[MOSAIC] Question from future teacher-Patrick

Renee phoenixone at sbcglobal.net
Tue Aug 7 11:42:24 EDT 2007

Hello Patrick,

Within your post, what I see is a basic question:  "Why throw out the  
baby with the bathwater?"

In a classroom, there are many choices a teacher needs to make, and  
many different teaching methods and strategies to choose from. Since  
all children do not learn the same way, or at the same pace, it's  
important to do everything we can to meet every child's needs. At the  
base of these choices, for me, is a question to myself: What does this  
really teach? For example, you mention copying vocabulary and  
definitions from a dictionary. It is my opinion that this does not  
really teach vocabulary in the most efficient way. It does address  
dictionary skills and something we used to call "near point copying"  
and maybe even penmanship. Do I think it harms anyone? No. Do I think  
it's the best use of time? Also, no.

You also mention self-esteem. For me, self-esteem is something far  
deeper, broader, and more far-reaching than making a child feel good  
"at this moment" (although that may be part of it). I also know that  
considering a child's self-esteem and teaching content are not mutually  

I think you are asking good questions, and hope you will continue to do  


On Aug 6, 2007, at 10:53 AM, Creecher12 at aol.com wrote:

> Here is my Question  For Mosaic Listserv Group. Thank you very  
> sincerely.
> -Patrick J.  Monette
> When  I was a kid, I had very little interest in reading and making  
> rich
> contextual  connections, but now I love to read and I don't know why  
> this
> happened. Though  I'm mostly ignorant of the reasons behind this  
> outcome, I'm almost
> certain that  what happened was in virtual absence of most of the  
> inscribed
> methodologies - in  their calculated form - presented in Mosaic. My  
> question,
> thus, is, How do  we discard things that we might consider to be  
> antiquated or
> outdated methods of instruction when they clearly worked for so many   
> in the
> past? For example, reading groups that were divided by different  
> reading
> ability levels. I was part of many a lower reading level in my day and  
> I feel  like
> I came out of these mostly unscathed. Further, I don't think that my
> self-esteem suffered all that much, but it's my opinion that  
> self-esteem is  immensely
> overrated anyway. Some of most terrible and evil tyrants in history,
> including Hitler and Mussolini, and some of the most notorious mob  
> bosses and  gang
> leaders, had - each of them - VERY high levels of self-esteem. I  
> believe  that
> one's values are a much greater determinant of one's character and   
> goodness,
> and should anything be given higher precedents than these? Also, if my
> self-esteem did take a hit, who's to say that this didn't benefit me  
> in any way?  -
> that it didn't give me thicker skin, make me stronger, build character  
> in me,
> etc.? But back to the regularly scheduled program… Although I’m not  
> sure if
> I  enjoyed looking up vocabulary words in the dictionary and writing  
> down
> their  definitions when I was a young bucking bronco, I’m not quite  
> ready to
> dismiss  this method of instruction as unprofitable because I think  
> that much of
> the  learning that was impressed on us in our younger days did so in  
> such subtle
> ways  that it would be impossible - indeed, unprofitable and maybe even
> harmful - to  say, simply, that this and other methods are either  
> great or
> worthless. Further,  I don’t think that they necessarily have to be  
> one or the other.
> Each alone may  just serve as another piece of the puzzle that,  
> combined with
> the many other  pieces, contributes to the mosaic, but by no means  
> completes
> it. That being  said, in all its presumptive vigor, I love what I've  
> read of
> Mosaic thus  far ;).
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"We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility. It's easy  
to say, 'It's not my child, not my community, not my world, not my  
problem.' Then there are those, who see the need and respond. I  
consider those people my heroes."
~ Fred Rogers

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