Throughout the Teacher for Learning module we’ve explored various types of metaphors for teaching and learning.

Prior learning was baggage. Motivation was drive. Mastery and organization of knowledge are like component building blocks toward a cohesive structure. Self-direction and metacognition are like our own internal GPS signaling our own personal wayfinding.

Now it’s time to put it together considering your own teaching philosophy. What is your metaphor for teaching and learning?

Find a photo or draw a picture that can represent your own metaphor. Narrate why this image represents you and your approach as a teacher.


This activity is part of the Metacognition section of the Teacher for Learning Module.

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65 Responses for this Activity

  • Coach and Guide
    by Pamela LeBrun (@PamLeBrun)

    I see myself as a coach and guide most teaching days. The students look to me for knowledge and to build their technology/software skills, but also to guide them to what the working world looks like. Working in the School of Business I find a lot of students come chat with me during office hours more… »

  • Promoting metacognition in your students – Activity
    by Isaac Kimunio (@Dr. Isaac Kimunio)

    Explain five strategies that you can use to promote metacognition in learning   Teach students how their brains are wired for growth. Give students practice recognizing what they don’t understand. Provide opportunities to reflect on coursework. Have students keep learning journals. Use a “wrapper” to increase students’ monitoring skills. 2.     Consider your own teaching philosophy. What is more… »

  • Conducting
    by Susanmarie Harrington (@susanmarieh)

    Orchestral conducting seems like a great metaphor for teaching and learning–the combo of individual and collective work makes great things possible.

  • Teaching Philosophy
    by Michelle Laurence (@Michelle Laurence)

    As much as I try to review and expand my teaching philosophy (PS I’ve never taken a philosophy course in my life), I hang on this quote from Christa McAuliffe who was a teacher first, then a Space Participant (aka the first teacher in space). She said “I touch the future, I teach”. Here is more… »

  • Challenger
    by Tricia Bonner (@Tbone)

    My role as a teacher is to challenge. This means that I may question ideas and beliefs to create space for new learning. This can be uncomfortable for many, so I also see my role as a coach. Students need support as they work through these new ideas. I recognize that even though the destination more… »

  • A Flower Garden
    by jessica srivastava (@Jessica)

    I have always seen myself as a gardener – in my life away from the teaching, I spend much of the summer in the garden nurturing and caring for my flowers, vegetables, and wildlife. I see myself in the same type of role in the classroom. At the beginning of semester, I always tell my students I am the facilitator here to more… »

  • Teaching Metaphor – We are caterpillars
    by Alissa Bigelow (@alissabigelow)

    I see teaching as a journey of self-discovery & growth. Everyone comes into a new classroom as a beginner with the goal of learning. As they continue to learn, they evolve and develop new skills and talents. I see my classroom and guidance as providing the conditions necessary to thrive, grow and evolve. When this more… »

  • Metaphor activity
    by Lori Hallahan (@lhallahan)

    This image shows people discussing something as a group. I believe that my role as a teacher is to assist learning through connecting. This applies to the students in my class not only learning the content provided but learning from each other as well through group discussions and group projects. As much as I hope more… »

  • Teaching Philosophy and Metaphor for Learning
    by Marie Ritchie (@mritchie)

    There is a large Sugar Maple tree in my yard that sits atop a hill. It is completely exposed in its environment to sun, wind, rain, snow, and sleet. It is majestic and has an ethereal beauty that predates me and will survive long past my time here. With the evolving seasons mother nature helps more… »

  • Motivational speaker
    by Giselle Carter (@gmcarter)

    Image of myself as a teacher:  I see myself as a motivational speaker – who hopes my students will catch the vision.  Over four terms, through my words and teaching style I paint a picture of the benefits for children of high-quality care with responsive caregivers, and through practical application, hands-on activities and equipping them with more… »

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