Green light for teachers to move with the times

ORANGE teachers were pulled out of the Stone Age and thrown into a new era of rock’n’roll through professional development workshops this week.
Nanjing Night Net

Dr Rick Allen, an American educational psychologist who taught maths at the same school as United States president Barack Obama, spoke to hundreds of public school teachers about the importance of changing with students and leaving traditional teaching methods behind.

The program is called Green Light Classrooms.

“Red light stands for teachers who haven’t changed when students have,” he said.

“Students need to stand up more, talk more, play music.”

Dr Allen said the natural behaviour of children was to talk with friends, run around and be active and classrooms needs to adopt the same theory.

“Traditional teaching is devoid of emotions,” he said.

He bases his model on brain-based learning theories that show people can only concentrate for up to 10 minutes.

Teachers need to learn to teach in short bursts and reward students for success with music and dancing.

“Students need to feel successful as often as they can,” Dr Allen said.

“They need to be rewarded with a big dance, it’s quick and easy and they need to know yeah, we rocked.”

Orange school education director Paul Stirling said Dr Allen’s approach to learning was based on an appreciation that today’s students are “digital natives” whose brains are hardwired differently.

“They have grown up in a fast-paced world of digital technology,” Mr Stirling said.

“Dr Allen believes that they have shorter attention spans and are used to learning through self discovery.

“Success comes from different teaching strategies and he has found success wordwide by engaging students in interactive and brain-based learning.”

NEW AGE: Dr Rick Allen spoke to teachers at Canobolas Rural Technology High School on Tuesday about staying clear of traditional teaching methods. 0430nkdrallen

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