Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Comments for Kim's Wk3 Reading Blog Post

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  1. Kim,

    Excellent parallel between orchestra conducting and classroom teaching. I distinctly recall those passages from this week's reading as well, as it was a pure stroke of genius on the Zanders's part to allow his musicians to not only perfect Zander's craft, yet expand their own individual opportunities for success. I was even taken aback in intrigue when Zander admitted an error on his behalf. Similarly, the flipped classroom is a genuine model to inspire greatness, synthesis of content, and application of mastery in our students. Kudos for being an empowering educator and leader by dedicating your success by your students' success, and thank you for sharing your fantastic insights on this week's readings.


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Week 3 reading post: Art of Possibility chapters 5 to 9

Image from Clipart Mojo
I was very happy to find that Benjamin Zander revisits his notion of the “silent conductor” in the earlier part of this reading. (I say revisits because we were first exposed to this idea during his TED Talk on music and passion.) During the TED Talk, I was struck by his comment that a powerful conductor is one who can inspire greatness in his musicians; that the conductor’s success is not so much measure by what he does, but by what others do under his leadership. This idea extends easily to the profession of teaching. The most successful teacher is the one who inspires the greatest work from his students. And, I see the connection between conducting and teaching even more prominently, in fact, in my action research project that focuses on the flipped classroom. The overarching goal of flipping is to make the classroom more student-centered than teacher-centered. Zander describes how implementing small changes like allowing the orchestra members to contribute their insights to his musical interpretations made them feel empowered and valued. In the same way, I hope that flipping my classroom will enable me to work with and hear from more of my students, so that they see the material as more approachable and relatable than they might otherwise feel in a lecture-based class.

Zander, R. S., & Zander, B. (2000). The art of possibility [Electronic]. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press.

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