Friday @ the Center
October 1, 2010
First Friday @ the Center
As I assume the role of Director for the Center, I have decided to continue with the F@C e-mails. I always liked Susan VanZanten’s e-mails on Friday. They contained useful information, an encouraging word to keep plugging away at becoming a better teacher and were a palatable reminder that I made it through another week. I won’t have the lovely turns of phrase that Susan offered and will probably have more metrics but I hope to deliver information, tools and services that enhance our vocations and build community.
Day of Common Learning
We are 12 days away from our Day of Common Learning (October 13th) featuring Rev. Dr. Joab Lohara, Free Methodist Bishop and Director of AIM India. In the afternoon, over 35 faculty, staff and students will facilitate 18 different sessions related to the day’s topics of India and issues related to global Christianity. See the CSFD website for a preview of these sessions.
Faculty Book Circles
The center is offering three book circles this year associated with conversations we are having across campus. Each book club will meet at 4pm for one hour approximately once a month in the Library Administrative Conference Room. If you are interested in joining any of these circles and can commit to at least half of the meetings, please contact Anna Miller to register and receive a free copy of the book.
In Spite of the Gods: The Rise of Modern India (Edward Luce; 2008, Anchor press) As a way to continue our conversation around India and globalization,former Financial Times New Delhi Bureau Chief, Edward Luce’s provides a very accessible view into the paradoxes that make up modern India: Nuclear power, cutting edge technology, heavily bureaucratic albeit democratic government, mass poverty, intensely focused wealth, and an entrenched caste system. Dates: 11/16, 1/25, 2/15, 3/8, 4/26 & 5/10
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness (Michelle Alexander; 2010 New Press) According to a Justice Department report released in July 2003 approximately 10% of African-American men between the ages of 25 to 29 were incarcerated in the U.S. At the same time only, 2.4% of Hispanic men and 1.2% of white men in that same age group were incarcerated. According to legal scholar Michelle Alexander, those lopsided rates are not due to increased crime levels but a system of social control reminiscent of the Jim Crow era. The Perkins’ Center will be hosting Michelle Alexander on January 25, 2011, and this book club will give us some time and space to prepare for her upcoming visit. Dates: 11/9, 1/18, 2/8, 3/1, 4/12 & 5/3
Leisure: The Basis of Culture (Josef Pieper; 1948/ 1998 St. Augustine Press) At our Spring in-service, University of Washington’s David Levy mentioned several books that have impacted his own thoughts on how he uses time. One of them was the German philosopher Joseph Pieper’s Leisure. In this book Pieper makes the case that not only is leisure the foundation for culture but that it is also necessary to allow time for the contemplation of the nature of God. This one-time book circle will discuss the first essay in the book which focuses on leisure. Come discuss this book to prepare hearts and minds for a more leisurely advent season. Date: 11/18
CSFD Display Case
Each year the Center displays work published by SPU faculty as a way to celebrate the faculty scholarship at Seattle Pacific. This year we will feature works that emphasize global themes in a variety of disciplines. If you have a recent publication that fits this category, please contact Anna Miller with the title and brief description of your work for consideration for the display.
It is not too late to join a Lectio Faculty Group to study Genesis with Frank Spina's guided readings. The following begin next week and still have room.
Thane Erickson (PSY) from SPFC.
Thursdays: 3 - 4pm, Kingswood
10/7, 10/14, 10/21, 10/28, 11/4, 11/18
Mondays: 8 - 9:30am, Kingswood
10/11, 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15
Mondays: 3:30 - 5pm, Peterson 2nd Fl. Conf. Rm
10/4, 10/11, 10/25, 11/8, 11/22, 12/6
Please contact Kelsey Holloway in the Center for Biblical and Theological Education if you are interested in joining one of these groups.
Perspectives on Teaching
As you return to the classroom this week, it might be a good time to pause and think a bit about your perspective on teaching. What values do you bring to the class as you stand in front of 26 young adults? UBC Education Professor, Daniel Pratt, and his associates have identified five distinct perspectives on teaching adults that they describe in their book, Five Perspectives on Teaching in Adult and Higher Education. While they note that instructors hold all five of these to some degree, some are more dominant than others for most.
- Transmission: Effective teaching requires a substantial commitment to the content or subject matter. Good teachers have mastery of the subject matter or content. It is a teacher’s primary responsibility to represent the content accurately and efficiently for learners.
- Apprenticeship: Effective teaching is a process of enculturating students into a set of social norms and ways of working. Good teachers know what their learners can do on their own and what they can do with guidance and direction; namely, engaging learners within their 'zone of development’.
- Developmental: Effective teaching must be planned and conducted “from the learner’s point of view”. Good teachers must understand how their learners think and reason about the content. The primary goal is to help learners develop increasingly complex and sophisticated cognitive structures for comprehending the content.
- Nurturing: Effective teaching assumes that long-term, hard, persistent effort to achieve comes from the heart, as well as the head. Good teachers promote a climate of caring and trust, helping people set challenging but achievable goals, and providing encouragement and support.
- Social Reform: Effective teaching seeks to change society in substantive way. Good teachers challenge the status quo and encourage students to consider the how learners are positioned and constructed in particular discourses and practices.
Interested in thinking about which perspectives you tend to hold? Pratt and his associates have developed and validated the Teaching Perspectives Inventory (TPI) which assesses the extent to which one holds these perspectives. Pratt offers a free, on-line version of the TPI which takes about 5 minutes to complete. A summary of your scores, an explanation of the perspectives and 10 steps to interpret your scores are immediately provided upon completion. It is important to note that these are all valid teaching perspectives, one is not inherently better than the others; the TPI simply provides a way for us to think about how we teach and what we emphasize. There are also numerous scholarly articles that have used the TPI. I will highlight results of one of them next week.
Happy First Friday,