We don’t really want to talk about it, so don’t ask, but this week’s Engaging Teaching topic is leading a group discussion. The Girl Guide/Scout motto, “Be Prepared,” is also the motto for facilitating quality group discussions and resisting oppressive regimes. Who would’ve guessed!? Here are 5 keys to help you be prepared to facilitate a quality group discussion:
Sufficient Prior Knowledge | Appropriate Topic | Discussion Guidelines
Guiding Discussions with Questioning | Culminating or Summarizing
Like we said, we don’t really want to talk about leading group discussions, so here’s a link to some actual details for improving group discussions.
D2L Thing of the Week: Content
The meat & potatoes of D2L is the content area. All the stuff should be there: PowerPoints, html files, readings, videos, dropboxes, quizzes, & discussion boards. Here are some instructions for making best use of this digital landscape.
Did you know you can get to content in just 2 clicks upon entering D2L? This is very exciting news for those of us who are frugal with our clicking. Here’s how: 1) click course name. 2) Click “Content Browser” in the widget header.
Non-D2L Thing of the Week: PowerPoint
Now, to do this right, let’s be clear about what PowerPoint is and what it isn’t.
- What it is: a slide deck. A visual complement to an engaging talk or seminar.
- What it isn’t: a lecture, or a piece of curriculum in and of itself.
We all want our PowerPoint slides to reach their potential, so please sit your slides down in a quiet spot and give them this unsolicited advice:
- Be a slide of few words: You are a slide. You’re only here for emphasis. You’re not the whole show; you’re a back-up singer.
- Look good: Wear a nice picture as your background. You can find cool, shareable pics for your outfit using Creative Commons Flickr Search, or make your own!
- Be there for everybody: Get yourself checked for accessibility issues, and then fix them.
Services for Students
This week’s hub is dubbed the New Addition Edition for good reason. It’s because we have a new, younger, and shinier sibling blogging alongside us: Introducing The Student Hub! If you haven’t guessed yet, it’s written for (and soon by) students, in a similar vein to the Teaching Hub. Check it out here, and let us know if you’d like to get involved in it. The pay is great.
Policies & Procedures
You can drop the needle any time you want, but dropping courses requires a little timeliness. So here are 2 dates to consider:
- February 10th (for courses of 8 weeks or less)
- March 17th (for 8+ week courses)
These are the final dates to withdraw from courses & receive a “W” instead of an “F” designation on your Academic Record. In summary, if completing a course is not an option right now, “W” = good, “F” = bad.
There are also lots of other important dates in the Academic Schedule, like the fast-approaching Independent Learning Week (February 27th – March 3rd).
For the second time this semester, those rascals in IT have won the college department of the week battle. This week we held a mashed potato-mashing contest and Rick “Patches” Robinson mashed his potatoes so smooth and creamy that we were tempted to put it in our coffee. Good on ya, Rick! See Rick here describing the way of life that is the IT Service Desk.
Faculty Cyber Connections is designed for faculty wishing to advance their teaching practice through online collaboration with other colleagues across Ontario. The design of the program enables participants to analyze teaching and learning strategies, while exploring emerging technologies. Modules are 6-8 hours over a 4-week period.
To sign up, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
This past week we’ve had a lot of in-the-office chatter from students about collaborative note-taking. Two groups of students have taken on the challenge of managing a Google drive or Microsoft OneDrive to create and share a space that allows them to take notes for their classes. Students manage the workflow, sharing, and contributions from other students. Once the collaborative notes folder is set up, it can be shared on a D2L course page, through email, or through OneDrive.
If you are curious and want to know more, drop down and see us OR email us; we’ll be happy to chat: LDSTeam@flemingcollege.ca
Looking for more information, or want to chat with Jodie about your favourite episode of “Black Mirror”? Visit the LDS Team website, give us a call at extension 1216, follow us on Twitter @FlemingLDS, or send us an email: LDSTeam@flemingcollege.ca!