Biljana Živković’s Literary Recommendation

According to some research, on average, a teacher makes more than 1,500 pedagogical decisions every day at school. That's more than four decisions per minute! What does a teacher need to know, can, or be able to do? Simply put: he or she must possess incredible abilities. The fact is that a dedicated teacher believes that in doing their job, they must do everything necessary to get the best out of their students! However, that is exactly the essence. If teachers do "everything that is needed", what is left for the students? Would things be different if we spent a little less time teaching and giving our students more time to learn ?!

In my search for answers to this question, I came across The Lazy Teacher’s Handbook by Jim Smith, which is full of interesting ideas. It is written in an interesting and practical style and is full of "things to try" in class, as well as introducing techniques that can help me put children in the center of my work.

If we want for our students to learn more and for us to work less, this book provides us with arguments and describes the actions we need to become a lazy but exceptional teacher. Already proven techniques shift the focus from teaching to learning, allowing us to have more free time on our hands.

This is a book about top quality learning because it offers a different approach to teaching. It is full of practical ideas on how to be successful in our work and reasonable explanations that can help us organize our work. It is an ideal book for students and teachers who are willing to think creatively "outside the box", ie. a guide for creative teachers and enthusiasts.

 I will single out:

At the beginning of the class, specify the achievements.

By working with groups, you enable your students to acquire knowledge, skills and attitudes by working together.

A lazy teacher does not give up information technologies because they can encourage students to learn, enable them to stay active, help them to repeat what they have learned and empower students because digital literacy is a skill of the 21st century.

I will list just some of the ideas for lazy classes:

  • Would it be possible? (Students demonstrate in the most incredible way what they have learned about a given topic.)
  • Judge and Judgment (Form a court and ask students to defend or condemn the characters.)
  • Traditional and exciting learning from textbooks (Evidence hunt: they prove or disprove given statements, how to improve the textbook - ideas related to questions, tasks, illustrations…) 
  • I resign! (Announce your resignation; students will study the given topic for the next 5 hours.)
  • Media devastation (Presentation of what was learned in the form of a TV show.)
  • Authorize students (Ask students in advance to help you present key parts of the lesson.) 
  • Organize "guest experts" who will address the class and impress their "colleagues".

If you adopt the basic principles that Jim outlines in this book, there are great tools for working with students that you can use as tried and tested teaching techniques, which will help you enjoy teaching and students achieve better results. 





I warmly recommend this book to all teachers because it will save you energy and involve your students in the learning process! You can get the book online in English or Croatian edition.

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