Lately I’ve been thinking about this story as it relates to how we math teachers feel the need pursue the “perfect” math lesson or that shiny new tool/technique we hear we should try.
We seem to be after the perfectly engaged class (behaviourally and cognitively) learning the chosen standard at just the right pace for all students. And why shouldn’t we? It sounds great. But, what is the likelihood that we’ll ever achieve this “perfectness”. The reality is that teaching is messy; all classrooms are different.
We see so much positivity on the internet and from our peers. Looking at twitter or blog posts suggests that so many teachers are having these perfect classes or that the shiny new tool/technique solves all our problems. And it leaves us sometimes feeling inferior and overwhelmed.
I think some of us feel that we need to be using that iPad, or new tech tool, or shine new learning model everyday to create this perfect happy class.
Let’s relate this situation to The Dot and the Line story.
Imagine for a moment that you are the main character from the book; the line. The dot is ….. well, the dot is that “perfect” class lesson where all students are using that new shiny tool or technique that we’re not quite sure about.
When the line first meets the Dot and sees that “she” only has eyes for the whimsical squiggle, the line feels that “he” needs be more like the squiggle.