Lots to think about besides class

I had planned a group activity, problem solving and discussion for lecture yesterday.

The students worked in teams of two or three. They were to analyze the news releases they had been in contact with — in the textbook, the sample I had provided, and a practice they had written — and develop a list of the qualities of a good news release.

But when the time came for reporting back from the team discussions, I could tell we weren’t reachnig the analysis stage on Bloom’s Taxonomy.

If you’ve taught, you know what I mean.

You can ask questions, prompt, rephrase, hint and urge. But some days the lightbulb of insight just isn’t clicking on.

Class went OK. We did list a few qualities of effective news releases. But we just didn’t accomplish as much as I thought we would.

Then after class, I met with the grad students who are teaching assistants with me. As we discussed the week’s lab assignment, we discussed the many other issues that students were thinking about this week — the elections and early voting, the World Series, Halloween, and the big Florida-Georgia game on Saturday. 

The discussion was a good reminder that some days (or weeks) the students have a lot to think about besides class. 

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