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Letters to the Editor

Professionally Speaking welcomes letters and articles on topics of interest to teachers. We reserve the right to edit letters for length and to conform to our publication style. To be considered for publication, letters must provide the writer’s daytime phone number and registration number. Address letters to: The Editor, Professionally Speaking or 101 Bloor St. W., Toronto, ON M5S 0A1.

“Real-World” Lessons?

An image of an article from 'Professionally Speaking'' titled, 'Force of Nature.'

I opened the December issue to discover that the teacher profiled in Great Teaching offers “real-world lessons.” All teaching offers “real-world” lessons. I’m not saying every teacher is a great one, rather, I’m calling into question the perpetuation of the myth that the classroom, its content and its instructor exist apart from — and indeed in contrast to — the real world. It’s disappointing that our professional regulator would reinscribe this myth in the pages of its own publication.

My classroom is the real world; every classroom is the real world. To suggest otherwise is to do a disservice to me, to my students and to the teaching profession as a whole. To think otherwise only perpetuates the myth that teaching is something one does only because one cannot find success in the “real world” or because one has had enough of the “real world.”

—Dr. Marc A. Ouellette, OCT, is an assistant professor and learning games initiative research fellow in the department of English at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va.

Correction: In the March issue we incorrectly identified the name of the university that College scholarship recipient Emily Runstedler attends as Wilfrid Laurier. Runstendler is a teacher candidate in the concurrent education program at Nipissing University’s Brantford Campus, which is offered in partnership with Laurier Brantford.