Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Good Teaching outshines Good Technology

Okay, quick post here…trying to get down some thoughts before I lose them in the drifting snow…

I was very impressed with last night and the EC & I 831 class that I was privileged to be a part of. This online class was a treat for me!!1 I cannot thank Alec Couros enough for allowing me to partake in this extraordinary event. If I am not mistaken, I think that the two presenters, Dr. Rick Schwier and Dr. Jay Wilson, were broadcasting from the University of Saskatoon, while Alec was at the University of Regina. Myself, well I was at home parenting, cooking and doing dishes! I also believe that many other people in attendance were also at places other than the Uni of Regina.

Miles apart yet all together! Fantastic!!

I must admit that I found myself watching these presenters with a rather removed perspective at times, as I noticed that I was taking mental notes regarding the techniques used to present rather than the content being delivered. This is in no way a slight, but rather kudos of sorts, as I kept asking myself why it was that I was so engaged with this type of classroom. After watching for a bit, it dawned on me that these two fine gentlemen modelled excellent teaching strategies: humour, knowledge of the material, and a sense that they really cared about what they were delivering. It was not the technology that was fascinating, but rather good teaching strategies being used by two good teachers! Perhaps good is understating it…

Anyway, being a bit of a propeller head, the technology drew me in, the teachers kept me engaged…is that not the way it should be?

Thanks again Alec for letting me be an interloper,




Richard Schwier said...

Thanks for the very kind comments, Stephen. We were privileged to be invited to present in EC&I 831. Yes, we were coming from the U of Saskatchewan last night, but isn't it great that nobody was really sure?

We have a very close relationship with Alec and the program at the U of R, and we're inventing ways to collaborate that transcend the usual boundaries that universities set up. Alec is fabulous, and it's always a treat to work with him on anything he does, because everything he does is so exciting and ... real!

John Ferguson said...

It is a great point that you make. Good teaching will always shine through regardless of the technology that one chooses to use or not to use.