After reading Gatto’s essay, I was so empowered and amazed. She is such a great teacher, and example after example is able to create a community of learners environment for her students, where they truly are enthusiastic about learning. Since most of the activities she did in her classes came from her students questions, the kids were engaged and interested in the subject matter. This is a great way to make them involved in the learning process! Why aren’t more teachers doing this? Also, the fact that schools mandate teachers to teach from certain books is crazy. Gatto said, “How would any company know what words my students need for their writing and reading? I do not even know until it comes up, and it is never the same from year to year” (p.19). She is right; how can a book company possibly know what students need to learn? Each student learns differently, and only after time, can a teacher recognize their learning style and know their strengths and weaknesses. Why are companies determining what schools teach? If the teachers are the ones who really know their students, why aren’t they coming up with the curriculum?
She also mentioned that in order to create a meaningful community environment for students, teachers need to collaborate together, to share ideas and affective strategies. We mentioned this in class that having a support system is really important to being a successful teacher. How are we supposed to create this support system, if teacher’s doors are closed all the time? I think we need to just break out of our shell, and get involved with other teachers so that we can all learn from each other.