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Achieving Harmony: Tuning into Practice

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Wednesday, June 17
 

1:45pm PDT

CON03.CreativeDiscussion01 - Go outside and learn
Join this session to leave the four walls of the conference session, explore ways to apply the ‘outside world’, be it the natural or the built environment, to aspects of your teaching and your students’ learning. Nesbit and Mayer (2010) point to the affective learning gains, especially student beliefs about the course topic, as a result of field trips. Other studies (e.g., Matsuoka, 2010) show that exposure to nature enhances academic performance. Activities conducted in green space can reduce the symptoms of Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD (e.g., Taylor & Kuo, 2009). 

This session, which will take place entirely outdoors (rain or shine) has an application for teachers of any discipline, and for educational developers working with teachers. At times, you might take your students outside, while at other times, maybe you can bring the ‘outside’ in. We will work through individual and small group work and by modeling of techniques I use in my own teaching and facilitation.

This session might also help you to find new ways to motivate students by making connections to their daily lives and interests. Could these strategies enhance your students' understanding of course material and help them achieve the learning outcomes of the course? Leave with at least three ideas you can apply to your teaching and/or facilitating that brings the inside out, or the outside in, as a way to add some ‘fresh air’ to your next course or seminar. We will even get some fresh air and do a bit of ‘nature-watching’ in the process!

Matsuoka, R. (2010). Student performance and high school landscapes: Examining the links. Landscape Urban Planning, 97, 273-82

Nesbit, S. and A. Mayer. (2010). Shifting Attitudes: The Influence of Field Trip Experiences on Student Beliefs. Transformative Dialogues. Volume 4. Issue 2. November, 2010.

Taylor, A, & Kuo, F. (2009). Children with attention deficits concentrate better after walk in the park. Journal of Attention Disorders, 12, 402-9

Speakers
avatar for Alice Cassidy

Alice Cassidy

Principal, In View Education and Professional Development
Alice Cassidy is an educational developer, science educator and wildlife biologist. She has designed, taught and coordinated courses at the University of British Columbia, and led large-scale educational programs. As a consultant, she leads workshops on teaching and learning. She... Read More →



Wednesday June 17, 2015 1:45pm - 2:45pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk

1:45pm PDT

CON03.CreativeDiscussion02 - Tuning into dissonance and resonance in post-secondary communities of practice
How can post-secondary institutions remain responsive to emerging requirements and not just reactive to short term conditions? We live in times of great uncertainty and rapid change that call us all to respond with our highest capabilities. Traditionally, the culture of academia reinforces a habit of separation, and while we are beginning to use collaborative approaches with our students, we have yet to fully embrace these concepts among faculty. We know for our students that learning, as a social phenomenon, is catalyzed in holding environments designed with developmental intention. What might be possible if we more intentionally create faculty learning environments that support and challenge us at the leading edge of our potential?

Communities of practice (CoPs) are ideal holding environments to create a bridge across difference, and assist us in continually stepping into the unknown. This involves first recognizing and surfacing dissonance or resonance as an embodied feeling in the present moment, choosing to sit with it and be curious, and then opening to new possibilities. During this one hour deep dive conversation, participants will experience a mini CoP based on Dr. McAlister’s recent research, and the work of Cox and Richlin (2004), Palmer and Zajonc (2010), Scharmer (2009), and Wenger (1998). Presencing techniques will be used to explore emerging themes from the conference, and then to consider how CoPs might fit within the culture of our own institutions. 

References:

Cox, M., & Richlin, L. (eds.) (2004). Building faculty learning communities. New Directions for Teaching and Learning. (No. 97). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Palmer, P. & Zajonc, A. (2010). The heart of higher education: A call to renewal. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Scharmer, C. O. (2009). Theory U: Leading from the future as it emerges. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.

Wenger, E. (1998). Communities of practice: Learning, meaning and identity.Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Speakers

Wednesday June 17, 2015 1:45pm - 2:45pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk

1:45pm PDT

CON03.CreativeDiscussion03 - Writing into our teaching challenges: Four creative writing exercises to deepen reflective practice
Numerous studies have shown that writing about traumatic or otherwise stressful events in our lives makes us healthier and helps us function better as professionals (Pennebaker 2004). As educators, we face potentially stressful experiences every day, especially as we engage with our most challenging students. As such, the positive impact of personal journaling on teaching practice specifically is also well established (Stevens and Cooper 2009).

Recently, education researchers have begun to consider whether creative writing in multiple genres – that is, beyond mere diarizing – might also assist in fostering academic reflective practice (Rath & Edgington, 2014). Rath and Edgington suggest the use of poetry to prompt reflection upon teaching. I would like to expand upon this suggestion by making the case, through this interactive workshop, that writing exercises normally reserved for fiction writing classes may also provide powerful opportunities for teachers in all fields to reflect deeply on their practice as educators.

In this workshop session, participants will explore a recent traumatic or otherwise stressful teaching situation from their own experience using four creative writing exercises. These writing prompts were originally devised to help fiction writers delve more deeply into the psychologies of their characters and the trajectory of their stories; now we will repurpose them to help us tune into our own teaching practice. This workshop will be a creative experiment with the potential to yield real insight into our behaviour as educators.

Pennebaker, J.W. (2004) Writing to Heal: A Guided Journal for Recovering from Trauma and Emotional Upheaval. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger.

Rath, J., & Edgington, U. (2014) There is Rhyme and Reason: Using Creative Writing to Enable and Enhance Academic Reflective Practice (abstract). Australian Association for Research in Education conference.

Stevens, D.D., & Cooper J.E. (2009) Journal Keeping: How to Use Reflective Writing for Effective Learning, Teaching, Professional Insight, and Positive Change. Sterling, VA: Stylus.


Wednesday June 17, 2015 1:45pm - 2:45pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk

3:00pm PDT

CON04.CreativeDiscussion01 - YO-GAgné’s events of instruction (Achieving harmony – tuning into practice)
Limited Capacity seats available

For intentional learning to occur, we have to attend physically to the learning environment, to be mentally prepared to learn, and to be tuned into the present moment. Whether we are in the classroom or at the computer, such body-mind harmony is a desirable state conducive to learning. Today, more than ever, students are faced with numerous distractions while trying to engage in the learning process. Many believe that they are capable of successfully navigating this challenging new environment, but it is often not the case. While we need to think of innovative ways to help students tune into the learning process, we might also look for inspiration in traditional and even ancient forms of teaching, learning, and practice, because while the technology evolves rapidly, human brains and behaviors do not change at the same pace. Yoga is a millennia old practice of achieving harmony of the mind, body, and spirit. Similarly to Gagné’s “Nine Events of Instruction,” a traditional Hatha Yoga class has, at the core of its structure, several mandatory events that aim to bring practitioners into the present moment, to prepare them for learning and practice both physically and mentally, and to guide, reinforce, and enhance retention. In this session, we will examine a traditional Hatha Yoga class in light of "events of instruction" and discuss possible strategies for helping students immerse in and get most out of the learning experience.

Farhi, D. (2006), Teaching Yoga: Exploring the Teacher-Student Relationship. Rodmell Press.

Gagné, R.M. (1985). The Conditions of Learning and Theory of Instruction (4th ed.). New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.

Kirschner, P. A., & Van Merriënboer, J. J. G. (2013). Do learners really know best? Urban legends in education. Educational Psychologist., 48:3, 169-183, doi: 10.1080/00461520.2013.804395

Smith, P. L., & Ragan, T. J. (2005). Instructional Design (3rd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Speakers
avatar for Maristela Petrovic-Dzerdz (Carleton University)

Maristela Petrovic-Dzerdz (Carleton University)

Instructional Design Coordinator, Carleton University
Education, Pedagogy, Distance Education, Instructional Design


Wednesday June 17, 2015 3:00pm - 4:00pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk

3:00pm PDT

CON04.CreativeDiscussion03 - Applying a concurrent experiential learning model: Peer leadership within an outdoor orientation program.
Brock BaseCamp has operated an outdoor orientation program for incoming students at Brock University from 2009 to 2015. From the program’s inception, peer leadership has been a foundation for the program model and delivery. Each orientation trip is facilitated by upper year students whose main tasks are delivery of the orientation program curriculum, leadership of the wilderness experience, acting as ambassadors for the institution and building relationships for future transitional support throughout the incoming students’ university experience. Peer mentorship has been shown to have a positive impact on academic success (Tremblay & Rodger, 2003), ability to foster personal and professional growth (Glass & Walter, 2000), and social support (Allen, McManus & Russell, 1999). The BaseCamp approach to peer leadership is influenced by a concurrent experiential learning model, with both the learners and leaders achieving educative and personal goals together. By employing a concurrent experiential learning model, the BaseCamp program is able to focus on the learning experiences for both the incoming students and the peer leaders. This workshop will present our concurrent model, offer suggestions for pedagogical design and delivery, and speak to some of the lessons we have encountered throughout our five years of program delivery. Expect both a presentation of our program model and small group discussions regarding experiential learning techniques and their relationship to peer mentorship.


Wednesday June 17, 2015 3:00pm - 4:00pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk

3:00pm PDT

CON04.CreativeDiscussion02 - What if you were an atom? Role playing as a mean to covey practical concepts in applied sciences
Role playing is a form of psychodrama, where individuals act adopted roles, accordingly improvising behavior in a structured setting. Role playing is often used for training professionals or in classrooms with subjects such as law, literature, history, languages, biology and other sciences. In higher education, role playing can be a strategy for student engagement in large classes: even when not all students are directly involved, role playing sessions are powerful means to induce independent thinking and active participation in the whole class. In the authors experience, interesting results have emerged applying role playing to the teaching of physical phenomena or technology apparatuses and processes: guiding students to behave for example as atoms in a water molecule, or electrical charges in a modern computer has very positive implications on class engagement and the understanding of critical concepts.

The discussion is addressed to teachers and teaching staff interested in methodologies for "participatory learning" and students engagement in large classes. The proposal targets a 50-minute deep-dice conversation:

(10 mins) Introducing literature guidelines for role playing in classroom

(20 mins ) Case Studies: description of results emerged applying role playing to the teaching of physical phenomena or technology apparatuses and processes 

(20 mins): DISCUSSION: Attendees are encouraged to (i) comment on feasibility, limitations and benefits of introducing role playing in their area of expertise (ii) discuss the potential of role playing for student engagement and as a way to increase material learning and assessment skills


Wednesday June 17, 2015 3:00pm - 4:00pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk
 
Thursday, June 18
 

11:30am PDT

CON06.CreativeDiscussion01 - Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation Page Turners: Not your average book club!
Book clubs are popular not only for recreational reading, but also in educational settings to support teachers in “tuning into practice” (Kooy, 2009). Online, hybrid and face-to-face professional book clubs enhance community, and inspire cross-disciplinary discussions and networks. This deep-dive conversation analyzes the Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation's (CTSI) Page Turners, a multi-session book club model for faculty, developed and offered through CTSI at the University of Toronto. Based on the concept of literature circles (Lin, 2002), book club participants are in charge of their own learning, assisted by a facilitator who helps establish group norms, and sets the stage to maximize individual accountability and the development of positive interdependence. During this deep-dive conversation participants will be provided with an overview of the model, debrief a small group text protocol and engage in discussion in order to:
• examine how this book club model supports pedagogical professional development through the exploration of educational ideas, reflection on practice, discussion of innovation in teaching and aspirations for student learning 
• consider evidence-based design features, including practical tips on book club structure, determining group norms, building inclusion, establishing roles and responsibilities, and assessing learning
• analyze the value of using text protocols and other reading/discussion formats for facilitation (Lipton & Wellman, 2003) 
• determine applications of book club models in their own contexts and to serve a variety of professional learning needs.
Sample books that encourage instructors to explore pedagogical theory and research and practical student engagement techniques (e.g., Barkley, 2010) will be shared. 

References:

Barkley, E.F. (2010). Student engagement techniques. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Lin, C-H. (2002). Literature circles. Eric Digest.file://localhost/Retrieved from http/::www.ericdigests.org:2003-3:circles.htm

Lipton, L. & Wellman, B. (2003). Mentoring matters: A practical guide to learning-focused relationships (2nd Ed). Sherman, CT: Mira Via.

Kooy, M. (2009). Collaborations and conversations in communities of learning: Professional development that matters. In C.C. Craig (Ed.), The Association of Teacher Educators’ Teacher Education Yearbook XVII: Teacher Learning in Small Group Settings (pp. 5-22). Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Publication/Rowan & Littlefield.


Thursday June 18, 2015 11:30am - 12:30pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk

11:30am PDT

CON06.CreativeDiscussion02 - The harmony of dissonance: Teaching and learning players
As instructors and leaders in the educational community the desire to constantly transform our teaching practice and create meaningful learning opportunities for students remains a constant priority. Augusto Boal, founder of the Theatre of the Oppressed and a student of Paolo Friere, stated that, “To transform is to be transformed. The action is, in itself transforming “ (Boal, 1979, p. xxi). Through this interactive session, designed collectively by faculty, graduate students and educational developers, the “actors” will transform themselves into characters that face dissonance in their teaching practice. This Theatre for Living format (Diamond, 2007) will explore issues including academic integrity, English as an additional language, technology use in the classroom, student motivation and more through short lightly-scripted and improvised scenes. In this active space where everyone (audience and actor, alike) become creators, participants are able to re-imagine problems and conundrums, explore creative possibilities without fear of failure and honour the personal and relational dynamics inherent in any issue. Meant to provoke dialogue and engage the senses, facilitated conversation will follow each of the scenes. Each scene will be influenced by current research in the aforementioned topics and provide an opportunity for participants to share their own practices and ways of addressing issues. Due to the improvisatory nature of this session, there will also be the opportunity to incorporate relevant themes that emerge throughout the conference.

Boal, A. (1979) Theatre of the oppressed. New York, NY: Theatre Communications Group.

Diamond, D. (2007) Theatre for living. Victoria, BC: Trafford Publishing.

Speakers
SF

Sheri Fabian

Dr. Sheri Fabian is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Criminology at Simon Fraser University. Her teaching and research focus on minorities and justice, qualitative research methods, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. She is a mentor for the graduate student Certificate... Read More →


Thursday June 18, 2015 11:30am - 12:30pm PDT
STLHE Registration Desk