Teaching is Listening

Last week, our Early Math Team here at the AIMS Center partnered with Fresno EOC Head Start to spend a day devoted to children’s mathematics. I had the privilege of sharing a few thoughts at the beginning of the day to help shape our time and work together over the coming year. In this keynote, I suggested four ways that teachers who listen to children can begin to shape the culture of their classrooms.

  1. Listening honors the lived experiences of children.
  2. Listening acknowledges that children are actively constructing mathematical ideas.
  3. Listening acknowledges that children’s ways of thinking are different than adults’ ways of thinking.
  4. Listening gives voice to children’s mathematics and views it as a source of classroom activity.

Teaching as listening stands in contrast to teaching as telling. It positions learners as valuable contributors to the learning interactions in the classroom and has enormous potential to help us develop child-centered, equitable practices in our classrooms.

You can view the entire keynote here:

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