Teachable Moments

As teachers, we often talk about teachable moments – those unplanned opportunities in the classroom to share our thoughts, insights, or wisdom with our students. Teachable moments can be fleeting. If you don’t take advantage of the opportunity, it’s gone in seconds. It takes great skill to hear and take a child’s lead in their learning. Sometimes, these moments are the most memorable for the student, and for the teacher.

But I wonder what would happen if we looked at teachable moments from a different perspective. Instead of only thinking of it as a one way street to transfer our knowledge to another, could we also look at them as opportunities that reveal themselves as a way for us to learn and grow? Do we ever open our minds to our own teachable moments?

Yesterday, I saw this tweet from a great thinker and leader in my PLN, Dr. Justin Tarte:


Justin is challenging us to have our own teachable moments! How many times do we browse Twitter, have a conversation with a colleague, read an educational article, or attend PD? When we leave those moments, do we leave changed? Do we leave having engaged in a deeper level of thinking? Or do we only allow those things to scratch the surface, blaming time, resources, and our bosses?

Today’s educational system, in fact the very same educational system that we have had in this country for quite some time, is being called into question. It’s being challenged. Change for change sake because it MAY be better is not what we need. Many have ideas, but to be our best, what we need is dialogue. What we need is deeper thinking. What we need is lots and lots of voices involved in this conversation. What we need is educators open to having their own teachable moments.

Because the only way we are going to get to the right answer of what is ailing our system, is to be learners ourselves, be willing to challenge both the status quo and change, and be open to teachable moments. It’s going to take all of us and our collective energy and focus.

Here are a few of my own attempts at doing just as Justin said, getting you “to reflect, ponder, agree, or disagree; any level of thinking beyond the actual tweet.” #teachablemoment


About amyarbo

My name is Amy Arbogash and I am currently the Director of Technology and Personalized Learning for the Verona Area School District. I have five years of prior experience as a Technology Integration Specialist at Bay View Middle School in the Howard Suamcio School District. I also have an additional 11 years experience in the 5th and 6th grade classroom at HSSD prior to my work as a specialist. Throughout my years in the classroom, I taught every core subject area and students from all backgrounds. I am a Google Educator in Google Apps and Chrome, a national speaker on educational topics, a teacher and leader at heart, a tech nerd by practice, and someone who thinks she can move education forward. This blog is dedicated to the students, parents, colleagues, friends, and family who I have learned from and been inspired by. You all have and continue to make me a better person. All blog posts and opinions expressed are my own.
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3 Responses to Teachable Moments

  1. Steven Meyers says:

    Great post Amy. This is THE definition of learning.

  2. tarafarah7 says:

    Love it! Thank you for sharing!

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