6 messages each scholar ought to hear

through Terry Heik & Jackie Gerstein

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I pulled an excerpt from a recent post by Jackie, 6 activities I use to connect with students at the beginning of the year, because I felt it was too valuable to be buried in a post on another topic.

She spoke about messages for students to hear – to “start the year.” She did not intend it to be an end to all messages for all students everywhere, but rather the messages she delivers to her students in the context of what her students will be doing and how she will be teaching.

Because I liked their messages so much, I reworked them a bit for a wider audience, which you can find below.

There are dozens of messages that students “need” to hear, but I showed restraint (could have been 50) and stuck to six. If I did the post tomorrow, I might see things differently. Feel free to add yours to the comments below.

6 messages every student should hear on the first day of school

Beginning the lesson with a focus on connections rather than content conveys the following messages to learners.

1. You are the focus of the lesson, not me. You are important as a learner and as a person in this class.

2. You are capable of anything.

3. You will be expected to engage in learning activities during class time. You will be an active learner. I, as a facilitator, will be just that—a facilitator. I will introduce the learning activities, but you will be responsible for the actual learning.

4. Everything you do – good or “bad” – affects everyone else in the room. This means that everything you do matters because you matter.

5. Fighting is part of learning. If it’s easy or just done, you probably won’t learn anything.

6. The way you think is more important than anything you do or don’t know/are not “good” at, etc.

6 messages every student should hear on the first day of school

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