Thursday, June 11, 2015

Learn Like a Pirate {Common Concerns about Student-Led Classrooms}

This week for our book study, we are talking all things Chapter 2 from Learn Like A Pirate! Solarz begins by assuring us that student-led classrooms can work and will not create a ton of challenges on the teacher! I am finding it easy to take Solarz's word for it, because he speaks like a real teacher - not someone who is out of touch with what is going on in the classroom. 

For example, he says, "I've heard from many teachers who want to create a better learning experience for their students but find this unfamiliar territory somewhat scary." I am in this boat! Of course new things will be scary in the classroom. Teachers know there is no time to waste when it comes to the minutes we have with our students. 

Because Solarz has heard from other real teachers, he has dedicated this chapter to giving a voice to common concerns that teachers have about instituting the student-led classroom.

There are 13 concerns in this chapter. I love that Solarz gives affirmations to us as to why the student-led classroom can work and why it's a best practice for teachers.

This concern stood out to me because I typically hear from my colleagues each year that they have a student who they need to work with daily on social skills. "Some students seem to have a knack for disruption" as Solarz puts it.

I found it reassuring that Solarz says, "even the most troubled students fare amazing well in a student-led environment." With proper feedback and daily discussions, students quickly understand their role as a learner in the classroom. This is about E.M.P.O.W.E.R.M.E.N.T. !!!!!!!

I found this chapter to be very helpful because as teachers, we ALL have concerns and aren't they what really come to our mind first whenever we are about to dive into something new? I find that most teachers want to voice their concerns first, before  taking a deep breath, and then jumping aboard onto a new instructional ship! Well, Captains...... WE GOT THIS!


  1. Hi Melissa! I LOVE reading what you are writing about "Learn Like a PIRATE!" It is very positive, optimistic, encouraging and inspiring! Thanks for reading my book and for posting your thoughts on your blog! I look forward to reading again next week!

  2. I agree with you Melissa! I'm always a little nervous to start something new but feel confident in the success of student-led classrooms after reading this chapter. The author writes as if to say, "I've been there, but it will be alright!", sort of tone. I'm looking forward to this week's chapter!