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This Course at MIT | Introductory Biology | Biology | MIT OpenCourseWare

This Course at MIT | Introductory Biology | Biology | MIT OpenCourseWare | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

Instructor Insights

Professor Hazel Sive, one of the two professors for 7.013 Introductory Biology, describes various aspects of how she teaches the course.

 

*Teaching Students to Solve Problems

*Interacting with Students in a Large Class

*Anatomy of a Lecture

*Preparing and Updating Lectures

*Interface with 7.00x

 

Dr. Diviya Sinha, course instructor for 7.013 Introductory Biology, describes various aspects of how she prepares materials for and coordinates the course.

*Recitations and Office Hours

*Problem Sets

*Additional Resources

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Excellent, dense, practical description how to teach and prepare the material. Worth reading very closely (for any course).

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Use the Psychology of Surprise to Grab Your Learner’s Attention

Use the Psychology of Surprise to Grab Your Learner’s Attention | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
In order to capture your learner's attention, break a pattern, introduce the unexpected. Play with an essential emotion: surprise.

Via EDTC@UTB, Suvi Salo
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Discussion around the theme of how positive surprises should be useful for learning. There is good common sense justifications for the importance of surprises. The connection of learning to observations in neuroscience is interesting and should be elaborated more. The 7 tips are in any case worth trying.

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Make It Count: Providing Feedback as Formative Assessment

Make It Count: Providing Feedback as Formative Assessment | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Giving feedback that is non-evaluative, specific, timely, and goal-related will provide students with opportunities to revise and improve their work and deepen their understanding.

Via Ariana Amorim, Lynnette Van Dyke
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Good article on the importance of feedback. It should be: 

 

* non-evaluative

* timely (throughout the course would be the best)

* relevant and specific (relative to learning objectives of the course)

* practical, action-oriented (what to do to improve)

 

There are various technology tools mentioned in the article, but for small groups that I have taught I have simply used e-mail.

 

Pin it for later: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/318981586081796915/

 

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Why do so many Moodle courses suck?

Why do so many Moodle courses suck? | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Moodle is a magnificent free product and has the potential to enable schools and teachers to build wonderfully unique interactive online learning courses in which learner interaction can be tracked, measured and responded to. Despite this the vast majority of Moodle courses I see are a long list of Word and PDF documents with at best a few forums that enable a minimum of human social interaction.
Via Nik Peachey, Elizabeth E Charles, Reijo Kupiainen
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Problems and possibilities of Moodle (and other similar platforms) outlined by Nik Peachey:

 

* Why Moodle courses often suck?

Not so intuitive platform to work with, lack of teacher training and skills to create online learning material (I agree with these points), excess security issues.

 

* What to do to improve.

 

* Comment about ready-made courses.

There are various problems, for example these often contain little student-teacher or peer interaction. I agree that the ready-made digital material, in my experience, is not very personalisable (and therefore difficult to teach in an inspired way).

 

* How to develop your Moodle skills?

The post gives 9 links to practical video tutorials (how to create a quiz, add a youtube, etc.). There are also free Moodle platforms to practice.

 

Read more: http://nikpeachey.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/why-do-so-many-moodle-courses-suck.html

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Ruby Rennie Panter's curator insight, August 1, 5:16 AM

Nik gives some very useful insights and some practical ideas for developing online materials. He has a focus on Moodle, but the ideas relate to any online learning platform.

Donna Farren's curator insight, August 1, 8:16 AM

Nik makes some great points about Moodle - or really putting any content online - there has to be instructional design training, online teaching training or blended teaching training and how to select content for online delivery.  technical training alone is not enough.

irene's curator insight, August 4, 11:51 PM

Interesting observation - echoes my own experience

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Proteins and Wave Functions: Making video lectures: Powerpoint screencasts

Proteins and Wave Functions: Making video lectures: Powerpoint screencasts | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Mikko Hakala's insight:

How to make your video lectures: Here is concrete advice and practical tips for Powerpoint screencasts.

 

Highly useful post.

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What could U.S. schools look like if students and teachers trusted one another?

What could U.S. schools look like if students and teachers trusted one another? | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
I recently had the opportunity to attend the Oppi festival in Helsinki, Finland with several colleagues from the U.S. education community.

Via Dean J. Fusto
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Mark Sandy, blogger in CTQ (@teachingquality), reminds in his post that sense of trust and relationships are the key in education. The students and teachers are responsible to one another. Easy to agree with this.

 

http://www.teachingquality.org/

 

 

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aims and objectives - what's the difference?

aims and objectives - what's the difference? | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

You're ready, you're aimed, and now you have to fire off the objectives. But you're a bit confused. What"s the difference between the two? An aims-objectives confusion might arise when you are writ...


Via ICTPHMS, Suvi Salo
Mikko Hakala's insight:

An excellent analysis of the sometimes confusing concepts 'aim' and 'objective'. 

 

* Aims: The 'what' of the project, the overall intention.

* Objectives: The 'how' of the project to reach the aims. The steps, the milestones.

 

The post reinforces the importance of having the aims and objectives clear in mind in any project. At the end of the article there's also a useful list of the common issues of what can go wrong.

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- Why Formative Assessments Matter

- Why Formative Assessments Matter | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
The Resource for Education Technology Leaders focusing on K-12 educators.

Via Cindy Rudy
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Steven Anderson shares a good blog post on his teaching of Periodic Table and learning that formative assessment.matters. It's a strong story saying that formative assessment, in one way or another, should be incorporated in the lessons. This can be done traditionally or with EdTech tools. 

 

Feedback at the end of the class, or real time, and quizzing are examples of ways to do this assessment.

 

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Finnish Schools Not Relying on Ed Tech

Finnish Schools Not Relying on Ed Tech | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Caitlin Emmaof Politico.com paid a visit to Finland and was surprised to discover that teachers are not depending on educational technology. By contrast, American schools are spending billions of d...

Via Bonnie Bracey Sutton, Ivon Prefontaine, Melissa Marshall
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Interesting post and link to the main article in politico.com on the role of educational technology in Finnish schools.

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, May 31, 1:33 PM

Digital technology and, for that matter, any tool are not the key to teaching and learning. The relationships which exist between teachers, students, and subject matter are essential. Teaching is about being aware and making sound decisions in choosing the best tool for the right situation. What if we invested money in smaller classroom size and less in the digital technologies?

Melissa Marshall's curator insight, May 31, 8:11 PM

This is an interesting article about the investigation of the high-performing Finnish schools, and the fact that their classrooms are fairly low-tech (particularly given that we are spending a lot of money each year on edtech). It seems that the teacher is still the defining element in the classroom, regardless of which technologies students have access to. 

Suvi Salo's comment, June 1, 4:38 AM
Meillä on 600 oppilasta, 1 ipad, noin 50 läppäriä, luokissa opekone, tykki ja dokumenttikamera. Oppilaiden puhelimet käytössä.
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10 reasons to love #homework by @TeacherToolkit

10 reasons to love #homework by @TeacherToolkit | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
As part of my push to drive the standards of homework setting and getting in my own classroom, I thought I would share Ten (10) reasons why you should love homework as a teacher. Context: The conce...
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Nice deeper analysis of the essence and meaning of homework.

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Study: You Really Can 'Work Smarter, Not Harder' - The Atlantic

Study: You Really Can 'Work Smarter, Not Harder' - The Atlantic | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Research shows that reflecting after learning something new makes it stick in your brain.

Via John Evans, Mark E. Deschaine Ph.D., Suvi Salo
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Reflection on learning is beneficial, says this article based on empirical tests. Reflection here means "taking time after a lesson to synthesize, abstract, or articulate the important points".

 

Teaching or sharing the new knowledge with someone else was also tested and found to give the same benefit.

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For Students, the Importance of Doing Work That Matters

For Students, the Importance of Doing Work That Matters | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
If our students look at the work we’re asking them to do today and say “It doesn’t matter,” we’re missing a huge opportunity to help them become the learners they now need to be.

Via Grant Montgomery, The Rice Process
Mikko Hakala's insight:

A good post to provoke teachers think critically what they ask the students to do. How can the students do "work that matters"? That is, meaningful tasks that have potentially a wide audience and that reflect students' own interests.

 

In the traditional way, the student's "assignments" (exams, exercises, projects) are passed to the teacher for a grade, or in a little more advanced situations, to peers for review. Are these felt as "work that matters"? There have been of course plenty of opportunities to design meaningful tasks, but now access to web (global connections, collaboration, sharing) allows to amplify the audience and potential for real-world applications. 

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, May 1, 12:12 PM

It is important to note the article author, Will Richardson, points out that students who accomplish innovative things i.e. publishing book and inventions are outliers. It does not mean learning in school should not be meaningful. It means the opposite.

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Tips for Public Speaking

Tips for Public Speaking | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Public Speaking things

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Do you want to be a better public speaker? Here is a nicely comprehensive guide on five 'slides', with links to great tips on each of them.

 

1) Planning your talk

2) Designing the slides

3) Preparing

4) Delivering the talk

5) Reflecting after the event

 

You'll find discussions on issues like outlining your talk, how many slides to have, how to deal with nervousness etc. 

 

It's a well-structured, entertaining guide to become "an accomplished public speaker".

 

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Bob Irving's curator insight, April 28, 8:51 AM

I'm one of the few who actually enjoys speaking in public. Some great tips here.

Ana Cristina Pratas's curator insight, April 30, 4:41 AM

Good advice and tips for improving presentations. 

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Teacher's guide to sleep – and why it matters

Teacher's guide to sleep – and why it matters | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
On average, teachers get just six hours’ sleep a night. Neurologist Judy Willis explains why this is detrimental and offers her tips on how to nod off with ease
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Importance of sleeping enough (neurological and teacher-specific perspective), and four tips.

 

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, November 13, 11:54 AM

The last few years I taught I was down to 3-4 hours most nights. It was not good. Since I left teaching, I am back to 8 hours a night. The problem was not what happened in the classroom, but dealing with adults who thought they knew more about what I did.

 

@ivon_ehd1

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Public speaking for academics – 10 tips

Public speaking for academics – 10 tips | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Experts share rules of thumb from vocabulary and technology to handling difficult questions – and your own first-time nerves

Via Suvi Salo
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Great topics and comments on:

 

1) Vocabulary to use

2) Presentation strategy (eye contact, how to settle your nerves ...)

3) From reading your paper to bullet points

4) If icebreakers needed, must be relevant to the talk

5) Role of visuals

6) Know your audience (local culture etc.)

7) Practice (and never underestimate your audience)

8) Dealing with difficult questions (humour, sidelining, postponing, bouncing...)

9) Learn from others. What you liked and what you didn't?

10) Be passionate and confident about your presentation

 

Plus 7 recommended resources on the web (reshared below):

 

http://colinpurrington.com/tips/academic/posterdesign

http://sixminutes.dlugan.com/25-skills-every-public-speaker-should-have/

http://www.nature.com/scitable/ebooks/english-communication-for-scientists-14053993/giving-oral-presentations-14239332

www.gaudeamusacademia.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIABo0d9MVE

http://slid.es/

http://www.wamda.com/standupcomm/2013/01/5-public-speaking-tips-for-entrepreneurs

 

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Advantage of Quizzes in the Lectures

Advantage of Quizzes in the Lectures | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

-Mikko's comment-

I have started to use quizzes in the beginning of my lectures. The questions are about the topics in the previous lecture. Here's why I think this is beneficial for learning and for the teacher him/herself: 

 

1) The teacher can choose questions that highlight the most important (must-know) content of the past lecture. 

2) It shows fast which concepts are more difficult than what the teacher initially thought. 

3) We can spend more time on the difficult topics (selective review of past material).

4) The quiz can be done in groups with peer-learning possibility.

5) The students bring up new viewpoints and unexpected interpretations of the questions.

6) It shows the overall level of students' capacity and speed of learning new things. 

7) The quiz questions can be used in the final exam.

8) As it's based on already taught material, it's not 'forced' problem-solving before having the resources.  

 

The original article (link) that gave the idea for experimenting:

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2013/11/21/education/frequent-tests-can-enhance-college-learning-study-finds.html ;

 

The research article:

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0079774 ;

Mikko Hakala's insight:
Any comments and can you think of more benefits?
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Content Curation as a Problem-Solving, Re-Assembling and Stewardship Process

Content Curation as a Problem-Solving, Re-Assembling and Stewardship Process | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

Via Robin Good
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Content curation in relation to students' work and assignments is discussed in this blog post by Ibrar Bhatt. (And more general, what implications content curation could have for education.)

 

From the revised Bloom's taxonomy perspective, curation could be seen next to creation at the highest level, see Steve Wheeler's great post on this: http://sco.lt/66Yxwf, (The post had a big influenced when I started with Scoop.it and ZEEF.)

 

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Terry Elliott's curator insight, August 16, 7:23 AM

The image above amounts to a template for curating a digital space:

Find something timeless to curate.Fit it into a pattern that makes sense.Find a larger context for why this matters.Share widely.

I think this fits into Harold Jarche’s simpler seek-sense-share framework.

Why does this matter?  If curation is all that Tufte and Bhatt say it is, then why aren’t scaffolds like these being used more often for training and in learning systems?  I am using the curation tool Scoop.it to do curation with my freshman comp students.  They use Scoop.it as their introductory platform  for beginning to acquire the skills  Tufte enumerates above that are part of the academic and business spaces they will eventually live in.  I am hoping they will demonstrate why it curation matters as they seek-sense-share their way to long and short form ‘texts’ that they will be writing all semester. That will include essays, tweets, G+ community posts, blog posts, research papers, emails, plusses, favs, instagrams, zeegas, slideshares, pictures, and a massive mobile presence from their own digital spaces.  Wish me luck.

Interesting links from article and from comments:

http://curation.wikispaces.com/General+References“Digital Media and Learner Identity: The New Curatorship”: http://www.palgraveconnect.com/pc/doifinder/10.1057/9781137004864http://www.lkl.ac.uk/people/potterhttp://digitalcurationandlearning.wordpress.com/http://digitalcurationandlearning.wordpress.com/2014/02/01/curatorship-is-a-new-literacy-practice/http://luke-callahan.com/students-must-curate-create-a-portfolio/
Terry Elliott's curator insight, August 16, 7:26 AM

The image above amounts to a template for curating a digital space:

 

1. Find something timeless to curate.

2. Fit it into a pattern that makes sense.

3. Find a larger context for why this matters.

4. Share widely.

 

I think this fits into Harold Jarche’s simpler seek-sense-share framework.

 

Why does this matter?  If curation is all that Tufte and Bhatt say it is, then why aren’t scaffolds like these being used more often for training and in learning systems?  I am using the curation tool Scoop.it to do curation with my freshman comp students.  They use Scoop.it as their introductory platform  for beginning to acquire the skills  Tufte enumerates above that are part of the academic and business spaces they will eventually live in.  I am hoping they will demonstrate why it curation matters as they seek-sense-share their way to long and short form ‘texts’ that they will be writing all semester. That will include essays, tweets, G+ community posts, blog posts, research papers, emails, plusses, favs, instagrams, zeegas, slideshares, pictures, and a massive mobile presence from their own digital spaces.  Wish me luck.

Interesting links from article and from comments:

http://curation.wikispaces.com/General+References“Digital Media and Learner Identity: The New Curatorship”: http://www.palgraveconnect.com/pc/doifinder/10.1057/9781137004864http://www.lkl.ac.uk/people/potterhttp://digitalcurationandlearning.wordpress.com/http://digitalcurationandlearning.wordpress.com/2014/02/01/curatorship-is-a-new-literacy-practice/http://luke-callahan.com/students-must-curate-create-a-portfolio/

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How Universities Use Pinterest to Hook Students | Sprout Social

How Universities Use Pinterest to Hook Students | Sprout Social | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Whether you’re still weighing the merits or have an existing presence, here are some creative ways universities are utilizing Pinterest Pins and Pinboards.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Some ideas how use Pinterest for outreach activities:

- virtual campus / near campus activities

- news channel, highlights

- presenting campus culture, student culture

 

Why not also:

- presenting individual departments, research lines

- even individual course contents 

 

Much of these could be student contributed. 

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Secrets to Great Presentations

Secrets to Great Presentations | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Leaders who present well, extend their influence, broaden their impact, and advance their careers. Great talkers have an advantage. Two questions: Ask the most important question presenters forget ...
Mikko Hakala's insight:

The essentials of giving a good speech in compact form.

 

* Do you need the traditional opening?

* Get busy, get to the point quickly. Be visual.

* Look at the people, don't scan.

 

What should they talk about when they leave the room? Tell them.

 

Via @Christina Lattimer

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Proteins and Wave Functions: A look inside one of my flipped chemistry classroom

Proteins and Wave Functions: A look inside one of my flipped chemistry classroom | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
Mikko Hakala's insight:

This post by Jan Jensen explains in detail how a flipped science course could be organized. It contains concrete explanations about the 'lectures', homeworks and how the curriculum was chosen. The background pedagogical considerations are also discussed.

 

An informative and useful post, especially for science teachers.

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Suvi Salo's curator insight, June 8, 5:04 PM
Flipped classroom
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A Must Have Rubric for Effective Implementation of PBL in Your School ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

A Must Have Rubric for Effective Implementation of PBL in Your School ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

"Project based learning is a teaching learning methodology that has been widely praised for its efficacy in enhancing learning achievements.The premise underlying PBL revolves around  getting students engaged in authentic learning events through the integration of mini-projects in class. These projects can be as short as one day and as long as a year. However, there is a difference between mere projects and project based learning. This table from Teachbytes provides a great illustration of the nuances between the two concepts."


Via John Evans, Andrew Boulind
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Excellent table reminding about the difference between projects and project based learning. Projects are too easily assigned as exercises to students, without paying attention to the issues on the right hand side of this table.

 

Pin it for later: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/318981586080452762/

 

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Catherine Smyth's curator insight, June 2, 7:43 PM

A handy rubric that can be adapted for HSIE K-6 problem-based learning projects.

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3 Ways of Getting Student Feedback to Improve Your Teaching

3 Ways of Getting Student Feedback to Improve Your Teaching | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

During the summer, you'll want to improve your teaching and lessons, but how do you decide where to start? Your students! I use these three ways to get feedback from my students.


Via Patti Kinney, The Rice Process
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Good, practical hints how to get feedback from the students.

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, May 28, 1:25 PM
The inputs and outputs that are involved with student feed
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Dan Pink: How Teachers Can Sell Love of Learning to Students

Dan Pink: How Teachers Can Sell Love of Learning to Students | Pedagogy | Scoop.it
As education grows and changes educators have the opportunity to change the way they envision their roles and their classrooms.

 

Jobs in education, Pink said in a recent interview, are all about moving other people, changing their behavior, like getting kids to pay attention in class; getting teens to understand they need to look at their future and to therefore study harder.

 

At the center of all this persuasion is selling: educators are sellers of ideas.


Via Gust MEES, Ilkka Olander
Mikko Hakala's insight:

From problem solving to problem finding, from transactions to transcendence.

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Rosemary Tyrrell's curator insight, May 21, 2:37 PM

The author of Drive talks about how to use these theories in education! 

Allan Shaw's curator insight, May 21, 6:04 PM

'One of the big topics Pink tackles in his current book is the idea of moving from transactions to transcendence — to making something personal. That’s the best way to “sell” students on what they’re learning, Pink maintains. This has been a recurring theme in education: connecting what’s taught in classrooms to students’ personal lives. But, as evidenced by current school dynamics, that’s not the way the tide is moving.

“Most of our education is heavily, heavily, heavily standardized,” Pink said. ... The idea that you treat everybody the same way is foolish, and yet the headwinds in education are very much toward routines, right answer, standardization.”

Why is it moving this way? One of the reasons, Pink said, is the “appalling” absence of leadership on this issue. “One of the things that I see as an outsider is that so much of education policy seems designed for the convenience of adults rather than the education of children,” he said.... "Why do we have standardized testing? Because it’s unbelievably cheap. If you want to give real evaluations to kids, they have to be personalized, tailored to the kids, at the unit of one. Standardized testing: totally easy, totally cheap, and scales. Convenient for politicians and taxpayers.”

cioccas's curator insight, May 21, 6:07 PM

Think a lot of this is relevant to teaching language to adults too - supporting autonomy, etc.

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Learning with 'e's: What makes an inspirational teacher?

Mikko Hakala's insight:

What makes an inspirational teacher? The students say:

- Enthusiasm and passion for the subject.

- They bring the students back on track, encourage to not give up.

- Give constructive, forward looking feedback.

- Offer help outside formal context, give support and advice.

- Use captivating teaching methods.

Short and good blog post by Steve Wheeler.

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, May 7, 11:12 PM

Teaching is important in student learning. Too often, we treat teaching as irrelevant and as something we can simply treat as theoretical. People who have not taught, others who left the classroom years ago, and some who never wanted to be in the classroom offer insights into something they know little about. The result is teaching is often treated as irrelevant and something that can be talked about in some virtual manner.

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Emerging Perspectives on Learning, Teaching and Technology

Emerging Perspectives on Learning, Teaching and Technology | Pedagogy | Scoop.it

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Nice wikipage covering many topics:

 

1) Learning and Cognitive Theories

2) Learner-Centered Theories
3) Inquiry Strategies: Tasks
4) Inquiry Strategies: Changing Learners' Minds
5) Tools for Teaching and Learning: Changing or Encouraging Human Behaviors
6) Tools for Teaching and Learning: Technology Tools
7) Socially Oriented Theories
8) Direct Instruction Strategies

 

Good web resource and reference material.

 

 

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Dean Mantz's curator insight, April 30, 9:45 AM

Thanks to Ana Cristina Pratas for sharing this resource.  I found the site provided a wealth of resources addressing education theories such as learning and cognitive, learner centered, and inquiry strategies.  I will definitely be sharing this site with my preservice students. 

Thomas Salmon's curator insight, May 5, 2:59 PM

A free book covering learning theory useful for applications in higher education. And it is a wiki. Win :)

Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, May 13, 4:44 PM

This looks like a very detailed table of contents to considerable theory.