This sub-committee is being formed in response to a feeling from the CAIS Professional Development Commission that “the wheel has turned” in regard to how young people born since the late 1980’s (now 1-22 years old) learn and relate to the world around them. To say that this is the first generation of true “Digital Natives” is to employ a buzz-concept for perhaps good generalizing purpose. What these kids-to-recent college graduates know, how they know it, and how they would choose to learn perhaps most everything if allowed to design their own tools of instruction will be the focus of this sub-committee. We are looking for young faculty members who identify with this group (perhaps are in it, even) more than some of us older “beginning to end” syllabus-learners who are also invited to help populate this learning group. Please consider a young teacher to recommend to me for sub-committee recruitment!
Our chief goal is to generate a set of 21st century methods to use to better reach our millennial students. This does not mean, of course, that we are planning to simply clear the tub of all bathwater and babies, but that we will be aiming to do three things simultaneously:
a.) adopt/advocate for new teaching tools (web applications, etc.) with which to teach “bedrock subject matter” in core courses (e.g., The Declaration of Independence, Huckleberry Finn, declensions of the verb “gustar”, the structure of DNA, etc.)
b.) design/promote approaches to syllabi and curricular skills areas (e.g., note-taking in various subjects, grammar workshops, lab steps and protocols) which will be more attractive and user-friendly to millennial students
c.) consider new teaching tools– for collaboration, essay drafting, math graphing– and student capacities which suggest that linear/dated teaching methods need to be jettisoned in favor of whole new classroom methodologies
If you are interested in joining this vital commission which will indeed hope to shape instructional practices in our “classrooms of today and tomorrow”, please respond to this blog post or e-mail me, Bill Hunter, at bhunter@hamden hall.org
Thanks for considering,