Thursday, June 30, 2011

changes and growth...

This is math and science teacher Pete Golden's last day at Clear Spring School, as he is moving on to other interesting teaching opportunities. I have been thinking about all the wonderful learning projects we did together at CSS over the last 10 years, and hoping that we can find someone who can grow into his replacement. In the photo above you can see one of our collaborative projects, a periodic table of elements. The wood components were only a small portion of the project, as Pete, actually filled the compartments behind the wooden tiles with samples of as many various elements as he could gather over the last 3 years. The project is a work in progress as there are elements that are unstable, and many that are hard to get or hard to handle and may not be included at any point in time. After this photo was taken, we used stamps to put the element codes in place on each tile, and built a stand for its display. The project is an example of two things, what a wood shop can do to stimulate hands on engagement, and what happens when teachers are given generous latitude to follow their own creative collaborative inclinations on behalf of the education of our children.

Pete reminded me that when he first came to CSS, he knew nothing about alternate learning styles and non-standard means of assessment. An example he mentioned is that he did not know that proficiency in geometry could be demonstrated in dance. And so, CSS is a culture of learning. Pete learned a great deal and brought his many gifts to CSS and has now grown on, only to leave space for a new teacher to grow with us in the coming year.  I will miss Pete, and do celebrate the years we spent teaching together.

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