What is it like to be "not the same?" And what does it feel like to find out?
As teachers, we are looking at the different ability levels in our room as an instructor. We are thinking about how to teach the kids to their strengths and reach them in their weaknesses. Not only do I teach many students with different learning styles, but a little girl with Down syndrome is a huge part of my life. Despite these interactions, I really don't know what it feels like.
National Public Radio's Chicago-based show This American Life recently ran a show entitled "Special Ed." As with every episode of TAL, there are several vignettes featured and the first one in this particular show interviewed students about the moment when they realized they were different. The rest of the show is great, as usual, but just those first five minutes are worth a listen.
It should be pretty apparent at this point that I am a proponent of reflective teaching, but this segment made me reflect on my teaching through the eyes of my students, as well.