Thursday, February 11, 2016

Let Them Fail

If kids don’t learn early on how to handle them on their own, if they are regularly rescued by well-meaning teachers and parents, then they won’t develop the skills needed to tackle difficult things or bounce back from setbacks.  
                                                       By, Lory Hough from the article Mistakes Were Made

The above quote was taken from the article, Mistakes Were Made which appeared on I opened the article thinking I'd be reading something I agreed with - something reaffirming. A piece that would provide me with a support to my own philosophy.

(That thinking in itself is dangerous and moves to trap us in our own filter bubbles. A resolution of mine was to try, and, for the most part, I have begun to burst my own filter bubble. Unfortunately, that has given me more exposure to Donald Trump than I would prefer.)

No reason, other than I drew it myself with testing out Paper53

Anyway, halfway through the article I was thinking about my own class and how I deal with mistakes my students make.

Namely the mistake of plagiarism.

I teach early high school students MYP Design Technology and I have run into a few times this year where students copy work they find online. Sometimes it has been obvious, other times less so, and other times still, when there is only a suspicion of plagiarism.

Each time I encounter this situation I ask myself: How could the student not know this is wrong and I wouldn't find out.

After reading the above article, though, I am now wondering if I should ask myself: How many chances should students get? Should they be allowed to redo the assignment? Should they be docked any points at all, or should they have a chance at a redo?

How does my philosophy of the school as a laboratory where failure leads to learning fit in?

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