In June 2014, T. H. N. Gellar-Goad began a seven part series of blog posts for the Society of Classical Studies. These posts took the insights from How Learning Works by Susan Ambrose et al. and discussed how to apply these ideas to teaching Latin and Greek. The last post of the series was in July 2015. They are all excellent and helpful. I provide links to them below, especially because the SCS website has recently changed and old links may have become dead.
- Part 1: How novices and experts mentally organize ideas in different ways. In this post, Gellar-Goad recommends considering using “advance organizers” and concept maps to help students make connections and think more like an expert would.
- Part 2: How to motivate students. In this post, Gellar-Goad focuses on how to help students believe that Latin is valuable and possible to be learned and that their education is supported by the teacher and their peers (See my related posts on the value of Classics and struggle).
- Part 3: Practice and feedback. This post is rich in examples of and links to ways of teaching students how to learn and how to practice and study ancient languages (both in and outside class), and of ways we can provide good feedback to the students (See my related posts on test corrections, grading translations, and grading “grammar”).
- Part 4: Students’ prior knowledge and/or misconceptions. This post discusses how to gauge students’ prior knowledge, respond to misconceptions, and make connections with their prior knowledge, along with why we should be aware/cautious of passing students on to the next level without sufficient knowledge.
- Part 5: Mastery. This post explores how to teach students to perform the constituent tasks involved in reading a sentence–i.e. the things the teacher/master does automatically and unconsciously.
- Part 6: Metacognition. Students need to learn how to learn, plan, strategize how to work and improve, and reflect on what works. In this post, Gellar-Goad discusses these steps of metacognition, an idea that I have discussed in an earlier post.
- Part 7: How a course’s climate can interact with students’ identity and development. Gellar-Goad’s last post explores how students are all in various stages of development and how our class’s atmosphere can be more accepting of diversity in order to motivate students and prevent stereotypes from hindering their learning (See also my posts on diversity and teaching students with dyslexia and “disabilities“).
These are all very good posts, and I hope to return to many of the topics and ideas in these posts for my own classes and my future blog posts.