My Education Background

1165212_show_timeA long time ago, I was tagged by Miss A. I have some free time this morning as I get ready to go out of town with the HS band, so I thought I’d get around to this thing here…

  1. Is School 2.0 about technology or pedagogy (teaching methods)?
    Though I am not terribly familiar with the concept of School 2.0, it looks to be primarily about technology. Of course, I am not a big fan of new “teaching methods” and so anything that purports to be a new “teaching method” automatically raises a red flag for me.
  2. What were 1-3 things you had to”unlearn” to become an effective teacher?
    Wow, great question here.


    • Don’t try to be friends with the students. You must be their leader. They will try to push you as far as they can get you. They will try to see you lose control.
    • Classroom management for me is primarily a dictatorship inside the classroom. Anything that happens, whether good or bad, is a direct or indirect result of something I have either allowed or required to happen. In my first two years or teaching, I blamed the students for a lot of misbehavior. When I began to accept responsibility, things started changing.
    • Just because you student taught with a great teacher does not mean that you can go in the classroom the next year, say everything they said, do everything they did, and have the same results. There is something to be said for developing “the look” that I simply did not have in my first two years. Now I can go into a room full of children and they will be quiet within 3 minutes.
  3. Did you learn these poor practices in your teacher preparation program, or somewhere else? If so, where?
    I was never a bad student. I was tardy once in 8th grade. I got a 73 in algebra I in 8th grade. That was about as bad as it got for me. I never had detention, I never argued with a teacher. As a result, I had absolutely no clue how to deal with children who had done these things
  4. Describe the philosophy of your teacher preparation program in 25 words or less.
    The education school was very hypothetical methods focused. The music education department was much more interested in teaching us what to teach. It helped greatly.
  5. What age/grade level do you teach? When did you attend school at that level?
    Middle School (7th – 8th); 1990-1991
  6. When were you in your teacher preparation program?

I know, I know, I’m supposed to tag someone with this thing. Hmm, how about Betty, John (where’s my book!), Vivek, and Matthew.


About Joel Wagner 522 Articles
Joel Wagner (@sywtt) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting. He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. So You Want To Teach? is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.

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