Spirit Magazine - October 2013 - (Page 24)

Your Words Dear Spirit, I was expecting a fluff piece on learning in the digital age when I read “Flipped Out” [August 2013]. Instead, Flipped I was treated to a fanOut tastically written and well-researched article quoting cutting-edge practitioners like Marc Seigel, Dr. Gary Small, and Dr. Judy Willis. We truly are wrestling with a sea change in education that writer Jennifer Miller describes so well. When students can Google answers to almost any question, what is the purpose of education? The piece provides the correct answer: Teach students to think. In the Digital Age, learning is no longer fundamental— at least as it was defined by the old school. Now, some basics of education are being rethought, and the meaning of “homeroom” has changed forever. In by jennifer miller illustration by orlin culture shop 72 spirit august 2013 september 2010, Marc Seigel, a chemistry teacher at Middletown High School South, in a middle-class enclave of northern New Jersey, thought he’d found a way to engage students who’d rather text under their desks than pay attention to him. In a publication from the National Science Teachers Association, Seigel read about the so-called flipped classroom, a forward-thinking educational model that inverts the norm: What would customarily be defined as homework (problem sets, essay writing, etc.) is done by students during class hours, with a teacher’s supervision and handson input; and what was once the core of the classroom experience (teacher lectures, delineated lesson plans) is now absorbed at home via video tutorials. After teaching in the traditional way for 10 years, Seigel had grown bored. The 35-year-old is short, stocky, and balding, but far less nebbishy than he appears. In front of a group of kids, he’s a fast-talking fireball, not unlike the famously motormouthed Micro Machines pitchman from the ’80s; he’s even got the guy’s mustache. august 2013 spirit 73 —STEVE SCHMIDT BOONE , NORTH CAROLINA We’re glad the fluff had meat behind it, Steve. Your summation of the changes in education show you’ve learned a thing or two about thinking. SEND ’EM IN Write to us at 2811 McKinney Ave., Suite 360, Dallas, TX 75204 or email letters@ spiritmag.com. For comments or questions directed at Southwest Airlines that don’t pertain to Spirit, please visit the “Contact Us” page at southwest.com. Our favorite letter each month wins a Spirit diner mug. Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/spiritmag Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/ spiritmagazine SHARING KNOWLEDGE I look forward to the well-written articles in each edition of Spirit whenever I fly Southwest. The August 2013 issue, and “Flipped Out” in particular, was no exception. As a former elementary school teacher, I agree that in order to impact the hearts and minds of students, educators must be able to build confidence as well as facilitate knowledge with the help of technology. I plan to share the piece with my colleagues and check out some of the books, too. —T H A N H L O A N N G U Y E N H U N T I N G T O N B E A C H , C A L I FO R N I A Thanks for sharing! 24 SPIRIT OCTOBER 2013 LIFE FLIP Marc Seigel was wise to pay attention to his boredom after teaching the traditional way for 10 years. He was bold and brave to figure out ways to cure the boredom by trying something different: the flipped classroom. During our daughter’s seventh and eighth grade years, our family decided to flip not just a classroom but our lives. We took a two-year break from the traditional classroom for reasons cited in this article: too much testing, too much irrelevant homework, an over-reliance on textbooks, etc. You could call what we did homeschooling, but because one of us is a professor we called it a sabbatical. What does one do during a sabbatical? Behave like Marc Seigel. There were no tests and no textbooks, but lots of reading, writing, and conversations. We hiked, biked, danced, and walked. We planted a garden. After two years, all three of us—not just our daughter—felt smarter, healthier, and happier. A remark our daughter made in the sixth grade rings true: “You know, there’s a certain part about getting good at something that involves loving it.” Learning (and teaching) is all about loving. — PA M E L A B E E R E B R I G G S LOS ANGELES What a great idea to give the kids a sabbatical. Now we at Spirit are thinking how we can do that… FELINE UNFRIENDLY I was very disappointed to read the article about the James Cristy Cole Circus [“The Greatest Show http://www.southwest.com http://www.facebook.com/spiritmag http://www.facebook.com/spiritmag http://www.twitter.com/spiritmagazine http://www.twitter.com/spiritmagazine

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Spirit Magazine - October 2013

Spirit Magazine - October 2013
Gary’s Greeting
Star of the Month
Freedom Story
From the Editor
Your Words
Your Pictures
Media Center
Eat Drink Sleep
The Numbers
Be Here Now
Don’t Just Stand There
Your Adventure In San Jua
Promotional Series: Florida: Full of Surprises
Your Adventure In San Juan
Promotional Series: Focus on Women’s Health
Promotional Series: Focus on Franchises
Community Outreach
Products & Services
Flight Service
Terminal Maps
Rapid Rewards and A+ Rewards Partners
Route Map
The “If” List

Spirit Magazine - October 2013