Teach technical skills to a group [...]

instead of standing in front of the class and walking the students through the steps as one, I seated the students in groups and instructed each student to go through the tutorial individually.

This is simple and head-smackingly obvious, but it has a number of positive effects. First, students can work at their own pace. College students, of course, are perfectly good at entertaining themselves on computers if they finish early, so there’s not as much pressure on the slower people to work quickly. Second, students can ask each other for help as a first line of defense. Duh. Of course they like to do that. It’s so much easier to lean over and ask a tablemate what you missed than to raise your hand in front of the whole class. Third, it’s fun for them. They can laugh and joke with each other, rather than sit in silence as I repeat information that’s right in front of them anyway.

The final missing piece was Post-It notes, a strategy I borrowed from Deb Verhoeven. (Thanks, Deb!) Every student starts with a green Post-It note on her laptop. That means everything’s OK. Run into a problem that they need me for? Swap it out for red. Finished? Swap it out for white. (Source)

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