Search This Blog

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

When students are given a choice, they take it

We, the faculty, have been talking with the students about treating them as co-learners. We have been talking about treating them as people, with values, interests, motivations of their own.

Among the first thing that we discovered is that they want to exercise their human rights:  During the times that they don't have assigned classes, they asked if they have to "be there."
They want to choose to be in a different place, rather than be in a kind of study hall with everyone else. Some want to go get something to eat, some want to go to a library.

It was perhaps a mistake to make me the first "monitor" of studio time. When the students asked me if they had to be there, my response was that I had no desire to police their behavior.  I had a desire that they learn and that their projects are served, but I didn't want to tell them where to be when. Many of them left at that point.  About an hour later, another SUSTAIN instructor returned to the room and was disappointed to find that people had left.

One of the things that we as faculty espouse, is that learning is not equal to a butt in a seat for a particular duration of time.  Yet, the entire system is designed that way and we have not only come to expect it, we have come to insist upon it, or we feel "cheated."

At the end of the week, we will re-assess what we have collectively learned.

No comments:

Post a Comment