Sunday, July 19, 2015

What Does it Mean to Teach?

A Reflection on Week 6 of INTE 5340

I had forgotten to read Chapter 6 last week, so this week I read both Chapters 6 and 7. Chapter 6 was quick reading, but Chapter 7 was like Chapter 2 - a lot of new ideas and research, and a lot of new vocabulary to digest. It made me think about my teaching, and my school, what seems to work and what could be changed. My written response to L&K ended up being a story about my school, in fact.

Here's a question - a lot is written about learning and learners and communities of learners, and almost nothing is written about teaching. In these communities of learners, whether digital and online or not, who are the teachers? And more importantly, who qualifies as an engaging and effective teacher? Exploring this question has been part of my focal theme, not just this semester but for decades throughout my teaching career. In my work this semester, I am acutely aware of being both a learner and a teacher. The learning is in mastering a technique or tool to achieve an end product. The end product, for me, is always an attempt to teach, either overtly or covertly. L&K left a hint in Chapter 7 where they mention mentoring (p. 221), and I hope they enlarge upon this in Chapter 8.

I posted the following:

I would give myself a 9.5/10 for the week. I had fun putting a lot of late-night work into my animatedGIF assignment. I was happy to really focus on my theme of physics teaching this week. I was a day late posting my reading response, though.

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