Tuesday, September 16, 2014

[soo-per-pou-er]




For those of you who are parents, or have been around a newborn, you can relate to the discovery of language use.  Recently I was witness to a discussion in the faculty room about the value of a video baby monitor.  The individual asking is about to become a first time father.  Without hesitation, the newest mommy at the table "humpfed" and said "you don't need to waste your money on that.  You'll know the cry in a few days."  The parents around the table nodded in agreement and supported this analysis -- for we all knew that our experiences even though the baby couldn't talk, he or she could, most certainly, communicate.  There's the "I'm wet" , "I'm hungry" , "I'm in pain," "I'm bored" cries that cause parents to learn to react with a different set of reaction times.  If only the same skills of observation worked for high school students.

Te@chthought's prompt for today, (which is more than halfway through the month, I might add!), is:

Day 16
If you could have one superpower to use in the classroom, what would it be and how would it help?

Imagine the ability to read the minds of everyone in the class as an instant means of formative assessment!   Part of my reflection on this has me remembering that scene in Bruce Almighty where Jim Carrey's character is bombarded by hundreds of prayers simultaneously, and wondering if my desire to be a SuperMindReader is something that should be tossed aside and immediately incinerated by an alternative spontaneous combustion with xray eyes power, but I'm wandering too far down the rabbit hole at this point.  The reality is, any superpower that would aid in communication, (or confirming the lack thereof), is the ultimate dream. 

If you ask any person on the planet what the biggest problem they have in their family, workplace, small group, church, or club, the discussion will eventually get back to a downfall in communication.  Certainly we are at a time and place in history where many argue that we have too many communication "devices" that we are failing to communicate as people are/were intended.  Communication deficiencies are as old as Moses -- there was that whole Tower of Babel gang -- and the struggle to understand one and other is universal.

Mindreading would allow the shyest student in the class to be heard.  Or, at least, offer the classroom teacher enough of a mind's eye into the quiet student to find a piece of common ground to draw that student into the conversation.  Wait time, mentioned previously in this blog, would be reduced, as the non-participants who had the right answer could be coaxed into risk-taking and answering.

Of course, I'd like to be stealth about this power.  In order for it to be successful, the mind-readeees would need not know that their thoughts were not their own.  So for now, mum's the word.  Okay?