We had a record “20” responses this month. If you have not already read them, I encourage you to go to the September Archives and read each one. The following are just a few “pearls” from the list.
- 3 or 4 of our responding BLOGGERS mentioned the importance of keeping material new, reading and adding up-to-date information to the “talk”. New findings with their implications for practice can be a great springboard for comparing old with new and many other teaching strategies and stories that go beyond the simple facts
- Another theme was changing from thinking about what and how to teach to thinking about your learners’ needs. What do they need to learn? Where are they now? And What can you offer to help “fill the gap” By focusing on each new groups’ learning needs, you are probably starting at a different place and covering similar material but with the focus not on teaching , but helping the learners succeed.
- Another theme was very practical and focused on extrinsic as well as intrinsic rewards. Extrinsic rewards come from students, one BLOGGER suggested keeping those positive letters and notes from students for a “rainy day” when your motivation needs a boost. Others used feedback as a tool in refining their teaching. Intrinsically reward yourself by communicating with other dedicated teachers.
- Finally, TRY NEW THINGS!!! Get out of your “comfort zone”, go to workshops when offered and learn new approaches to teaching. And most importantly do it with enthusiasm. If you don’t feel enthusiastic, “fake it”, then feed off the students response until you really feel it. Or as one BLOGGER offered, Just say, I’m not on my “A” Game today, let’s go get coffee and do “flash cards”
- My humble addition is to mentor a new teacher on the faculty. No, not that “star” that is a natural, but that highly motivated, limited teaching skill faculty member that really needs you! When I hear that faculty member has gotten great reviews by students, I’ve got a smile on my face a mile wide.
Hope these suggestions were useful to you!