28 Oct Creative approach of ” The 7 Habits”
My Teacher thought I was great. So I was.
Creative Teaching at Transylvania College is a bi-weekly professional development programme run for teachers at the school and is a place where practical teaching tips are shared and the latest educational research and developments can be disseminated amongst eager colleagues.
As I began to prepare for last week’s session on differentiation I was struck by how relevant many of the ideas from the ‘Leader in Me’ initiative and the ‘7-habits of Highly Effective People’ were to differentiation. Then I smiled to myself. In Stephen Covey’s book, he repeatedly states that he is not the author of the ideals and principles that underpin the 7-habits. He explains that they are timeless truths that echo throughout society and are ultimately an intrinsic part of our humanity – so I really shouldn’t have been surprised at how they deepened and reinforced my views of differentiation.
Although there are many definitions of differentiation, a common thread runs through them all in that they all acknowledge differences in our students and their abilities. In the past 13 years differentiation in the classrooms, of many schools I have worked at in the UK and abroad, has often meant different work and different expectations. This is where the approach to differentiation we use and are developing at Transylvania College is different.
The 8th Habit is to inspire greatness; for teachers at our school that means in every child we teach. We believe that every child can achieve great things so we aim to differentiate in a way that provides scaffolding for those who need it rather than a different finishing line. My teacher thought I was great. So I was. At Transylvania College, the teachers do believe that all the students can be great and we continue to work hard every day to make sure they will be.