A message about community…

Creating a classroom community seems to be the latest “buzz” word as it is popping up in all of my classes this semester. I was lucky enough to take a session entitled “Creating Community: Curriculum in Kind” during the (E)merging Professionalism Conference at the beginning of the month. This session, lead by Karen Lind and Wendy Willis (two great professors at the U of R) focused on strategies for building relationships in the classroom. Although I learnt a lot about how to go about creating community, I walked away with some lingering questions about the burning need for community in a differentiated classroom. Today I had an “Aha! Moment” I felt like I had put the pieces of the puzzle together after reading a Chapter from Social Studies for Social Justice and participating in an a community circle discussion with my peers. Even in a differentiated classroom where students are busy working in small groups on various tasks that meet their own learning needs, without a strong sense of classroom community they are not able take risks in a safe environment. To put it simply, when students don’t feel safe for any reason, they cannot learn.

AHA! See the importance of classroom community?!

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2 thoughts on “A message about community…

  1. Aha! Now I get it! Although I am not an educator, I have been hearing the buzz about Classroom Communities from several family members who are involved in Education. I must admit, I didn’t really get it. But I love how you summarized your understanding of it. Now it makes sense to me. Thank you for that Allie!

  2. I completely agree with you Allie!! From my internship experience in a Kindergarten classroom, it is so true that students cannot learn without feeling safe. That explains why the first two weeks of school must be used to simply get to know the kids…and why I will never expect a substitute teacher to teach a new concept to my students – it will just not stick. I believe that, as teachers, we must not only provide a safe classroom community, but also build genuine relationships with those around us in order to promote learning.

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