Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Sometimes I'm the distraction

Yesterday, I had my class in the computer lab where I read to them a short story. Afterwards, I asked them to write a blog post on our class ning. While they blogged, I walked around and read over their shoulders, sharing outloud for all to hear ideas that might inspire their blogging.

As I walked around the room, I saw one of my students deep in thought, pecking away at his keyboard. But then he stopped.

As I stopped walking and talking, he looked at me and said:

Could you stop talking? You are making me lose my focus.

I wasn't upset.

Or defensive.

Instead, I laughed outloud and smiled within.

I was proud.

I was proud that a student in my class felt comfortable enough to speak his mind. He wasn't rude about it. He waited for me to stop, made eye contact and asked me to stop.

He needed me to stop talking so that he could start thinking.

It was a good way to end the day.

38 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing Joe. I do the same thing sometimes! Intellectually, I know I shouldn't be the focus of attention all the time, but old habits die hard.

    Personally, I don't even like someone looking over my shoulder as I formulate a blog post. The initial thoughts I jot down are often out of order and don't make a lot of sense, so I get self-conscious if even my fiancee is over my shoulder, reading a post in progress.

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  2. Thanks, Mr. B. It's nice how you realize that our opinions are important, and you have given us all a place to speak our mind.

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  3. i remember this in class it is verry interesting that you put it on your blog.

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  4. people are more conifdent in your class just because you ask us for no hands up and you let us sorta choose a little bit of what where allowed to do. But i think in other class no one would have spoke up like that

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  5. i lose my focus to when people are talking it makes it harder to think. i mean i know that people are trying to help by talking over you shoulder, but some people can't focus and others can't.

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  6. I thought that was kind of funny. I actually sort of wanted to say the same thing and was actually relived that he did, so I didn't have to.

    I don't like when people read over my shoulder. It really, really bothers me. If you ask my friends they'll tell you. Sometimes I yell at them because they're looking at my work as I'm working on it. I don't mind if you read it when I'm done... Just not while I'm in the process of completing it.

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  7. That is a very interesting story.
    If it is good that your students have the comfortable enough that they will speed thier maind, and not worry about getting in trouble.

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  8. i like how you dont get all defensive like other people, or ultimitaly teachers.

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  9. I some times dont like it how teachers talk and your trying write and your really into it and you have all these good ideas.But as soon as the teachers start talking you take you focus over there and you lose evrything that you thinking.

    I think this is bad because some teachers talk way to much and they just talk and you dont get to do anything and it gets really boring after a while.

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  10. I remember this:) I was really shocked when Mr.Bower laughed at this, most of my teachers right now would have gotten mad, or defensive. Kids alot of the time, including me don't know how to say things "softly." Half the time when I insult people, I don't even mean to. I'm sure this happens to lots of kids, just because i'm not sure how to speak exactly whats on my mind, without saying it harshly I guess.

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  11. I remember that yesterday! I think its cool how you always ask for our opinion and you always tell us you wont be affended by what we say. In fact you say you will take it seriously and will try to work at changing yourself. I think thats pretty cool. I like being in your class, I like learning and the way you teach is a good way because we spend more time learning than testing and raising our hands and doing homework. I think that is cool too.

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  12. I remember this in class. I thought you were going to get mad at the student and I was very surprised when you didnt. I thought you were going to get mad because when ever I question or ask a teacher to stop talking im always being rude ? I dont know how questioning what they tell me is rude but i guess it is. But Mr.Bower is not like that. If I have a quetsion I'm never afraid to ask it.

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  13. When he said that I found it funny and I can't really type with someone reading over my shoulder either I pause and can't think as well.

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  14. If someone is look over my shoulder, I get kinda neverous and pretend Im doing something but really I'm thinking to myself, is this good enough or what the person is thinking.

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  15. i dont think he was being rude but it is kinda distrucking when a person is behind you a you feel them breathing down on you.

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  16. Im a student of Mr.Bower or as other people know him as Joe, my name is Kimberley, yesterday was pretty interesting when Mr.Bower read that story. It was about this guy that wanted to be more then he could like example: he wanted to be the sun then he wanted to be clouds and then he wanted to be wind, but then he kept wanting to be things then he ended up being the person he is ... a stone cutter. So basically it's saying to be yourself, and i was into my paragraph when Mr.Bower was talking also but i could still type and listen to him at the same time. Then when one of our students in our class said "Could you stop talking? You are making me lose my focus." I kind of laughed too haha, so yeah ..

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  17. Im a stduent in Mr.Bowers class. i thought it was pretty interesting how the one student told mr.bower to stop talking. i kinda stop and frooze up cuz i have never heard a student tell the teacher to stop talking. Any other teahcer woud have got mad and yelled but instead mr.bower laughed and stoped talking. i was workng my blog post i couldnt concintrate but didnt want to say stop talking so i carried on untill well the steudent say stop talking...

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  18. I think That One of the best possible solllutions to ending vlass is with a request of a student. And although to some people It might scare some teachers when students ask teachers to stop talking for the end of class. I think it's a nice way to end class because sometimes ending a class can be... awqwerd or feel like your neverouse because it's not what you that speaking, it's the student that does it for you. And as an added bonus You know that that student that asked you to be quiet so he can work will actually work but also that you know that other people will work as well. Some teachers might say "well you know that there will be students that will be off task and will be palyign games and on sites that don't include the current topic that at hand?" and my answer to that is that belive it or not that students are or were working and being extremely hard on thta tpoic evem though it may not seem like it. Stuedents can only stay on topic for so long that after a while you will find more students getting off task because they don't want to be on that specific topic anymore. So besides that, this is the best way to end school!

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  19. Dear Joe. As One Of Your Class Students. not going to lie but you talk alot lol :p the story you were reading to us yesterday i didnt really get. somthing about power and wanting more. and when he said stop talking i was laughing cus it was kinda true you were giving some people more ideas but others to lose focus.not many people can do more then one thing at a time and when you want us to type and think and etc. some times you do need to stop talking but alot of times its really good when you are talking and we are thing at less your not like alot of class were in movies were every little thing you will stop the movie to talk.

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  20. Great post. I often feel like a distraction. It's hard to know when they need more direction and when they need quiet time to think.

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  21. Dear Student in Class: Don't you hate it when people talk all the way through movies? :P

    If there is a point to make in a movie, like in a class, it's always a good idea to stop the movie.

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  22. i think you can learn better how to make your class better if students speak their mind.

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  23. I think it's great that he spoke up and said what he thought . i mean i don't think anyone else would say that because they would think that it's rude . i personally , would say that too .
    some people are too scared to just say it . i mean if you don't say it , then it's not going to change anything .
    but i personally don't like it when people read over my shoulder . i get nervous , and then stop . i would rather wait until my stuff is done , and then people could read it . when people read over my shoulder , i think it spoils what i've been working for so long , then someone reads it , then it gets spoiled .

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  24. i do see why that student would say that because sometimes when i am in class and the teacher doesnt like stop talking it becomes like a disraction and i cant really focus on my work and i think of something else.... but i think it was good that the student said that to the teacher...
    but i think that some teachers would say something about it ....im glad that this teacher didnt get mad

    so its all good

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  25. I think that it was could that the student spoke his mind because then he would probably learn better because when people are talking I find it hard to concentrate and think about what Im working on.

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  26. Yeah I do hate, but in bowers class we always have class discussions I enjoy them because instead of writing a super long essay I can say my mind for what could take days only takes a class, I think that in the internet you can learn a topic that would take a month it can take a class on the internet. I remeber one day we whent to the computer to work on a project and I was finshed so mr bower said to learn about mocules I learned then he told me what did you learn I told him then he gave me another, then another, and it was a big loop of science at the end of the class I told him, I learned today what would probably take a month.

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  27. I think tat is really cool i wish i could do that but i dont feel comfortable around any one, exseped for some friends and parents, i dont even feel compleatly comfortable around my aunts and uncles, grandma or grampa and i for sure dont feel comfortabe around teachers.

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  28. well i enjoy Mr. bowers class alot, he finds ways to make it interesting.
    it yeah its hard to focus when someone is talking

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  29. Sometimes I wish Mr. Bower would speak less too! Ha Ha
    I made it on Convention Board...we're one step closer to getting Sir Ken to Red Deer!

    CM (

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  30. I like having class room descusions instead of work sheets all the time like most teachers do it get really boring and kind of anoying

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  31. I think it's always hard to focus while someone is talking to me.

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  32. I think that that is pretty funny, sometimes it doesn't matter how old or what there social status is some times you just need too tell the person what you need too happen too get your work done even if it means hurting there feelings a little bit. @(^_^)@ posted by: Austin Hamilton

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  33. haha thats funny i wouldn't have the guts to say that!

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  34. well somtimes when you have great ideas its hard to get them out there but MR.bower has given us the chance to be heard and then we can have more confidence. thanx Mr. Bower.

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  35. Brady Seargent Peppers Anderson (-_-)May 12, 2010 at 9:51 AM

    I really wish i would of been there. Because it is really awsome that you let us speek our own opinions. And also let us don't do anything traditional teachers do. I am really going to miss you next year

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  36. I like how we can speak our mind without being sent to the office or yelled at. There has been multiple times where I have wanted to speak my mind but I knew that I would be yelled at.

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  37. That was a very teachable moment...for the teacher. I'm sure it's one of the experiences you will remember forever.Kids are capable of teaching us important things if we will only listen. We have to believe that kids are able to teach us key concepts.

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