Yellow spots everywhere

Spread the love

“There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others
who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into
the sun.”

~ Pablo Picasso (1881 – 1973)
(Another great quote borrowed from

Eduhonesty: In many schools, especially disadvantaged, urban schools, we are now trying to teach all students the same lesson at about the same time. Some schools have every part of the day’s lesson scripted. The Assistant Principal may have designed the lesson down to the daily 5 minute opening activity. Paint-by-number teaching is becoming the norm in schools desperate to raise their test scores.

Subtle and difficult to detect, the losses from this approach are accruing around us. Test scores may go up. But teachers are artists. Creating a fun, memorable lesson takes time, energy and emotional investment. I am watching that emotional investment disappear as time is sucked up preparing to teach someone else’s plan. Our kids walk around saying, “whatever.” More teachers are doing the same thing.

“Whatever,” they say to each other, as they study the instruction they are to present for the day. Just about everyone can paint by numbers. Unfortunately, too often these lessons become yellow spots in the hands of someone who could have painted the sun instead.