I know that the clickers were a pretty big hit with a lot of you (even if we weren’t totally organized with the questions, yet). We talked about the fact that this kind of technology might be a useful way to get students to participate more in sharing what they understand, or sharing information about antecedent genres they’ve experienced.
Clickers are expensive if students have to buy them — although apparently you can use cell phones as well (we’re going to check on that and we’ll post a note about it soon). But below is a link to a polling technology that can use the computers to do the same kind of in-class, real-time response to questions:
If you decide to try it, please share your stories about what you did and how it worked out!
If you’re thinking about how to take new and exciting approaches to teaching in a genre studies model in the fall, here’s an article that may catch your attention: A Truly New Genre, at Inside Higher Ed. Alexandra Juhasz’s take on the production of her video-book includes important questions that genre studies scholars should be constantly asking.
And, maybe, this will spark inspiration for a new genre project your students might find productive!
This first Summer Update is a re-post from Inside Higher Ed. It engages the idea that “what we really are teaching when we teach first semester writers is how to make an ethical argument.” It can also get us thinking about how we teach our students to use the library. Interested? Go to the story.
Based on the success of the January Summit, the Writing Program will continue with the changes we have made to our orientation proceedings. So, the Fall 2012 Writing Instruction Summit has been scheduled for Thursday, August 16! Discussions and instruction will be collaborative and will capitalize on the teaching and research from diverse teachers and writers in the English department. To that end, we are now accepting presentation proposals for the Summit! If you’re interested in presenting, please read the full CFP.
Also, be aware that general dates for the fall have been posted on the calendar page, and more details will be provided this summer. New instructors will be attending orientation Aug. 9 through Aug. 15. Everyone is invited to the Summit on Aug. 16, and some optional activities will be planned for Friday, Aug. 17.
Dr. Ellison’s presentation on Civility in and outside the Classroom addressed issues concerning classroom management, appropriate classroom behavior, and what students and instructors can do to provide a civil atmosphere in the classroom. Dr. Ellison defined incivility as “any action that interferes with a harmonious and a cooperative learning atmosphere in the classroom.” She utilized a Power Point to highlight ways in which students perform incivility, including but not limited to annoyances, attacks on instructors psyche, “classroom terrorism,” and threats of violence. Dr. Ellison also provided the audience with an overview of the scholarship done on incivility in the classroom and went over research findings. During the course of the presentation, Dr. Ellison took questions and then as a group we discussed possible ways of handling uncivil behaviors. Dr. Ellison made suggestions on how we can maintain our authority while still being able to give students an active role in their own learning. The presentation received a great turnout and it seemed that everyone was finding the session valuable and enjoyable. Instructors were given the opportunity to discuss behavioral issues they encountered with their students and Dr. Ellison provided advice. She mentioned how important it is to have students contact the Dean of Students if they needed to miss classes for emergencies. She reassured us that as instructors we have a support system to help us deal with problems of incivility.