Thursday, June 20

Teach Like a Pirate-- Immersion

One of the strategies talked about it Teach Like a Pirate is immersion.  As in completely immersing yourself into you classroom, kids and lesson. The author defines it as fully being with your students.  I think KNOW there are times I'm not completely immersed into my students.  I might be working with students, but I have one eye on the rest of the class, plus I'm figuring out when I'm going to fill out the attendance, plus thinking about the parent conference coming up, etc, etc, etc.

I took my son to the movie theater yesterday.  While we were there, I began to think that going to the movies is a complete practice in immersion.  You have to turn your cell phone off, so there go the distractions.  While I was cuddled up under the blanket (it gets really cold) with popcorn in hand, I was completely immersed in that experience.  I laughed.  I giggled.  I was sharing a great experience with my son.

Then Michael needed to use the restroom.  Standing outside the bathroom, I check my phone.  I had a message from a friend, to which I replied.  We exchanged messages while Michael was in the bathroom.  When he came out, we went back to the theater.  We cuddled under the blanket and picked up the popcorn-- we returned to our experience.  Just because things looked the same, didn't mean they were the same.  You see, I was no longer IMMERSED in that movie.  I was watching and I laughed at the funny parts, but I was distracted.  My mind was only half paying attention- the other half was thinking about the conversation I had with my friend.

This morning, I read this article.  This is another way we prevent ourselves from being IMMERSED in an experience.  Right now, I have close to 1000 pictures on my cell phone.  And no plans to do anything with most of them...

This summer, I'm going to practice immersing myself into what I'm doing.  I know it will be difficult.  For me, the biggest difficulty will be putting down the gadgets.  When I go back to school, I am determined to immerse myself into my classroom.

What is YOUR big distraction?  What keeps you from immersing yourself?

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