Cover: So many of my students want to give up when they dont get something in my class right away. We see it everyday when students that used to love a subject growing up and they decide that they don’t like it anymore. Sometimes it's because they don't understand it as fast as they once did, so it's easier for them to tell their internal self it's not for them anymore, rather than trying to figure it out. This is where the “Learning Pit” analogy comes in. I always intsile in my students that just because they don’t understand something right away, instead of giving up, it's better to use methods to help them figure it out instead of staying confused. This method is something that can be used in any classroom setting, as well as in any real life situation that they might find themselves in.
Tape: Wasn’t there once a show on TV where a guy used duct tape to fix everything that was broken? It is important to emphasize to students that making mistakes is better than getting a perfect score everytime they do something. When we give our students pre-tests we all have certain students that don't know how to answer questions they have never seen before. One thing I have learned to discuss with my students is the importance of at least “guessing”. Have you ever asked yourself or your students, “Why does guessing improve your memory?” There was a study done by Youki Terada fairly recently that found out when students try to answer questions on their own, they are actually able to get a better grip on what they are learning. We as teachers need to make our students “earn the answers” when we are teaching them something new, rather than just straight up giving them the answers.
Tools and Supplies: Have you ever heard of the visualization of social theory? There was an article written last year by Gordon Brett called The Right Tool for the Job: Problems and Solutions in Visualizing Sociological Theory that talks about a lot of great things. The author offers solutions to problems that you might be facing, Just like I preach to my students how valuable their phones can be. In my residential DIY class where we go over a bunch of different home repairs, I spend a lot of time telling them how they can use their phones to learn how to fix something in their own homes. Many of our students use their phones solely for communicating with their friends/ family, and social media; that they don't even realize how useful of a tool their phone can be until someone shows them.
Wheels: The wheels on a toolbox are very important so that the person using the toolbox can bring it closer to their work area. In this metaphor they are used to show the constant change in technology every year. Other subject areas stay the same for the most part as time passes, but 10 years ago even did many schools have 3D printers in their classrooms? Now almost every school has a 3D printer in it. I used to teach 3D printing to my students.
Toolbox shell: Students, teachers, and everyone that functions inside a school do better on a task when they are organized. In my small engines class each group of students get their own set of tools from me for the semester. If a group of my students have a question for me and I see that they aren't staying organized, I tell them that I won't answer the question until they organize their work space.