Teacher Advocacy Group at McNeese State University

Toward the Getting of Ideas

There is one thing I know for sure. That is, the notion that "if you get the idea right, the specific skill will come" (Ohanian, 2004. p. 117). I like this. A lot. It tells me that teachers are the source of innovation and idea-making. Where do innovative ideas come from? More to the point, where do we look and who do we look to in search of solutions to teaching and learning challenges? If we believe publishers of textbooks, ancillary supplements and testing materials, we are likely to think good ideas come from things we can buy. As ubiquitous, and sometimes tempting, as those things are, they are not the panacea of good ideas for teaching and learning. Rather, oft times they create impoverishing teaching practice that cause harm in the intellectual and academic lives of students. See for example, "I Follow The Blue..: A Primary Teacher and the Impact of Packaged Curricula" (Crawford, 2004).

It is perhaps within teachers' work together we are best suited for idea-making and the power of our ideas become most potent when we coalesce around common goals and challenges. I believe TAG creates a space for this kind of idea-making.

Please make TAG part of your professional "posse" as you seek support for your work in becoming the teacher your students deserve. TAG gives us a space to collectively move toward and stake claim to the getting of powerful ideas. We will start meeting again each month on Wednesdays, 5:30-7:00ish in FH 216 so make it a part of your personal and professional commitment. Bring your dilemmas of practice, curriculum needs, and strong idea-making dispositions with you. I am looking forward to working and learning with you.

Crawford, P. (2004). I follow the blue...: A primary teacher and the impact of packaged curricula. Early Childhood Journal, 32(3), 205-210.

Ohanian, S. (2004). On stir-and-serve recipes for teaching. In Canestrari, A.S. & Marlowe B.A. (Eds.) Educational foundations: An anthology of critical readings (p. 112-119). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

100 Famous People and OPMS

Three Chinese artists painted a picture of 100 famous people they would invite to dinner and the end result is a provocative and intellectually stimulating painting that has become an Internet sensation.

Click on the quote to see the painting and a "Who's Who" key can be found here.

"Josef Stalin and Leonardo da Vinci are deep in conversation, Vladimir Putin rests his legs next to a sprawled Mike Tyson, while Margaret Thatcher – clutching her handbag – looks on with disdain."

Mimi Wallace, Ph.D.

McNeese State University

Burton College of Education

Department of Education Professions

Farrar Hall, 217

Box 91815

Lake Charles, LA 70609