Thursday, May 11, 2017

Teaching Tip #170

Teacherscribe’s Teaching Tip #170
This was a great read I came across via Twitter a couple of years ago.  I use it often in my Teaching and Learning 250 class at UND.
I also look for it (and see it) all around me at LHS.
The third thing it takes to be a great teacher: compassion.
The author writes – “You are compassionate: Teaching is a very humanistic profession, and compassion is the utmost feeling of understanding, and showing others you are concerned about them. A compassionate teacher models that characteristic to the students with her/his actions, and as a result students will be more open to understanding the world around them.”
Compassion – the ability to connect and relate to others.
What was so tragic about those teachers getting up and leaving the session at MCTE was because they were not just giving in to their fears but they were also missing out on a great chance to connect with their peers.
I was partnered up with an English teacher from St. Cloud.  We interviewed each other and then wrote pieces of micro fiction about the others’ experience.
It was a chance to connect.  Then when we read each others’ pieces – she wrote about a moment from my life (particularly about how she thought KoKo, as a young teen, would respond to her mom’s news that she wouldn’t be the youngest anymore as she was pregnant with Kenzie) – and I wrote about a particular experience she told me about (she lived in a frat house across from the campus Newman center and how often if they ever threw a party, she’d stay hunkered down in her basement apartment, which had spiders).
When we read our pieces to one another, it was fun to examine how we both used first person points of view.  How we loved dialogue and what we’d change if we did a second draft.
It was a blast.  And those who left early missed out on a great chance to connect.  And to learn.
Isn’t that was teaching (any teaching, not just great teaching) is all about?

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