things up a bit.

    • The point of schooling in this country is to educate the next generation to have the courage and sensibility to make decisions that better our society.

      • So true! It’s definitely NOT about passing tests, either!

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

"Shelly Blake-Plock is a high school classroom teacher from Maryland. He runs the blog and some of his most interesting recent conversations have been with textbook publishers."


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