Now and then, I come across some thoughts on teaching that I think are worth sharing. That happened yesterday here at the Robins School of Business. My email to our faculty and staff is below. No matter what the individual jobs are here at Richmond, we are all in the education business. This place exists, at least in large part, to maximize the knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of our students. Passing information like this along to others can help keep teaching (and the thinking about teaching) alive as an important part of our culture.
You can do the same thing in your building. Whenever you learn something about teaching that you feel might also help others who face similar challenges, then pass it along. Don't be timid. Don't be shy.
A friend of mine here at the University of Richmond passed along the following URL of a recent NPR discussion with Ken Bain. Everything Dr. Bain says about teaching seems worth a few moments of consideration so I thought I would pass it along to everyone.
As some of you might remember, Dr. Bain spoke on campus to the Richmond faculty about 8-10 years ago. Several of us had the great pleasure of taking Dr. Bain and his wife out to dinner that evening (at the old Peking Restaurant) before his talk to the faculty.
As a true southerner, I try to have one story about everything. Here is my one story about Ken Bain (which I have repeated countless times). That evening, he spoke to about 50-70 faculty members. About halfway through his talk, someone in the back asked: “How can a person become a great teacher?” Bain stopped immediately and responded: “Oh, is that what you want to know? Well, that is an easy question to answer. I can tell anyone how to become a great teacher in just one sentence. All you have to do is get your students to care about what you are trying to teach them.” I continue to believe that is one of the most fabulous pieces of teaching advice that I have ever heard.
Here is what he had to say recently on NPR:
As is often the case on the Internet, the comments after the article are random, amusing, and—at time—insightful.