Cannes or Cannot?

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Whilst a game of charades is being played in Cannes and the facades continue all over the world, what we are dealing with here in the local of Salzburg is a state of how to remember that teaching the next generation is not about starting where you are, but about starting where the students are.  This means taking a whole different approach to learning and teaching.  If you are teacher centered, you will only respond to students that are like you, that can execute your wishes, as you would.  Teaching needs to be about taking it further.  As a teacher, you must be prepared to look beyond those that just respond in the way you like and the way you expect and you have a responsibility as a teacher to reach out to everyone in your class so that they can find their own way, often in the least way that you would expect.  The gem is that the teacher then learns something too.
     So often professionals are good at what they do, but these teaching methods that are often so nuanced are underrated and overlooked.  It takes experience, practice and awareness to recognise that you have to let creativity go it`s own way and students learning take you to someplace else.  This is real dialogical learning.
     Take the video above for example.  Some of the girls respond to the style that they have been taught quicker than others. This is not because they are anymore intelligent or any better than others, it is only that they are closer to the teacher`s expected outcome.  What both students and teacher would do well  to realise is that the outcome is not to do as expected, but to go beyond into the unexpected, creating new forms of knowledge and as the case is here-art.  Otherwise the result on both sides is frustration and the students are forced to accept that there is a dominant expectation and anything that falls short of this is de-valued and discarded.  This does not mean though that we should just ignore the curriculum that has been set up, it means devising a curriculum that has clear outcomes, yet that are flexible enough to weave in and out of the students centered development.  Complicated?  Quite-this is precisely why teachers need to be paid more, for all these details that are so often overlooked but that are essential.
      As teachers it is important not fall into the same mistakes of our own schooling that forced us into an army of ants, that had to follow a known route or die lonely and isolated away from the troop.
   In Cannes, world leaders sit on their fences, blaming Greece and going to back to an old form of scape-goat Nationalism instead of recognising a failed capitalism.  Surely the focus needs to be on changing the mode of production, on a local level we must make these changes ourselves.  It`s now in our hands to reorganize ourselves, instead of copying tried and failed routes, or are we to sit and wait like the world leaders in Cannes-cannot land blaming the one "nation" that doesn`t fall into dominant line to the confusion of outsiders who cannot make head Obama or tail of it.  What you do on a local level does have a larger impact, so if we continue to lead the next generation in to a field of dominant favoritism and Great Expectations, we may find ourselves back again, like Charles Dickens in Hard Times. 

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