Look at it Differently

When you face an UN-solveable riddle as a teacher, you might find a solution if you step back and look at it differently. Currently, I am dealing with a small yet tedious situation with a bookshelf. I moved it and now I don’t think its location is optimal for my students. I moved it where it is now to assist me in my lesson planning but in doing so through “tunnel vision” I failed to see how it would block a large area where I could present student work. I went over the placement again and again in my mind coming up empty on a win/win idea. Sometime today, I will sit down and sketch an aerial view of my classroom, in hopes of finding a better placement. Of course, i have left out the part about how heavy and obtrusive it is. I believe it can be used in an optimal way to serve both the teacher and students. As of yet though, I haven’t a clue how.

Making a schematic of the room is a way to look at the conundrum differently. I have used this approach to many teaching issues with positive results. This approach could mean many things: videoing yourself teaching, asking a colleagues perspective, a Principal. My drawing I will make at my kitchen table is a change of perspective. It is a way of viewing a problem “from a distance.” Sometimes looking at your situation differently is the secret to a dynamite lesson plan.

Author: Damien Riley

Having been a public school teacher since 1997, I've gained valuable classroom experience. Sometimes a great tool is a dynamite lesson plan. These posts are from a real teaching journey. I hope they inspire you. Thanks for reading!

4 thoughts on “Look at it Differently”

  1. Not sure what the solution will be but I’m assuming the bookcase is what is behind the white boards? – Think outside the box maybe. Perhaps the case isn’t meant to benefit the students this year or the desks need to be shifted somehow. Bookcases aren’t easy to move and hope you have some furniture movers when it comes to rearranging the bookcase and all. Let us know what the solution turns out to be – E :)

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