In Spanish class, I’ve learned (still learning really) that if I want my students to learn more, I have to slow down.

 If I want language to really live in their bodies, hearts and minds, I can’t rush them through long vocabulary lists, decontextualized grammar practice and inauthentic tasks.

In the pottery studio, before you can make an object on the potters wheel, it must be centered. It is also counterintuitive but true that the more clay you put on the wheel head, the slower you go to center it. 

Slow, deliberate delivery of interesting, repetitive language is the recipe for acquisition. Likewise, slow wheel speed, deliberate pressure, and patience is the recipe for centering 25 pounds of clay. 

  

It May Be Counterintuitive 

4 thoughts on “It May Be Counterintuitive 

  • February 20, 2016 at 5:26 pm
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    This is my struggle. Working on it, but it is a constant battle with myself.

    Reply
  • February 21, 2016 at 9:09 am
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    This is a brilliant analogy! May I use it with due credit to enlighten parents?

    Reply
    • February 21, 2016 at 10:29 am
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      Yes, Kim, of course!! and plz send me an update when you get a chance!

      Reply

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