Archive for the ‘Teaching’ Category

  • Session notes for the Classrooms and Learning Spaces Discussion


    Add your own notes or just check out the session here.

  • Gaming in the Classroom


    I’m an enormous fan of games of all types–word, board, computer, sport, team-building, card, theater–but finding inventive ways to integrate them into the (history) classroom is challenging.

    Background: I’m thinking specifically of the work of Jane McGonigal as in her work Reality is Broken and in this TED talk. While this is very well trodden ground at the primary school level, it feels underused still in higher education. But the educational possibilities of creating or playing games are easy to see:

    • My friend Emmanuel Schanzer teaches math by having students code computer games through his program, Bootstrap.
    • A colleague who teaches government at the local high school uses Diplomacy with his advanced students to demonstrate the give and take of international diplomacy.
    • History’s lessons were the inspiration for recent kickstarters on election rigging (Tammany Hall) and the Salem witch craft trials (Salem).
    • AAA video game releases use extensive historical elements to add depth to the gaming experience as in the Assassin’s Creed Series.

    Let’s have a session where we brainstorm ways to take advantage of gaming’s possibilities for learning.

    We can do this as a TALK session (discuss how, why, and when to introduce gaming and brainstorm games that would be appropriate for our teaching areas), a PLAY session (where myself and others can demonstrate simple games that can be extrapolated for specific pedagogical lessons), or a MAKE session (if folks have ideas about specific things they’d like to turn into games).

  • Classrooms and Learning Spaces for the Future


    Session notes are here.

    I’m interested in talking about classroom and class design for the future:

    What should the physical space for learning include looking forward?  What are our minimum expectations?  Does the physical classroom matter any more?  [MOOCs, online and blended/hybrid classes raise complicated questions about what parts of classrooms and the things we do in them (like lecture) matter, which don’t matter, and which need to change as new virtual or physical spaces for teaching emerge.] For how long and in what ways will/should the classroom change?

    I should say that I’ve been mulling this notion of classroom space for a while (see my post here for one exploration of these ideas) as I’ve been involved in two different major building/renovation projects on my campus, but this could well be something that goes beyond classrooms to something like “learning spaces of the future” that would combine the physical and intellectual space that classrooms, libraries, archives, and museums occupy now and in the years to come.

    Anyone else interested in talking about learning spaces?

    Jeff McClurken

  • Digital Humanities Course Design


    I am in the early stages of designing an undergraduate honors tutorial in digital humanities and a graduate level, interdisciplinary research course with a focus on digital tools (both courses will be offered in Fall 2013).  I would like to propose a conversation about constructing undergraduate and a graduate level introductory digital humanities courses. What class projects work for ug/gr students? What texts resonate with students? How do you engage non-majors in humanities scholarship? Best practices? Realistic learning objectives?


    Katherine O’Flaherty



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