Reading Ch.2 of Kumashiro’s article titled “Preparing Teachers for Crisis” was a good example of how most teachers feel as they navigate their first years of teaching. University does not prepare us for the behavior or different learning demographics our students bring into the classroom. Kumashiro expresses in the Case study of M a student who was had challenging behavior, student M just wasn’t fit for a traditional classroom setting. M seemed to be at their best when given the option to do what interested them. There was a time when M would ask the teacher if ” they were bad today”, that hurts my heart to hear that students feel that way in the classroom on a daily basis. Society has put the students in a box determined on how they should look, act, behave in a classroom. If a student is outside of that box they are labeled and judged. The privileged students are the ones who fit in that box and Kumashiro (2019) suggests that “mainstream society often places value on certain kinds of behaviors, knowledge and skills and schools would disadvantage students by not teaching what often matters in schools and society.” Kumashiro (2019) goes onto suggest that, “there is something about the very ways we think about learning that can be oppressive.” In other words can schools and classroom look different from how it did 40 years ago? Can we learn to adpat and change with our students who are not the same kids that they were 40 years ago? Kumashiro makes a valid point, “was this not the view of learning upon which “learning standard” were based mainly that we identify what knowledge and skills we want students to learn and afterwards we asses whether or not students can demonstrate that they indeed learning such things.” This is what we call “end game” . Giving students the autonomy over their learning and demonstrating what they have learnt, keeping them engaged and interested?
Kumashiro. (2009). Against Common Sense: Teaching and Learning Toward Social Justice, pp. XXIX – XLI