Thursday, March 7, 2013

Ask a Stupid Question...

Teachers like to say things like "there's no such thing as a dumb question."

That is false.

There are dumb questions. And sometimes we teachers ask the dumbest ones of all.


I mean, when giving a test or quiz or even just asking a question in class, we teachers sometimes ask our students really, really ridiculous questions. (Okay, maybe it's just me...but I doubt it.) Sometimes I think it's because we aren't really thinking about what we want our students to know and understand and be able to do. Or even if we do think about these things, we don't think enough about how to have students share their knowledge, understanding, or skills. One thing I'm really trying to keep in front of me is to assess what matters, not just what is easy.

An example? Carry on, dear reader...

Knowing that I love stuff like this, my friend Sherri emailed me the graphic below. As a former science teacher, I laughed. I think we teachers should expect creative, thoughtful students to be affronted by silly questions like this, and give us responses like the one below. (Personally, I would give the kid an "A" for this answer...but I'd probably talk with him after class too.)

I did a little searching online for a source for this one. I found it here and here and
here, so I don't know who to credit. Ah, the difficulties of proper attribution...

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