One of the most beautiful things of being alive, to my mind, is to have the perceptions of the world around you shaken and turned and twisted upside down, again and again. This inner Revolution is what makes us learn about new perspectives and it shapes you as a human being.

This is what happened to my professional self at the very first day as a participant / presenter at the 16th Braz Tesol International Conference. I had the opportunity to watch an amazing trio composed by Mirela Ramaciotti, Grazielle Noro and Cyntia Bailer in a special interest group (SIG) called Mind, Brain and Education in a Pre-Conference Event (PCE).
The participants had a marathon of 8 hours filled with amazing content in the area of neuroscience, and how it impacts education at a deeper level we could perhaps imagine. It’s quite impossible to bring the whole content in details, but I’ll write about what rocked my world: Visible Learning.

Based on John Hattie’s book, Visible Learning for Teachers, the session brought to us what influences learning. To my surprise, the top 5 factors are: aligning and meeting students’ expectations, teacher credibility in the eyes of the students, quality feedback, teacher-student relationships and meta-cognitive strategy problems.

Being a teacher myself, that came as a wake-up call, and I strongly believe in the power of reflection for teachers. According to Jack Richards, “critical reflection refers to an activity or process in which an experience is recalled, considered, and evaluated, usually in relation to a broader purpose. It is a response to past experience and involves conscious recall and examination of the experience as a basis for evaluation and decision-making and as a source for planning and action”. (Richards, 1990)

With a new semester coming around the corner, it is time to revisit my beliefs as a teacher. In the end, it is all about offering your best self to your students, and with that, I leave my question. How much of the top 5 factors have you already considered with your students? If you haven’t, are you brave enough to rethink your perspectives?

Link to RichmondShare blog post about ‘critical thinking’: http://www.richmondshare.com.br/what-is-reflective-teaching-and-why-is-it-important/

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