92Y Conference Reflection Victoria Martinez
Last Friday I attended the 2013 92Y Conference for teachers and students in the field of Education. It was a great opportunity to talk and reflect about the most important issues that concern Education today: Common Core Standards and its interference in what we consider developmentally appropriate practice. We started with general sessions in which Joan Almond discussed what we must struggle with today and how all these regulations and standards are affecting our students. It was a motivational moment to realize that, even though we cannot do anything about what is being imposed on us, we can raise our voices in protest and, in the meantime, look for ways around these Common Core Standards to find some time for real meaningful teaching. It was an important advice she gave because it is still our duty as teachers to provide children with the best learning experience we can offer them, even if that means juggling with what we must do and what we feel is right.
Because of this conference I realized that sometimes we forget the reason why we are teachers and get caught up in what is being demanded by higher authorities, affecting the most important actors of this process: our students. It is never too late to rescue the joy of learning, and we must not allow this joy to disappear because of what others think is the best. We must get together to continue to have encounters like 92Y in which we talk about reality, but also look for ways to guard our children’s experiences in the classroom, and there is no better way to do it than in a community of educators who are in it for all the right reasons. It was a wonderful experience to attend to this conference, because there is never enough things to learn, we must always reinvent our teaching methods, evaluate our practices and keep up with what today’s research suggests. Hopefully these types of meetings will continue to happen in every state and every country to work for a better world.