I have been teaching at Camosun college for the past 2 years, and have been a Registered Nurse for almost 20 years. When I first began teaching, I realized that being an RN gave me many skills that help with teaching, but I was missing some important education specific to being a college instructor! This PIDP program has helped so much. I feel more confident in the classroom with each course I take! PIDP 3260 is the sixth course I have taken and I am enjoying this journey. Follow this page to learn more about my journey through PIDP 3260 specifically.
Many of these blog entries will be reflections on the textbook, “The Skillful Teacher” By Stephen D.Brookfield.
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Teaching Perspectives Inventory (TPI)
Here is a copy of my Teaching Perspectives Inventory. It was interesting for me to analyze and examine. As a nursing instructor I realized that transmission (having mastery of the subject matter). I strongly believe and try to do the readings I assign to students, be prepared and meet the outlined course objectives. I also try to be skilled as a nurse and work to demonstrate this to my students. The results of the TPI do reflect how I view myself as an instructor. Here is the link to a description of the 5 inventories, I found this helpful when interpreting. http://www.teachingperspectives.com/tpi/
The Skillful Teacher – Chapter 1: Thoughts and Reflections
This week I read Chapter 1 of the Skillful Teacher by Stephen Brookfield.
I like his somewhat opinionated way of writing, and I found myself relating to a lot of what he was saying. After almost 20 years as a nurse, going into a teaching role was an interesting transition. I have felt many emotions during my teaching experience and vulnerability has been an emotion that I was surprised to feel. When Brookfield (2015) outlines his, “truths of teaching”, I felt that I was reading my own thoughts. Accepting these ‘truths’ helps to ease this roller coaster of emotions I have experienced.
My 2 favorite truths were: ” I will always feel like and imposter and will never lose the sense of amazement I feel when people treat me as if I have something valuable to offer.” And ” I cannot motivate anyone to learn if at a very basic level they do not wish to. All I can do is try to remove whatever organizational, psychological, cultural, interpersonal, or pedagogic barriers are getting in the way of their learning, provide whatever modelling I can, build the best possible case for learning, and then cross my fingers and hope for the best.” (P.9)
I liked the way that Brookfield states that this is his experience and once you accept these experimental truths, you can have confidence in your teaching ability. I am looking forward to reading more of this book.
Brookfield, S. (2015). The skillful teacher: on technique, trust, and responsiveness in the classroom. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
The Skillful Teacher – Chapter 2: Thoughts and Reflections
This week I continued to read Brookfield’s book. This chapter focussed on his informed assumptions of skillful teaching. He explains that the 4 assumptions are:
- “Skillful teaching is whatever helps students learn,
- Skillful teachers adopt a critically reflective stance toward their practice
- The most important knowledge that skillful teachers need to do good work is a constant awareness of how students are experiencing their learning and perceiving teacher’s actions
- College students of any age should be treated as adults. (Brookfield, 2015. P.15)”
The assumption that Brookfield discusses about having a critically reflective stance towards teaching practice is the assumption that really stuck with me. On page 21 he points out that instructors who critically reflect on their practice prevent teaching from becoming stale. Job satisfaction is so important, and thinking about our teaching and what we do everyday will help us stay motivated and engaged in teaching. I think this book is giving me insight into teaching and the values I hoped in my profession.
Reference: Brookfield, S. (2015). The skillful teacher: on technique, trust, and responsiveness in the classroom. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Critical Reflection is it necessary?
I love FacultyFocus (https://www.faculty focus.com), the articles always seem so relevant to me, and I seem to get ‘aha’ moments everytime I take a read.
This article is written by Maryellen Weimer (who I think writes so well!) and she poses the question, “Does it matter when we say one thing but then do another?” In my opinion, it sure does! The quote from this article that I liked was:
“And you don’t grow as a teacher if you aren’t regularly subjecting your practice and your philosophy to thoughtful analysis…A fundamental goal for every educator should be to grow continually as a teaching professional. Such instructional growth requires hard work and commitment.” (Weimer, 2010).
So much of what instructors do day to day requires some degree of reflection. There are days where we feel so proud and excited about our class or interaction with students, and other days we cry, “do over!”. It is important to never stop considering a day’s practice and reflecting on it all. Personally, I get satisfaction from continual growth and inquiry. It is what I want my students to do too, so its probably a good idea to model my goals!
Weimer, M. (2010, September 02). Keeping Teaching Philosophy and Instructional Practice on the Same Page. Retrieved July 18, 2017, from https://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/philosophy-of-teaching/keeping-teaching-philosophy-and-instructional-practice-on-the-same-page/