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Twitter: the welcome wagon for new faculty

July 17, 2011

Today, I sent out this tweet:

Within a matter of hours, my tweet got more than a dozen responses, and my mentee had many wonderful teachers following him. When I think back to when I first started teaching physics, knowing only my two colleagues in my school, I can’t imagine how incredible it would have been to be able to connect with, and get advice from so many teachers so easily using twitter.

Here’s the advice that these teachers shared:

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Robert Bell permalink
    July 18, 2011 4:54 pm

    Encourage good study habits, but emphasise that it is consistency that wins the day and leads the way to avoid an immense degree of hardship later…

    Focus your attention more on your students than on the material you have to deliver and remember that they really do want to learn, even though at times they do not get it right.

    Recognise that students only really begin to learn when they turn their attention to why they have got something wrong. As a teacher, you need to enthuse about the benefits to be gained from analysing errors. Tests should be seen as a vital means of identifying the cracks in their understanding and, more importantly, of filling them. A student who has scored 100% has gained very little from the exercise.

    Education is a voyage of discovery, which should enable students to learn about themselves as much as about the work of others; to realise their own potential. As teachers we have to create the right environment for this to happen.

    Set attainable goals for your students. Students who focus on what they are unlikely to achieve will invariably under-perform. When the brain sees the exam as a threat, it will literally avoid the problem: we have all found ourselves reading a question, in a state of over-anxiety, only to discover that we are unable to recall what we have just read! In the past I have encouraged some students to try to complete only the first two parts of the questions, telling them that the latter parts are for “bonus points”. The boost in confidence that this approach stimulates, combined with the subsequent praise and encouragement, which should never be lacking, always leads to progress.

  2. Jessie Campbell permalink
    July 19, 2011 9:18 pm

    Thanks for the post. I heard you speak at a KSU Noyce meeting and now that I have a job, I have a twitter account (thanks to your advice). I look forward to being able to follow some great physics teachers.

    • July 24, 2011 1:35 am

      Congratulations! I hope you’ll join us for some future Atlanta Metro Physics Meetings.

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