The following quote from Michael (2001) was circulated at the Variety in Chemistry Education 2010 conference today. I though it was worthwhile to share!
We would never dream of going into the research lab without knowing the latest methodologies and without knowing what those other “experts” out there are thinking about. But we routinely do just that when we go into the classroom. So, we need to teach the way we do research. We need to start by educating ourselves through faculty development programs, through our own reading…and by attending teaching sessions at professional meetings… The list of possibilities is a long one.
And we need to approach the phenomena that occur in our classrooms, what works and what doesn’t work, what helps our students to learn and what doesn’t seem to help them, with the same attitude of inquiry with which we approach interesting phenomena in the laboratory. We must be prepared to “experiment,” to make changes in what we do and how we do it when we observe that things aren’t working or when we learn about better ways to accomplish whatever we seek to accomplish. If nothing else, such an approach to teaching makes teaching a more intellectually stimulating activity and, as a bonus, a lot more fun!
Joel Michael “In Pursuit of Meaningful Learning” Advances in Physiology Education 25: 145-158 2001 (Extract from page 156).