I found myself asking this question day. One of the most powerful questions a teacher can ask themselves: Why didn’t this work?
The truth is there were a lot of significant reasons I thought in my head, but since I had recently talked to my students about how sometimes things do not work, and we have to learn from it, I wanted to ask them…
“In case you didn’t notice, this lesson didn’t work! In fact, it was not even close! Why do you think we weren’t able to accomplish the goal we started with?”
I got some rather important feedback from my students. The first thing they said, was, ” this was kind of a long story.” For when I was teaching it and what I wanted them to get from it, they were probably right.
Next, one girl said, “our group didn’t start right away, walking from our seats to where we wanted to work and agreeing on that took so long that we forgot a lot of the details.” (I had originally planned it for the groups to already be in their spots, but things got off track and mixed up- it happens!)
With two quick comments from my students I learned two valuable things about my lesson. Not only did my 1st grade students offer me valuable teaching advice for next time, but I also showed them that there is always something to be learned from failing, that we all make mistakes, and tomorrow we will try again, making the necessary adjustments to succeed. Will it work? I believe it will (if I didn’t why even try) but I also know that if it doesn’t I will learn from it, and my students can help guide me toward being more successful!
You can never fail, only take opportunities to learn and get better!