Create an introductory activity connected to your discipline to get to know your learners. Here are some examples for more ‘traditional’ subjects; how might you apply a similar idea?
- In a Human Geography class, you could ask every student to identify a location from which they would want to conduct field work, and why.
- For English Literature, each student could discuss what fictional character they would like to invite to dinner, and why.
- In History, ask what figure, living or dead, would be the most interesting to have at a cocktail party, and why.
Can you think of some fun and interesting questions for your discipline?
Share your thoughts here, and see what others are saying.
It is a great idea. As I am working in English Language Teaching, maybe I can ask their view on who would be the coach/teacher they wish to have from the theorists.
Good idea @naleen Who would be your choice? Would learners know about ELT theorists at all?
Fortunately yes. Unless they would definitely think i am crazy.
In Applied Management (including Supervisory Management principles and practices), an idea for an introductory activity to get to know my learners would be entitled, “ I learned about management from that! ”. Each learner would be asked to think back to a moment where they ( personally ) were either a manager or they were being managed by someone else and they perceived that something went ‘wrong’. They would then also explain why they thought what happened (to them) was ‘wrong’.
I have used this approach in the past with some success as the many anecdotes that are shared are often amusing and vary widely – thus providing an opportunity to highlight the many facets of applied management. However, strict rules must first be established (e.g. no names of organisations or people, or anything else that can clearly identify who the story is about) and this activity works best when in an entirely independent environment with learners from many different organisations.
I have found the stories provide a fairly accurate insight into what is important to each learner and how confident / comfortable they feel about speaking openly to peers – a skill that is highly valuable as a manager of people.
Great response @GrahamP , and I agree that those stories about personal experiences can give us an insight into the learner, as well as sharing examples of the complexities of applied management! I imagine that there would be stories of all kinds too - some amusing, some confronting… real food for thought for the learners to go away with.
A good point about establishing strict rules at the outset - hopefully something that learners come to realise needs to be ‘the norm’ in other discussions of this kind.