Wednesday, February 15, 2017

May I Have My Chalk Board Back, Please?

Our college had a nice blend of old and new as they work hard to have a good teaching and learning environment. I really do appreciate the technology, although I don't understand it all, at our fingertips. Today, I showed a good movie off of You Tube about the Glorious Revolution. Gone are the days when we have to lug in VCR's or even DVD players. It is all at our fingertips.  However, it is difficult for me to understand what plugs into where and how.  I thankfully had one of my own children in the class to help today. James Martin came to the rescue when it came time to get everything set up. I will have to master this myself since he is GRADUATING this semester! Many of us remember the old filmstrip projectors and the record that BEEPS when it is time to go to the next frame. Having said that, I do miss my chalkboard. I have a dry erase board now, and I like it, but I miss the chalk board.  [ I had to teach one semester in a classroom with one of the SMARTBOARDS--I  didn't think I would make it]. All of this AV stuff helps make the class room more entertaining, but there is no substitute for putting pen to paper and chalk to the board and TEACHING through lectures, reading and good note taking.


I am troubled, too, by the shrinking attention spans young people have today.  This problem is often exacerbated by a touch of rudeness. Today, after a "multi-media" class with film accompanying the lecture, a student had found one of the poems mentioned in the lecture.  He was going to read a bit of it . . . that showed a lot of initiative, I thought. The entire time he was reading, however, they were all packing up their books to go.  The only exception was James Martin (our youngest son) who sat listening. 


These are not bad students or students that are rude beyond how their generation usually acts. I was just a little surprised.  I have had some heart-to -hearts with them this semester, and I don't think anything I have said or done has really changed their ability to see themselves. 
Oh well . . .
I am grateful for them and the fact that I have this position.

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