Let’s Rewind

October 6, 2015

Miriam Greenberg, Director of Education and Communications, shares the importance of video technology to teacher feedback in the following HGSE Usable Knowledge blog post.

There are critical moments in every educator’s career when a remote control would come in handy. Years ago, while teaching first generation college-bound high school students in San Francisco, I reprimanded a student for not bringing pen and notebook paper to class. A small argument set off a whirlwind chain of events that ended with my student flipping her desk and storming out. By the time my administrator arrived for support, it was too late. I did my best to retell the events of the hour, but I was shell-shocked. What had happened? What did I do wrong? Would she come back? 

Researchers and educators agree that feedback about classroom practice must be specific and job-embedded in order to be valuable. It was not enough for my administrator to tell me, months later, that I needed to work on my enforcement of rules and procedures and to direct me to some loosely related resources about classroom management. I needed to examine the particular events and root causes that culminated in flying furniture and slamming doors. I often wish I could rewind that day, press pause, and pinpoint how I could have de-escalated the situation.


Continue reading at www.gse.harvard.edu