Three new essays have been posted on the Teaching & Learning site as part of the Core Matters series, which offer richly thoughtful explanations of the role each discipline plays in our University core curriculum. Learn about a discipline you might not yet have pondered: Nicole Leupp Hanig and Mead Hunter discuss Fine Arts 207; Brad Franco explores history; and Stephanie Salomone explains the role of mathematics.
Teaching & Learning Collaborative
The “UP Way” of being here for our students is unparalleled. Done with our whole minds, hearts and souls, it can also take quite a toll on us as teachers. As we head into the amazing perk of Christmas Break, the Tweet version of this TLC teaching tip is TAKE THE BREAK! The longer version is available in this brief article from the American Psychological Association. You’ve been told countless times on airplanes to put on your own oxygen mask before trying to help others. That goes for college instructors too! These are the 10 tips suggested by the APA:
- Eliminate as many stressors as possible, and it’s almost always possible to stay away from campus for a few days, go email-free for hours at a time.
- Cultivate social support. Swap meals with a friend so you each get a night off from cooking. Say yes to an invitation or two to enjoy a cup of coffee or happy hour.
- Seek good nutrition: no particular diet is required here; just aim for a rainbow of colors on your plate. Maybe the long break gives you a chance to try new recipes or restaurants your can’t in the bustle of the semester.
- Relax your muscles through stretches, a warm bath, a massage, etc. when the rest of the world is working.
- Meditate, pray, be mindful of a given moment. Light a candle and allow yourself to be taken into its bright flame.
- Flex your muscles. A brisk walk to enjoy the lights in your neighborhood, perhaps? The research on the link between moderate enjoyable physical movement and de-stressing is unambiguous.
- Protect your sleep. Just do it. Seriously.
- Get out in nature. This one combines several other suggestions on this list, and we live in a part of the world where we are spoiled with choices on natural areas to enjoy.
- Choose your own pleasurable activities and do them. Sing along to holiday songs while driving, binge-watch The Crown, savor a novel, paint some pottery.
- Reframe your thinking. If you feel yourself spiraling into imagining worst-case scenarios, stop and put your mind elsewhere. Set realistic expectations for yourself. Strive for acceptance of situations outside of your control. Here’s a novel way to disrupt harmful mental loops: alphabetize your favorite books or spice rack in your head.
You know this! None of these are rocket surgery, and it’s quite likely you dispense similar advice to your students when they are anxious. Take your own sage advice; you are every bit as important as those worthy young souls you tend so conscientiously.
For more information contact Karen Eilfer at email@example.com.
In this 6-minute IGNITE-funded video, Naveen Gudigantala of the Pamplin School of Business Administration offers portable ideas for helping students learn more from group work. He also offers tips on avoiding common pitfalls of student collaborations.
For more information, contact Karen Eifler at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Wednesday, October 2, all are invited to bring a lunch and explore the background of why so many syllabi and email signatures include ‘his/him,’ ‘she/her,’ or ‘they/their.’ The Teaching & Learning Collaborative will host a brownbag lunch conversation around the question “Why do pronouns matter?” in the Murphy Room from 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. The conversation will be facilitated by Alice Gates, social work, who will provide a bit of input and then offer vignettes and dilemmas for further consideration by the group. No universal answers are promised, but a better understanding of why what people choose to call themselves matters may emerge from this session.
Email Karen Eifler (email@example.com) if you have logistical questions about this very informal gathering.
UP aims to cultivate world-citizenship in its students; are faculty up to the task? In this week’s Teaching & Learning submission, Lars Larson reviews the book Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World – and Why Things are Better Than you Think that can help orient our global imaginations more accurately.
For more information contact Larson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Teaching & Learning Collaborative will host one more peer-led workshop from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3, in the Murphy Room of Franz Hall. Come hear Carolyn James, mathematics; Jeffrey White, Learning Commons; Rebecca Smith, education; and Lorretta Krautscheid, nursing, offer tips and pitfalls of the newly popular approach to teaching content-heavy courses, dubbed “untethered lecture capture.” Bring your lunch and find out why this strategy has captured so many teachers’ attention and what users wish they had known before they started with ULC.
For more information contact Karen Eifler, Garaventa Center, at email@example.com.
What do you do (or what CAN you do) when a student stops showing up to class? From a recent brownbag conversation on the topic, the Teaching and Learning Collaborative compiled concrete, specific suggestions from the Shepard Academic Resource Center, the Care Team and faculty colleagues.
Big takeaways: follow through on attendance policies in your syllabus (changing them out of sympathy does no one any favors); let students know, in word and email, that you noticed they were gone and that you’d like to help them get back on track; don’t shy away from alerting the Care Team (via Early Alert) when a student misses a week of class without explanation. A lucky list of thirteen strategies and insights from that brownbag session are gathered in this 2-page document.
When you add a link on your Moodle course page to an article in a library database or to a streaming video, how can you tell if the link will work for students connecting from off-campus? Most library databases offer the option to obtain a persistent or stable URL for individual articles or videos, and many of those persistent URLs are automatically set up to connect through the library’s off-campus access system. However, there are exceptions to every rule, and unfortunately not all library resources provide an easy, off-campus-friendly URL for specific items. Check out the library’s Linking to Online Resources from Moodle web page for tips on finding persistent links to content within your favorite library resources, and for indications of which resources offer grab-and-go friendly links ready to be added to Moodle, and which links need a quick-and-easy edit (with instructions provided) to work from off-campus.
If you have questions about linking to library content from Moodle, or other library-related matters, contact Stephanie Michel at firstname.lastname@example.org or x7418.
This week from the Teaching and Learning Collaborative: Internationalizing higher education has become a top priority world-wide (Gould, 2017). “Today’s college students must become adept both at interacting, cooperating, and engaging with individuals from diverse backgrounds and at grappling successfully with the kinds of unscripted problems and challenges that characterize life and work in the complex world they will enter upon graduation” (Whitehead, 2015). Expert Dawn Whitehead has spent decades developing integrative global opportunities as well as local experiences that promote intercultural learning. In her article, “Why Global Learning Cannot Wait,” Whitehead shares about the importance of global awareness and engagement. The Models of Global Learning link in this article provides specific ideas on how institutions have proceeded with developing and revising curricula to reflect global integration.
On January 30, Dawn Whitehead will visit the UP campus to share more ideas with us. Please use this link so find more details and join the conversation. For more information contact Kimberly Ilosvay, education, at email@example.com.
How can white professors at UP achieve a more complex understanding of race and racism? In this week’s Teaching & Learning blog, Lars Larson offers an overview of this year’s College of Arts & Sciences book group selection, White Fragility: Why it’s so Hard for White People to Talk about Racism, by Robin DiAngelo (pictured).
For more information contact Larson at firstname.lastname@example.org.