This term I learned one important thing about myself as a teacher…I often am guilty of stereotyping
What I mean by this is that whenever I teach a class, I base my activities, behaviors, attitudes, and the like all too much on my preconceived notions of the group I am handling. I guess on one hand, there is some value to this practice, because it allows me to tap into the strengths and interests of the group. For example, when I handle business sections, I try to teach of social entrepreneurship and the like. So when I teach about ethics, I used the business setting as the base of my lecture. Makes sense, right?
However, there is also a danger to this. Because of preconceived notions, I may miss out on giving them opportunities that go beyond those ideas. Also, it leaves me defensive because I feel like I cannot connect with the students who like things I don’t understand or have a different wavelength. For example, I have no idea what cree xm-l LED’s are but I have students who talk about that and other electronics like it was nothing. As such, I cannot connect.
This term, I had to overcome that again. And because I did not hesitate to say I didn’t know what they meant, I was able to learn more and in the same way, I realized that they are also interested in other things outside of what I think they do. Lesson learned