Bank Street Blogs: Sharing Wisdom with Wider Audience
I loved and benefitted from my teacher education at Bank Street, but I was always frustrated at the fact that more people did not know about Bank Street's approach. So I'm really excited to see that the graduate school of education is now blogging! Now anyone who wants to can benefit from the thinking at Bank Street about developmentally meaningful education for children and the teaching practices that create it.
In a blog titled, Fair Is Not Equal: a Differentiated Approach for Supporting Behavioral Growth in the Classroom, faculty members Pam Jones and Valentine Burr share observations, relevant theory, and stories from the classrooms and teachers they help support. This is great for new teachers or anyone just looking for a fresh voice around student behavior issues (though it is most geared toward elementary education). An example of some great post: A Case for Gum Chewing, explains how gum chewing can be a benefit to students during school. In Part II: What's Your Trigger? Valentine Burr writes about teaching students identify and respond to their own triggers for anger.
There is also a great Alumni Blog. It includes some news about Bank Street events aimed specifically at alumni (though many events are open to the public).There are also posts contributed by Bank Street alums (including Bill Ayers, myself, and many others) with reflections on their work in the field, related to their Bank Street experience. It's quite powerful to be able to connect these voices from different parts of education, united in the type of teacher training we all had. Here's a good post from an alumni: Experiential learning: Play By Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet. And here's one I contributed about the debate around constructivist learning: Raising Students Not Test Scores: Why Engel Has it Right
At Bank Street, teacher training is more than just technical preparation for the classroom. It tends to translate into a way of thinking about children's development and a mission to education kids in academically and developmentally meaningful ways. I hope Bank Street continues to share their work in blogs!