Getting Lost in Service

--Originally published at Flipped Learning

The art of teaching in today's classroom has less to do with content and more to do with connections. Long gone are the days of standing in front of class, lecturing to students about content. Today's teachers understand the need to be dynamic facilitators of the learning experience, helping to serve and meet each student where he/she is at. While not an easy task by any measure, today's teachers spend countless hours planning, prepping, and serving students to the best of their abilities. 

Perhaps that is why I transitioned to Flipped Learning years ago - so that I could better serve the unique needs of my students, while also providing more time and access to me as their teacher. I cannot express how important this transition was in helping me ensure that students were more successful in my classroom. While I started out with traditional lecture, it was the barrage of questions and confusion from students on homework that caused me great alarm. I knew what I was doing wasn't benefiting students.

As I transitioned to Flipped Learning, I quickly became a fan of how collaborative students became. They started asking each other questions, using each other as resources, and providing support in difficult projects. It afforded me the opportunity to really get to know my students on a different level and serve them by tailoring my activities and lessons to their interests. It allowed me to meet with students to know what holds them back from being successful and how to help them see they are capable of being good at math. Further, I can check in with 'advanced' students to know how I can challenge them a little more.

I've learned and grown so much over the years using Flipped Learning. While I initially thought it would help me to be more available to answer their questions and confusion, I've realized there is a greater opportunity to serve each student on an individual level - to show them I genuinely care for who they are, what they want to do, and how they can achieve any goal they set out to complete. Serving students has become a passion that I cannot deny. I enjoy finding ways to engage them in math and learning, while also seeing them for who they are! The art of teaching, in my opinion, has become about getting to know each and every student as an individual and helping them pursue success in life. 

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