Category Archives: Talking About Teaching

Can Peer Support Improve Your Pedagogy?

A Talking About Teaching Review (Event took place January 23rd, 2015)
written by Sheila McManus

The participants at the January Talking about Teaching event (“Can Peer Support Improve Your Pedagogy?”) were a perfect microcosm of the existing peer support community: few in number but highly diverse and passionate believers in peer support as one strategy for helping teachers teach better.  Six graduate students and six instructors from a wide variety of disciplines joined five facilitators in a “world café”-style discussion.  There were five different tables, each with their own topic and facilitator: traditional one-on-one mentoring (Wayne Lippa, facilitator); the Instructional Skills Workshop (Leanne Elias); communities of practice (Lisa Doolittle); [He]art of Teaching (Harold Jansen), and small group models like triads and squares (Sheila McManus).  Participants had to choose three of the five topics to discuss, and there was time at the end for all the participants and facilitators to have a final conversation about the benefits and challenges of the different models.  Two of the peer support models already exist here at U of L (more information about the ISW and [He]art of Teaching can be found at the Teaching Centre’s website) and the other three exist in many different informal contexts.  Over the course of the two hours a strong consensus emerged that the different models each have different benefits and challenges; they can serve different needs depending on what kind of support the instructor wants, and whether the instructor is new or very experienced.  Not surprisingly, field-specific mentoring was a higher priority for many of the grad students than any of the multi-disciplinary models, while the experienced instructors in the room were more interested in hearing about how they could learn from teachers in other disciplines.  There was little agreement, however, about who should create and maintain the other options; participants noted that in some cases it might work best for the Teaching Centre to coordinate them, but others suggested that more peer support needs to be done by and within specific departments and faculties.

Visual Notes – Reflections on Teaching in a SCALE-UP Room – Nov. 24, 2014

Our last Talking About Teaching dealt with teaching in a SCALE-UP room. If you didn’t have a chance to join us for that session, then please check out the visual notes below. They are basically a graphically enhanced version of notes from the event.

Dan Furgason

Click here to view the visual notes.

Michael Stingl

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Luz Ospina

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“Teaching From Experience” Talking About Teaching Visual Notes

On January 31st the Teaching Centre held a Talking About Teaching event called “Teaching from Experience.” It featured Adam Mason, Robbin Derry and Dan Johnson, all of whom are valued teachers here at the University of Lethbridge. They shared a wealth of information with us, and it was a great session.

But if you were unable to attend, it is okay, because we took notes. The notes below are visual notes and are interpretations of the presentation in visual form.


Robbin Derry Robbin is speaking about here experiences as a chef and how they have influenced her teaching.

Click here to view the PDF in full.

Dan Johnson
We were lucky enough to hear all about Dan Johnson’s international travel and experience. This guy sure has done a lot of interesting things.

Click here for the full PDF

Adam Mason
Adam shared with the experience of drum line and drum core, and how the constant strive for greater achievement in these programs has made him the teacher he is today.

Click here to see the full PDF

Horror Stories from the Classroom Visual Notes

If you missed the Talking About Teaching on October 25th, in which four of our wonderful instructors shared their horror stories, you are in luck because we have visual notes. Click on the images below to check them out.

Assignment Sabotage
Jennifer Mather



Take the Sick Day
Robin Bright



The Presentation that Opened Eyes
Andrea Glover



Classroom Uprising
Maureen Hawkins


Visual Review of Talking About Teaching – Disrupting Your Regular Teaching Program

If you were unable to make it to the last Talking About Teaching – Disrupting Your Regular Teaching Program it is okay because we took notes.

Below are visual notes that represent each presenters presentation. Click on each thumbnail to download a PDF of the visual notes.

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