What Happens When We Challenge Students?

I got to thinking about what would be a great visual representation of pushing students into an uncomfortable position to challenge them.  What shouted out at me inside my head was a clip from the movie “Dead Poet’s Society.”  John Keating, played by Robin Williams, is trying to get Todd Anderson, played by a young Ethan Hawke, to demonstrate a Yawp, but Todd is a bit shy and thinks what he comes up with is worthless.  After much probing and pushing, Todd finally breaks new ground and discovers he can achieve something great despite his own personal cynicism.  Here is a clip of the scene.  If you haven’t seen this movie, you really need to.  One of the best representations of a great teacher in action.

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