Teacher, do you know what it feels like to be a student in your class?
Alexis Wiggins: “I have made a terrible mistake. I waited fourteen years to do something that I should have done my first year of teaching: shadow a student for a day.”
Alexis acted for two days as a student. “My task was to do everything the student was supposed to do.” At the end of the first day she was so tired. She noticed (1) that students sat down the entire day, except for walking to and from classes, she realized (2) that high school students are learning passively and listening 90% of their classes and (3) she felt a little bit as a nuisance all day long.
Her advice is to shadow your students as well, to understand what they are going through and to find out how to make your class a better place to be. Alexis recommends: (1) create possibilities for students to move, (2) offer brief lectures and start with collaborative learning, (3) stop with sarcasm and communicate with respect.