Monday, September 11, 2006

5 Years Ago Today

... I was teaching my first course in psychology (intro) and taking the teaching practicum. It was a glorious day weather-wise. Now that I am taking my first intro class in lets' see - - 14 years(!) I have gained some new perspective.

It was okay 5 years ago to still use an overhead and write on the chalk board. Indeed, that was the only choice I had. When I taught intro at Whitman last year I had the option of using the much maligned Powerpoint in one class but not the other. Argh. So, I chose the path of leats resistance and TIME and stuck with my previous format. BIG mistake. See, students had changed in the 4 years that had gone by since 911-01. They had grown to expect powerpoint. They were not the students of my generation who were comfortable listening to a great lecture with few visuals. They expected, and arguably, needed something more akin to their multimedia-iPod-cameraphone-TMing lives.

((Side note: my clever pup just scored the end of a banana I had set down to start typing by licking the bottom of my foot and then my back. Yet another example of preferential sharing to those who groom!)).

My class stunk (it did, I know it; I'm not happy with it, and I'm motivated to fix it) because I failed to fully appreciate that none of the students sitting in my class were the student I was when I took the same class 14 years previously.

And TWO:
Since 911-01, students have changed. And, I need to adapt my methods to better meet their needs and expectations. So, I have decided I will revamp my intro class to fit the powerpoint multimedia format. I started that halfway through the semester so now I just have to go back and finish the front half. See, I did sense this last year and I did make time to do it. I even found a way to get PPT into my non-PPT equipped room :-)

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