School is out, but as someone who has lived with an elementary school teacher for nearly seven years, I know that teachers are still hard at work, all summer, and year-round. Just as parents are encouraged to keep their kids reading and doing educational activities during school breaks to keep their knowledge top of mind, teachers too need to keep their instruction and methods current and relevant to keep their students engaged and progressing.
Even after teacher has been at the job a decade, common core lesson plans do not come automatically. Classroom instruction varies year to year, class to class, and while the main core curriculum may be dictated by the school board, teachers are given the freedom to apply their own style and sensibilities in ways they feel will best suit their students.
In the progressive Piaget philosophy that my son’s school follows, a child is not an empty vessel to fill with facts and figures but a developing and learning being that when using knowledge in practical, experiential ways can develop life-long learning skills that extend beyond school and into careers and interpersonal relationships.
Mentoring Minds is one resource for teachers who follow this constructivist way of learning, where children learn critical thinking skills for life. While teachers will still always be immersed, as many of them would have it no other way, in creating the lessons for their classes, resources like Mentoring Minds are not only helpful in guiding them but also affirming in the success of the program.