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Powerful Ways for Turning The Nations High Schools Into a Success
A Community Perspective
A community perpective will show high school students how important they are to society, now and in the future. Values such as vision, leadership and hard work need to be internalized within the minds and hearts of this next generation.
One of the keys to maintaining good behavior standards in high school begins with abandoning the teaching as usual approach. Instead of the normal routine of sitting and listening to teachers all day, students should be exposed to new styles of learning. The learning environment must be non- traditional. There are several ways to establish this kind of environment.
Community Focused Students
Today's high school students should be taught to be community focused. They must be aware that they are the future of the community and must acquire and maintain great values. Therefore, the community must be brought into the classroom. Business leaders, government officials, white and blue collar workers, and parents must pump up their school involvement. Eighty percent of the time many high school students misbehave in the classroom because they have no vision or goal when they come to school. For example I have been a teacher for twelve years and have studied the behavior of students who came to class with purpose and those that didn't have clue why they were there, except by the will of their parents.
Attending school with purpose makes the difference between receiving a grade A or C. Purpose driven students are focused and completes assignments with interest and enthusiasm. But students without goals or purposes are not motivated in the classroom and struggles with paying attention. Off focus activities includes playing with pencil, cell phones or iPods, daydreaming, and drawing on paper etc.
Participating In Community
Nevertheless, teachers must continue to emphasize that growth and progress are key goals of the community. When a community or a society prospers the job market grows as well. Local community leaders must be willing to provide hands on experience for the students. They must provide a way for students to experience what its like to be in a business setting. Even fire fighters who visit the class room must invite students to spend a day at the fire station in order to know what's involved in fighting fires. These kinds of activities are what I define as bringing the community into the classroom.
Participating in business and community programs can give high school students a sense of responsibility. This also helps them to stay future focused. It allows them to be aware that something serious is at stake if school isn't taken seriously-the future of the American society. Students must realize that without a good education, they will contribute to the failure of their community.
Moreover, the administration and the teachers must make sure that students understand that a school day is an opportunity for great learning experience. In the classroom you learn to respect the teacher and one another.
Classroom & Commmunity
Does Your High School Bring the Community into the Classroom?
In the hallway, you learn to respect the rules and other classes. On the playground you learn to interact respectfully and safely with others. In the cafeteria you eat 'drink and talk with decently and manners. All students must be aware that they are on a learning adventure that will test their decision making and help build their characters. This knowledge will give them a purpose and there will be less time to misbehave in class. The entire day will be exciting and full of activities. This will in turn give students a feeling of intrinsic worth.
A Village Affair
When parents and teachers and the community work together to educate children, the sky is the limit. Students will believe highly in themselves and make greater efforts to achieve excellence.
However, the teachers and parents must also set limits on behavior and follow up with consequences on students who deliberately make wrong choices. For the teacher, this may include taking away recess or gym time; it could mean Saturday school, or suspension. For a parent, natural consequences should include temporary house arrest, suspension of television and internet, and writing a letter of apology to the teacher and fellow students for not acting respectful.
The Grand Partnership
But many disciplinary actions can be avoided if teachers and administrators allow learning to be a community adventure. Non traditional or community based teaching offers students a glimpse into the real world. They become not only observers but participants. They realize that they play a vital role in the progress of society and this gives will give them an extra incentive to maintain high behavior standards.