Wednesday, April 11, 2007

How do we choose our children's teachers

Most people want to to see that their children's teachers are well-trained; they want to know that they're paying for quality and often that quality is measured in university degrees.

Interestingly a recent study seems to indicate that the quality of instruction in elementary classrooms has little to do with the teachers credentials.

From Education Week :
"Detailed observations of 5th graders in 20 states show that students in classrooms overseen by teachers labeled as highly qualified spent most of their time in whole-group or individual “seatwork,” focused on basic skills rather than problem-solving activities, and may or may not have received emotional and instructional support from their teachers. "


  1. Doesn't surprise me. I always thought that my best teachers were the young, enthusiastic ones, rather than the senior "experts".

  2. It doesn't surprise me either -- but for a different reason. Many of the most "credentialed" people were successful students in the traditional setting themselves. If they learned "problem-solving" while being taught "basic skills," they may not realize that a different approach may be more effective for different kinds of students.