Thursday, May 24, 2007

Am I ready to teach in the 21st Century? Are you?

I love reading Barbara Ganley! She has a great post about the 21st century college teacher. It is actually the written version of a talk she gave.

The talk begins quite unconventionally:

Because I am a writing teacher and because I believe you have to explore your own perspective on a topic a bit before hearing what someone else has to say, I'd like you to ponder this question for a few moments:

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When does a speaker ask the audience to think about the topic before beginning her/his speech and really mean it? It makes so much sense, though. That is something I want to remember to do when I make my next presentation.

The entire post/presentation is fascinating. She concludes by saying:
Yes, my father was right, if we have any hope at all that reading and writing matter, that schools matter, we do have to change our way of teaching -- what we teach even-- to focus on creativity and resilience, boldness and deep listening and observing, on conducting research and collaborating in fluid online conversations, to create bonds with community and bridges between the personal and the other. In other words, a liberal arts education should expose us to ideas and perspectives and give us training in collaboration, communication and creativity. And we have the tools, right here, to help us do just that.
As I contemplate moving into a different classroom in a different school this fall, I want to be better at doing what Barbara does and what she advocates doing. I know that, in spite of how I have changed my teaching over the last few years, I am still learning.

I am going to go back and read Barbara's post again and again, I think. There is a lot there.


Anne Davis said...

Hi Nancy,
Boy I couldn't agree with you more! Her writing is inspirational!

Thanks for your comment on my testing post. I have been thinking about you and wondering how your job search is coming along. This year I have been involved in a research project on blogging and learning all about research as I go. That has hurt my own blogging and commenting as I was not sure what I could and could not post so I decided to be extra cautious. I am now finished with the kids (sniff, sniff). Now the work begins to compile and understand the data we have accumulated. I had a great group!


Rachel Boyd said...

Food for thought! Very interesting.... there's a lot there to digest huh!
Plus I quite like the idea of posing the question to the audience before beginning the presentation... will add that to my thinking.