Amidst the discussions about content standards, curriculum and teaching strategies, it’s easy to lose sight of the big goals behind education, like giving students tools to deepen their quantitative and qualitative understanding of the world. Teaching for understanding has always been a challenge, which is why Harvard’s Project Zero has been trying to figure out how great teachers do it.
I’m struggling with students right now that don’t care about the why. They just want to know the how. When people ask me about common core, my standard response is that “it is to show the why”, which I’ve found is a difficult concept. What do I care about the why? Just tell me how to do it so I can do it and move on.
A good teacher helps you care about the why.