(Now that I have your attention…)
Does an educator dare surprise the learner?
Only if you want to make the best use of your time with your students, you’ll use the element of surprise to shorten students’ time to discovery. Surprise is a result of incongruity, which is one of the leading theories on why humor works. (more…)
Reflecting on what’s been learned
As yet another semester races toward closure it is important you make and take time to reflect on the activities in which you had your students engaged. Now that your students have some distance, what educational value can your students identify as they reflect on one activity after another?
Especially if you’ve integrated humor-based activities into your instruction, your students need to look back, inward, and outward, to see – and communicate with you and their peers – how all the semester’s activities have contributed toward what they have learned. This is not a graded activity. The purpose of the conversation is to help students reflect, integrate, synthesize and articulate what they learned. (more…)
Probing Questions: The perfect set-up for a nursing joke!
Okay, readers. This month I’m taking a risk. I need to discuss the concept of “probing questions,” but I’ve been around enough nurses to know that simply saying the word, “probing,” sends them off into a world OB nurses and proctologists know all-too-well.
Perhaps I could use the alternative term, “open-ended.” But, again, my mind jumps directly to hospital gowns.
This is a real distraction!
Jumping in, regardless: 6 core questions
Despite my mental images of all the take-offs you’re going to launch into, it is important that nurse educators be fully armed with one of the most powerful teaching techniques available for the professional educator: asking probing (open-ended/higher-order) questions. By open-ended, we mean those that cannot be answered by a simple yes/no or fact. By higher-order, we mean those that cause a person to think and to integrate a range of information in the generation of their answer.
Have you ever stopped to realize that there are only six types of questions? That’s right. SIX. Regardless of what words a person chooses to use, you are always trying to get at six questions or some derivative of them: who, when, where, what, how and why. (more…)
Use Humor to Capture Their Attention
Another late-August. Another group of students rolling into our colleges and universities, so full of excitement, fear and curiosity about their respective futures. Some are away from home for the first time. Some have made it through that transition and are involved in their next one – whatever that may be. Yet others may be stepping back into the college scene, having never attended or re-entering the world of “studenthood,” as adults.
Regardless of their personal status, as their professor, you get the opportunity to orient them to your course, its requirements and technologies, and your way of teaching. And of course (you tend to assume), every student is taking your course because of their burning interest in the material and in the great reputation you have built as the professor to learn from.
Hmmmmm. I wonder if that’s really what they’re thinking the first day of class? (more…)
The Twist Just Keeps Showing Up!
So you know how keen I am about the role of “The Twist” in creating a curriculum that sticks with your students. You know that it’s the Twist that shifts a classroom (or other learning environment) from “Yaaaawn,” to “pedENG!” (the exclamation one hears when a student is turned on to learning through a pedagogy of engagement).
This week, I’ve been engrossed in a lengthy book on CDs titled, Influencer, which looks at leading organizational change.
Different term, same concept!
And was I excited to hear the narrator discuss one of the key tools for leading organizational change – change that engages a person in doing, rather than just talking about change? (more…)