Tuesday, June 08, 2010

In Which I'm a Stereotypically Bad Student

The faculty development thing I went to last week was in some ways a prelude to another faculty development thing next week.

So last Friday, at the very end before the final end of the session lunch, during our third session of the day, the facilitators gave us an assignment to do for next Monoday. They showed us an example, and talked about it. There were three things, I remember that. But what exactly those three things are, I have little idea.

Anyone who's taught for more than a few weeks has realized that if you give students a verbal assignment, it better be 1) simple, 2) due quickly, and 3) repeated a couple times, written on the board, and then repeated again.

Like any other stereotypically bad student, I didn't take notes on Friday. I was tired. I thought I'd remember (because yes, I'm that stupid). I know better. Really, I do. I know that I'm not going to remember something a week away unless it's really, really memorable. So I know I should take notes. But, I was also tired and I just didn't write it down.

Of course, our facilitators being experienced teachers might also have thought to give us something written. Maybe they're trying to make a point, or maybe they're figuring we're all experienced teachers so we'll remember, for sure!

I think I'll email someone else and see if s/he wrote it down. At least I can get that part of studentness right.


  1. Bardiac, I'm pretty sure that the facilitators were 1) tired too, and so not at their teaching best, and 2) are going to groan on Monday that faculty are just like students and don't pay attention!

    Would love to know more about this set of workshops, it sounds very intense.

  2. Like Victoria, I'd love to know more about these workshops!

    I'm pretty critical of teaching development facilitators who don't demonstrate good teaching. Worse yet, though, is when they don't practice what they preach. (If the point is to help students take ownership in their work, then the facilitators must do more than say "do it" and stimulate ownership in the work of the teacher-participants.)

    I'm really tired right now, so I'm not at all sure I'm making sense. Maybe that means I should not be responding to posts. Forgive me.

  3. Victoria, You're probably right, of course. They had to have been tired, too.

    Mostly these workshops were good as far as teaching methods, with little lecture and lots of opportunities to try out ideas in small groups and such.

    The most frustrating one was on equity stuff. But then, I think I'm frustrated by getting "Equity stuff 101" for the third or fourth time rather than getting "Equity stuff 102," which I think I'm ready for.

  4. I suspect that to truly do "bad studentness" right, you'd have to wait until 20 minutes before it's due, and then send the facilitators an email asking for the assignment. But perhaps this would only really resonate as "bad student" if they'd given you a syllabus...

  5. I ALWAYS do "bad student" during professional development; one time a colleague and I spent the entire day composing truly inappropriate limmericks of which our very FAVORITE administrators were the subject...I do think part of what motivate us to become teachers is the abiding student in us.

  6. the bad students in my professional development things tend to try hijacking the program at hand with long-winded, off-topic "questions" or "comments" that really just allow them to gloat about their special snowflakiness. which usually reminds me that some folks really do need basic training, over and over.

  7. Or turn the whole thing into a gripe session about the 300 worst things about the university and its administration.