I am a class teacher for Year Four and five students and a team leader for the middle school. My class and I are a part of the Manaiakalani Google ClassOnAir.

Monday, 15 August 2016

The Learning Pit

I have been feeling so bad that I have not posted for the last two months. There have been piles and piles of things to post but I have not done this in spite of several reminders that I have written to myself on pieces of paper here and there. Life at school has been full of activity and it is always a feeling of accomplishment after blogging about it. I guess, today I am feeling so guilty that I need to put this out to the world so that there are no more excuses left for me for not blogging.

So I will start with what happened today...

We had a staff meeting with Sue Pine on Maths.
Now let me first tell you that everything in Maths has changed from what we used to do three or four years ago. Now we have this new approach where we are required to teach Maths through problem solving. To add to this there are other new things like talk moves and number talks that encourage students to collaboratively solve Maths questions. Teachers need to plan for  Maths lessons in such a way that they strike a balance between all these things for students to accelerate in Maths. As this approach is new, some of the teachers are finding it hard to adapt to the new style and felt the need to revert to the old ways where Maths was mainly  procedural.

After listening to our frustrations, Sue described this as a learning pit and she said that good learners go in a pit and it is okay to go in a pit.  When we are in the pit, we feel frustrated, angry and confused. We want to quit because we do not understand. We feel lost and distracted and sometimes can become very chatty and moan about our failures.


 when we are in the pit, we try harder.  We working together and with each others' support we try to get out of the pit. We ask ourselves questions, find different ways to solve our problems, consider and consult our situation with others, understand what mistakes we made and what opportunities we let go, what better ways we could have attempted to solve the problem. This rigorous exercise helps us to refine our ways and we come out successful and accomplished.
So my learning for the day is that we should not be afraid of failures as because these are the building blocks to our success.


  1. You are back posting, yay! You have accurately described how some of us were feeling; confused, folding back to procedural, lost - I know at times I have definitely felt that way. I love your explanation of how we can get out of the pit - TOGETHER!

  2. Hi Archana, I enjoy and learn so much from your posts. It helps me to reflect on the work I do with teachers.