Last semester, my Roman archaeology students wrote a paper about the relief to the right and how it fit within the larger Augustan sculptural and building program. I really enjoyed the paper assignment because the acts of agreeing or disagreeing with and of evaluating their analyses encouraged me to more carefully consider and appreciate this relief … Continue reading Thoughts towards better paper assignments
Today was a little different at the University of Dayton. Instead of regular classes, there was the Stander Symposium, a one-day conference-style day of classes where undergraduate and graduate students present their own research. Admittedly, yesterday, I didn't really know what to expect. Today, I saw posters sharing science research and I spent the afternoon … Continue reading Stander Symposium
This semester, I'm team-teaching a class, and it's been a great way to exchange ideas about pedagogy. My co-teacher taught me this trick for grading papers. As she grades papers, she records comments about the papers, a preliminary grade, and then the actual grade on a class roster. I did that with my most recent … Continue reading Grading Papers, Records, and Consistency
This week, Boston Public Schools announced that they were changing the maps in their classrooms from the Mercator Projection to the Peters Projection (below). Now, my students have probably caught on that I like to use a lot of maps in my PowerPoints (here, here, here, and here). I have also always loved the scenes from The West … Continue reading Maps and Social Justice
NPR put together a cool quiz to test whether your believe myths about how learning works and best teaching/learning practices. Go take it here! I got 6/7. I was tempted by the correct answer on the one I got wrong, and I am tempted to make it a greater part of my courses.
I have been frustrated with students' analyses of primary sources. To be blunt, their interpretations seem superficial, not always tied too closely to the evidence, and usually are completely lacking nuance. I've been puzzled about how to teach these skills more effectively, and how to get students to read more critically. I have thought back … Continue reading In-class discussions of primary sources
Last week in our World history course, my co-teacher asked our students what they found interesting about their reading on Islam, or about what it made them curious. Many of the students were interested in how it related to our other readings, so we set about considering how to help our students make connections among the various lessons. One … Continue reading Timelines
This semester, I'm trying to improve on last semester's online quizzes that ensured students did the reading and tested their comprehension. For that process, I provided students with a set of reading comprehension questions and then wrote a new (though somewhat similar) set of questions for the quizzes, which had to be matching, true/false, or multiple choice … Continue reading Online Discussion Fora
Last semester, as I as teaching Roman archaeology, I realized part way into the semester that I was really teaching a course about ideology and the spread of Roman culture into the provinces (Perhaps uncoincidentally that's a large part of my specialty). Once I had this realization, I regretted that I had not realized or … Continue reading Structuring courses around themes
Today I received an e-mail about a great website: topostext.org. Like geopedia.de (my post on it), this website combines maps and other information--texts, in this case--for wonderful results. Even though this website is relatively new, I can attest to its power because of Robert Strassler's Landmark Herodotus, Landmark Thucydides, and Landmark Xenophon which also combine texts and … Continue reading Topos text – a great website!