My teaching material is seldom disseminated in the direct instruction format. I use various models for my instruction design, the selection of which reflects the general attitude and capability of my classroom. My teaching model responds to the classroom. It evolves throughout the semester in terms of teaching style, assessment strategies and improvisation according to the situation.
In this age of technology and the availability of overwhelming information, instructors often struggle to focus, redirect, motivate and maintain the attention of the learner. I have access to educational technology tools that are integrated seamlessly into my lecture in order to enhance its appeal to the learner and ease of retention. I am an avid technology implementer, just like most of my learners.
I place a high value in learning and acquiring knowledge. I also place a higher level of expectation from my students. I double as a life coach when it comes to motivating students to pursue their educational journey with zest and determination. This approach also enables me to create a student-centered learning environment that propels them forward instead of the curriculum centered learning environment that dangerously borders on boredom. I also have this innate desire to acquire new knowledge and share it with everyone around me. I am in my element when I talk about new ideas and I believe I can inspire my students to uncover their hidden potentials. By completing this doctorate program I can confidently establish myself as an excellent example for my students.
Course Material Design: Designing course materials is a constructivist and a social process for me. I place high value on mastery and measurable learning. For this reason, the most preferred method of course design I employ is the Personalized System of Instruction method or the PSI, adapted from the Keller Plan. Although this plan is time sensitive, but it has proved to be a brilliant motivator for low to middle achieving students in acquiring their learning goals.
Another non-traditional method employed in my teaching is the Case Based Teaching method. This method is closer to social constructivism teaching and encourages maximum learner participation and responsibility on the learner. I introduce learning goal related real life cases in the form of hardcopies or multimedia for them to debate on and deduce their own unique conclusions. The main idea is to share each other's perspectives and broaden their scope in the topic. Everyone becomes a teacher!
I also encourage my students to use maximum amount of multimedia and hyper media to enhance their learning pleasure. I requests a classroom picture of each, uploaded on their course webpages that records their learning portfolio and other activities related to the course. This forms the basis of Constructionist or Project Based Model. Students thrive on immediate feedback. I aim to provide constant feedback for efficient learning and to minimize discouragement and frustrations.
When teaching courses like English Language Creative Writing or College Level Writing, I mix students with varying language and linguistic capabilities to promote Cooperative Learning. This ensures a better flow of instruction between the instructor and the student as well as the student and the student. Cooperative learning is an excellent way to create a team spirit in the classroom. Works well with cohorts in higher education.
Cognitive Apprenticeship is another method to challenge the learner at a level higher than their existing one. This mode of teaching is introduced towards the middle of the semester, when I have a better understanding of each individual needs of the learner.
A well rounded teaching plan has all of the above teaching elements in any course I design. I enjoy a well-developed teaching plan, and my enthusiasm shows in my classroom!