Friday, June 29, 2012

Institute conference, post #2

One of the hallmarks of an Institute conference is that each plenary and large-group session demonstrates active learning techniques for the engaged classroom.

In our first meeting on Monday morning, we used pair-and-share with both cold-calling and volunteering, pass-the-paper, and send-youself-a-tickler.

To pair and share, have participants form groups of 2-3, discuss a point, and then report back to the group.  So in a torts class, you might have students pair up to identify a point that they'd like the professor to go over, then report it to the larger group.

Pass-the-paper involves posing a question or task, then simply passing a piece of paper along a row and having each person briefly answer the question.  Participants benefit from seeing a variety of responses, and the professor may collect them as well for feedback.

Send-yourself-a-tickler has participants writing themselves a note, reminder, or insight, to be sent to them later on.  So the first day of class, you might ask students to record their emotions or motivations on a piece of paper and place it in an envelope.  At the end of the semester, return the envelopes to the students to remind them of where they started and where they are now.


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