SHARING THE PLATFORM OF INSTRUCTION
Do you share the platform of instruction with your students? How comfortable are you in sharing this platform? What are your prohibitions in doing so? Are you afraid that they will perform this task better than you? I am happy if they do then that is a really good indicator that they ‘got it.’
I’ll like to share one of the many examples in which I share the platform with my students.
This past Tuesday my students did a very short quiz (formative assessment) on deriving the ideal gas constant (R = 0.082057 L.atm K−1 mol−1), formula is PV = nRT. Since this is not a blog about the ideal gas constant, I will not go into details on what it is. We discussed this concept in class and the students were supposed to have read on it. However, many of the students were not able to derive the constant. I asked a student (William), to explain the ideal gas constant to the class. Keep in mind that I am not singling out William to be the ‘brainiac’ in the class. I am pleased to say that all of my students who have remained in the class can ‘do’ chemistry. William went up to the board and wrote the derivation of the ideal gas constant. His delivery of the content was in my opinion was that of a ‘master’ level. His classmates were very pleased and appreciative of his teaching style. Some commented, “that was great, thanks!” To which I told William that he should consider a future in teaching. Of course, he is bent on entering the medical field and teaching may not be of an interest to him. Nevertheless, he like many of his classmates is ‘good’ at it.
As the old adage by the French writer Joseph Joubert goes, “To Teach is to Learn Twice.”