The words teachers use can change students lives
After growing up and launching his teaching career in New Zealand Peter Johnston headed for the US to continue his study by undertaking a Ph.D. at the University of Illinois.
Introducing a spelling test to a student by saying, 'Let's see how many words you know,' is different from saying, 'Let's see how many words you know already.' It is only one word, but it already suggests that any words the child knows are ahead of expectation and, most important, that there is nothing permanent about what is known and not known."
Sometimes a single word changes everything. In his groundbreaking book, Choice Words, Peter Johnston demonstrated how the things teachers say (and don't say) have surprising consequences for the literate lives of students. Now, in his latest book, Opening Minds: Using Language to Change Lives, Peter shows how the words teachers choose affect the worlds students inhabit in the classroom, and ultimately their futures. He explains how to engage children with more productive talk and to create classrooms that support not only students' intellectual development, but their development as human beings.
Grounded in research, Opening Minds: Using Language to Change Lives shows how words can shape students' learning, their sense of self, and their social, emotional and moral development. Make no mistake: words have the power to open minds – or close them. Find out more about Peter, both books and also review them online.
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