Friday, June 21, 2013

Learning Is Fun

I totally agree with the concept.  If learning is fun, kids are motivated and they strive.  Teachers are busy, day after day, thinking how to make their lessons attractive and catchy so kids would be engaged.  There are millions of creative games, fancy fonts, and illustrations available online and in the book stores.  What  creative minds teachers in our country have!  Additionally, when your student answers math facts correctly, he would shoot a virtual zombi on the computer screen.  Kids would rush over to the computer like vultures, wanting to shoot as many zombis as they could.  Wait a minute!  Perhaps, these activities are fun and motivational, but are kids experiencing "learning" is fun?  Furthermore, are these creative materials and activities really fundamental "learning" experiences?

What I contemplate is the definition is learning and how to define it.  Here are some ideas I propose;

1. I read this book because I get a sticker. v.s. I want to read this book because I really would like to know what happens next!

2. I complete these problems because I can color after I am done.  v.s. I want to do more problems because I am getting confident in these problems. 

3. I write my journal because it is homework.  v.s. I want to keep my questions and findings around my life in my journal every day.

There is nothing wrong with first voice in each section, however, how powerful the second voices are!  That is the "learning" I am talking about.  When teacher's job becomes more than keeping every kid on task by providing fancy worksheets or stickers, learning is going to expand its definition; learning as understanding, discovering, collaborating, sharing, innovating, analyzing, feeling good about themselves, and appreciating people around them.

Thus, my job is not only teaching content areas, but providing students opportunities to consider themselves as fun learners who enjoy themselves through daily challenges.