Sunday, January 1, 2012

Welcome to pedagogishness

If it's 2012, this must be pedagogishness. Yes, in 2012, I am starting a pedagogy blog. I thought of calling it paedagogus (Latinate) or paidagogos (transliteration of the Greek), but neither was available as a subdomain on Blogger, so I went whimsical and decided to call it pedagogishness. In the end, I think that was a good thing. Pedagogy itself is like that sometimes: you think you are going to do something in your course design or your classroom, and circumstances force you to do something else, and the something else turns out to be better than you could have hoped for or imagined, and better than anything it would ever have occurred to you to plan. So, pedagogish insight #1: Take innovation whence it comes.

So what is a pedagogy blog, and what business do I have writing one? Well this blog, at any rate, is going to be a place where I share ideas and insights based on my own experience in the classroom. I can't help using that phrase, "in the classroom," but the fact is (pedagogish insight #2), good pedagogy begins W-A-Y before you ever set foot in the classroom. So course design is going to be a big part of this blog. And for the moment, what I'm thinking of as course design is not so much the topic of the course (although I may get to that at some point, too) as things like learning objectives, assessment tools (i.e., quizzes, exams, writing assignments, etc), planning assignments, incorporating writing, and so on.

Another big topic, linked somewhat to that of learning objectives, is critical thinking and the prospects for teaching it. Lots to say about that, in due time.

Another thing I'm interested in might be thought of as the flip-side of learning objectives, and that is teaching objectives: why do I want to teach this course? Or, more likely, why do I want to teach, period? As someone who resumed work on a long-deferred doctorate after more than a decade in a successful corporate career, and upon earning that doctorate, quite in mid life, embarked on a full-on academic career--well, I think I may have a thought or two on why we teach.

OK, this post is supposed to be an intro, welcome, etc, and here it is, getting on the long side, so let me wrap this up. Expect to see my next post in about a week, on a topic yet to be determined, but I'm leaning towards learning objectives, about which much to say. For now: finished!

1 comment:

  1. Good luck with this blog. As someone who is indirectly involved in teaching...I like to think of it more as instruction, I often wonder why I like doing it