The WR1 report is the first time I have put all of my teaching resources into a single document. Now that I have it posted on my website, complete with hyperlinks, I can use it to get help with my teaching no matter where I happen to be teaching, as long as I have an internet connection. I wish I had done this long ago!
I covered two methods of evaluation in my document, while the example covered only one. I also compared the two methods and made suggestions for improvements.
The WR3 report was a valuable exercise in developing a better system of evaluation for students. It will help me in the future in teaching classes to have a standardized method of evaluation with common principles of fairness and benefit to the students.
WR4 was a difficult and time-consuming assignment and I had some difficulty figuring out in what circumstance I would use such a lengthy document. As part of my portfolio, I think it demonstrates that I have the ability and knowledge to cover all aspects of teaching a course, whether or not I actually use this document with my students. My other thought was it could be posted on my teaching website as FAQ’s (frequently asked questions) to provide answers to students wondering about my class.
This report was very useful. I can imagine that any substitute teacher who got such a piece of work before class would have their socks (figuratively) knocked off that an instructor would go to such trouble to help them out. The document could be slightly modified to fit any class I might be teaching, and I could simply e-mail the substitute teacher a link to the website where they could read and follow the instructions.
These teaching observations were both inspiring and instructive. I must say I have never looked at a teacher in quite this same light before. The exercise will inspire me in the future to teach as though I was being observed by a fellow instructor; not to be self-conscious, but rather to teach so that another instructor would say “wow, I wish I could learn to communicate with my students on that level!”
Developing this set of lesson plans was downright fun. I plan to put the exercise to immediate use beginning this Monday in doing some in-house teaching of my own staff. I feel much more comfortable now with doing lesson planning that is useful, structured, and time-saving in the long run.
I admit I had a dreary feeling about doing this writing assignment, kind of like how one feels with New Year’s resolutions; i.e. “Why should I do this when I know I will not have the will power to carry through with it?” In fact, I purposely left off something that nagged at my conscience when I read Covey’s 7th habit “Sharpen the saw” and that was the item about exercise. I know I should do it, yet it is so easy to not do it. So, I didn’t put it in my mission statement. The good news is, I spoke with my business and life advisor, and developed a plan to start an exercise program which I think will have sticking power. So, it was a good and useful project, though somewhat painful to contemplate. Actually doing it was not nearly as bad as thinking about it.
Covey’s book was good, and writing about it helped me to digest the material better; to sort it out in my mind and to put it in the context of things I have already learned.