So todays classroom experience was so different from the last one. I tried to take what I learned last week and apply it this week. Tried to be more organized, more detailed, more thought provoking in my lesson…..I tried so hard that by the end of my last class my students ran amuck! I felt like the lesson went out of control and students were going every which way during a practice and play time with new equipment. They were doing the intended assignment but I felt like it wasn’t structured enough for comprehension.
What I think I have to realize or let go of, is the idea of keeping the whole lesson within a boundary of strict rules of what should be done when and how. I have 24 students who all have different learning styles and rate of comprehension that I need to let them be free with how they want and need to learn things. What I saw as “running amuck” was viewed from the other instructors as students learning to do by doing, and having fun doing it.
I think there is a flow or energy with in the classroom that one needs to tap into and adapt the lesson from. I have to let go of preconceived notions of how the class time should be played out from day to day but learn to work with the energy that is presented at the time. When I see them yawning after a 15 minute power point its time to shake things up and get them engaged again. If being engaged is playing with new equipment and having fun then its working.
I have very hot and cold feeling teaching theory classes. Its really going outside of my comfort zone since I teach mostly in clinic and work at a dental office full time. Its a challenge to change gears with my thinking and presentation skills, I loose my words some days and have an easier time showing them, which helps me and them!
Working outside of my comfort zone is not easy but it makes me want to keep learning. From here I keep moving forward, even if it feels like taking a step back once and a while!