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Beat Boredom: Engaging Tuned-Out Teenagers 1st Edition
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Recently I had the opportunity to observe Martha Rush, at Mounds View High School, teaching an AP Macro Economics class. I went to observe her class because of a few Tweets I saw her principal, Stephanie Bruggers (MPA Alum), re-tweet about #no lecture... I was intrigued and needed to see for myself if this was real. It was. I observes 35 9th graders highly engaged in learning while carrying the cognitive load. I actually wanted to video Martha's class because all three findings from How People Learn were playing out in that classroom!
It turns out Martha is not just a "gifted" teacher, but her approach to instruction has come through a lot of study and trail and error. She has written a book Beat Boredom where she outlines 6 comprehensive teaching approaches to engage students in learning. (Storytelling, Discussion and debate, Problem-based learning, Simulation, Competition, and Authentic tasks) Martha's writing is unique in that (a) She is a practicing teacher who is actually doing what she writes about in a real live classroom on a Tuesday (b) She cites research and situates it in vignettes of actual classrooms here in Minnesota and across the nation (c) And most importantly - Her message is humble, honest and, vulnerable, making it very accessible for teachers. [Admittedly, it has a secondary focus]