Tag Archives: teaching

Evolution Outside of the Science Classroom

If you’re a college instructor, and the subject of evolution comes up in a class, and you are not a scientist yourself, what should you say about it to your students? Here are some things that might help you think … Continue reading

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How to Really Make a World of Humanists: Helen Vendler Urges Training in Close Reading

In a recent essay for Harvard Magazine, the great Helen Vendler pushes back against our teach-to-the-test/Twitter-texting culture, eloquently calling on parents and teachers, including those teaching college, to train young people in close, as opposed to merely proficient, reading: Without reading, there … Continue reading

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Critical Thinking in the Classroom Watch: What Miguel Aguilar Does

In the Los Angeles Times this weekend is an article about an unusually successful 5th grade teacher in LA Unified, Miguel Aguilar, and I notice that he very specifically teaches critical thinking to his students. Here, for example, is how the Times describes … Continue reading

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Two Questions for Professors: Are You Demanding and Do You Teach Critical Thinking?

The following is in Salon today: [W]hat if the downward trend in learning extends into the echelons of higher education? That’s what Richard Arum argues in “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses.” Arum, a sociology and education professor at … Continue reading

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In praise of Chateauneuf (Voltaire’s godfather and tutor)

Below are some rather impious lines from La Moisade, a 17th century French satirical poem (author unknown). It opens with this sass of Mosaic legislation: A teaching so irrelevant Shall not my doubts destroy? With empty sophism thou shalt not My reason … Continue reading

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Lecturing Doesn’t Work?

The NY Times reports today that, at M.I.T, the traditional freshman physics lecture class of 300 students or more is being replaced by hands-on learning in small groups. Money quote: The physics department has replaced the traditional large introductory lecture with … Continue reading

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