Today Matters » Future Heart Surgeons?

Future Heart Surgeons?

January 18, 2019
Over my years in education, many parents have expressed the desire to be able to see what their child is actually doing during a school day, in a way that wouldn’t obstruct their learning or affect their natural behavior. How is their child behaving in class? How are they interacting with their peers and teachers? Does their face light up when they begin to understand something or master a skill? In general, what does my child’s education look like today?
Unless you’ve been in one of our buildings recently to have a first-hand glimpse, many would assume that learning looks the same way now as it did when we were in school. I spent a great deal of time in each school building, at multiple grade levels, throughout the first half of the school year. I was continually amazed by what I saw. How could I convey this to our parents so they could share in the excitement of learning that our students are experiencing? As the New Year began, I continued to wrestle with the best way to show how dynamic learning is within our District 142 schools. Equipped with an iPad, I ventured over to Hille Middle School recently to take a look around. What I found was some exceptional instruction, that really did not look like anything I remembered from my own education. Below is a short video I took on my own, completely unannounced, on an impromptu trip through Hille Middle School.
What I love about this video is that no one knew I was coming. This was no special project that was being conducted because I was in the building. This is really what learning looks like in our District 142 schools. Who would have thought that a quartet of boys could program a robot to accurately work its way through the chambers of a model heart. Who knows, these boys may be the doctors who someday perform this procedure on an actual patient! As we plant seeds of possibility in students now, there is no telling how it may shape their future. It has to start somewhere. We have to spark interest. We have to let students explore and learn in ways that are relevant to them. And I am proud to say that we are instilling these glimpses of the future in our students every single day in District 142. I’ve seen it in action, beyond just this video clip I’ve shared here.
I view this blog as a way of validating our Board of Education’s, Administrators’, Teachers’, and Staff’s work. It shows that what they’re doing is interesting, relevant, and most certainly causes students to become curious about the topic they’re exploring. The above video clip is just one of thousands of moments of learning and mastery that happen over the course of a District 142 school year.