Teaching Opinion

Coach Students Rather Than Teach Students

By David Ginsburg — March 29, 2013 1 min read
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Some people think students are incapable of learning on their own or from each other. But the real issue isn’t whether students are able to learn independently. It’s whether teachers are ready and willing to let them. That’s what I discovered when I stopped doing for students what they could do for themselves. And it’s what teachers I’ve coached have discovered when they stopped doing this too. Yves Kabore is one such teacher, and here are some of his thoughts about this:

Letting students take more active roles in their learning doesn’t mean teachers should take more passive roles. It means we should take new roles. We should assess students before assisting them. We should prepare for students’ mistakes rather than try to prevent them. We should facilitate less whole-group instruction, and more whole-group discussion.

We should do what Yves Kabore has done to enable 6th graders to “fly through” material many 10th graders would find challenging: coach students rather than teach students.

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