Tuesday, September 07, 2010

been through this before......

Today I was presenting material in my class and I thought to myself, "why does there have to be a first time through this?" I am now presenting this material for the second time. Granted, the first time was in a different textbook but, all the same, it is the same material. I can guarantee you that my students are getting 50-100% more efficiency and performance this time around.
Then I thought to myself, "You know Julie, this isn't all about how you teach. Each time through there will be smooth lectures and bumpier ones. Ultimately- however- the students will notice your sincerity for their learning and your commitment to the day-to-day rigor of the class."

I'm comforted knowing that my students didn't get such a bad deal last semester. I did things differently and, I think, not as well. However, I did do a few things last semester that I probably won't take the time to do this semester. Not because they weren't worthwhile learning tools. I just came to the conclusion that the amount of learning that resulted in these time-consuming activities wasn't proportional to the huge amount of time I was investing in preparing them.
So- there it is. We all evolve as teachers.
I'm hoping to try to incorporate more real-life stories and anecdotes for my lectures. Perhaps blogs like Speak Easy Science and other journalist-based blogs can help me bring some of these interesting stories into my teaching. We'll see.