Prof’s de Roulet and Pecoraro explore for their colleagues, how to remember what you didn’t know, in order to better understand and connect with our students.
The end of a term can be very challenging for students and professors.
- We think of ourselves as lifelong learners, but our students are simply trying to get things done.
- When the time comes to register for next fall, it can bring about significant changes for our students. It signals the end of the term or the end of their college years.
Colleagues, think back to your college days and to a course that you did not do particularly well in…
- What was it like?
- Recalling a challenging time, possibly in a course that you were required to take and not in your major, can bring back memories of a time when you did not know the topic being taught.
- David received a “D” grade in a course that was particularly challenging because the professor would fall asleep while he was lecturing.
- Daniel took a course in astrology because it sounded fun! The high degree of math made the course a struggle. His professor would yell at the students when he felt that the class wasn’t getting it. Also, the professor had a broken lens in has glasses, very distracting!
After you’ve been teaching awhile, you can lose something by not thinking about the problems a student may be having.
- It is hard for us to sometimes get into the heads of our students who are non majors and who are just hanging on, we can see it as disruptive. It is good for us to think back to our own difficult experiences to remember what it was like to be that C- or D potential student.
- TIP! It can be helpful for professors to pause during a class in order to provide a distraction to re-connect with our students. David did this the other day in class with a question about how the “Humans vs. Zombies Wars” were going.
- Remind your students that you are a human being. (This statement is not connected to the “Humans vs Zombies” experience.)
- A sense of humor can go a long-way in a class. Daniel was talking about a religious topic when, from outside the class, came angelic music! It provided a moment humor and relaxation for his students.
- Try breaking up your class session every 10 minutes with a different method of delivery.
Near the end of a term is a good time to connect with students who may need some encouragement.
- Writing a note on a paper being graded is good way to encourage and also to say, this is what you need to do order to pass this class. Don’t say, “You are going to fail the class if you don’t shape up.”
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