Wednesday, May 15, 2013

for a lifetime and beyond

Yesterday I finished the book Teach Like A Pirate by Dave Burgess.

I had hesitated in reading it because... teach like a pirate? Arrrgh. 

But the praising reviews kept coming and the subtitle - Increase Student Engagement, Boost Your Creativity, and Transform Your Life as an Educator - had me curious.

Teach Like a Pirate did not disappoint. And like Mr. Burgess says in the book: 
Teaching like a pirate has nothing to do with the dictionary definition and everything to do with the spirit. Pirates are daring, adventurous, and willing to set forth into uncharted territories with no guarantee of success.

Be a daring teacher! Let every student experience the joy of creativity.
Teaching is no longer about relaying the content's about transforming lives. It's about killing apathy. It's about helping the next generation fulfill their potential and become successful human beings. It's no longer about memorizing fact; it's about inspiring greatness.
After I read this book I knew that Dave Burgess had his newest, biggest fan... me.

Bring a breath of fresh air into your teaching. Invite your students in, get to know them, encourage spontaneity, engage them with purposeful activities, sit beside them, allow them to find an outlet for creative expression, have fun, try everything and learn from them.

For Mr. Burgess, a lesson on Abraham Lincoln becomes a lesson on persistence and overcoming adversity. The story of Rosa Parks teaches that a single, ordinary person with strong convictions, and the courage to act on those convictions, can transform history. A D-Day lesson is an opportunity to teach appreciation and gratitude for the sacrifices made by previous generations to secure the liberties that we often take for granted today. And the story of Malcolm X becomes a platform to express that no matter where they start in life, or how low they fall, each student can still, through the power of self-education and their own efforts, rise to greatness.

With nods to Seth Godin, Tony Robbins, Simon Sinek, The War of Art, and Daniel Pink... with creative alchemy and the power of asking good questions... this book must have been written from my gospel.

Seth Godin writes, "Something remarkable is worth talking about. Worth noticing. Exceptional. New. Interesting. It's a Purple Cow. Boring stuff is invisible. It's a brown cow."

Teach Like a Pirate is definitely a Purple Cow.
Follow Dave Burgess on twitter and keep learning @burgessdave ; you can also find him participating in #sschat

My favorite quote from Teach Like a Pirate:
Designing a class that empowers students to become life-long learners, avid readers, and voracious seekers of knowledge, will have an impact that reverberates for a lifetime and beyond.

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