Turning your passions into powerful learning for your students

I recently came across a great article in Education Week that encourages educators to bring their passions and life experiences to the classroom to take their teaching to the next level. The author, teacher Nancy Barile, credits her classroom success to her punk rock past.

Ms. Barile explains how the punk rock community would challenge prejudice, and hatred of any kind. Today she uses those same principles to encourage her students to challenge conflicting data, complicated politics, and intense societal pressures.

 “I want to equip my kids with the skills necessary to understand perspectives and cultures, to comprehend and critique, and to demonstrate independence,” says Ms. Barile.

Whether its punk rock or football, hobbies or past life experiences, they can be catalysts to motivate students and teach them new things. 

In the article Ms. Barile offers five things to consider when incorporating your passion into the curriculum. One of them is this: Ensure your experience encourages your students to develop their own interests and hobbies in and outside of school.