My Authentic Teaching Self

I….have never thought this much about teaching. I strongly relate to “Finding My Teaching Voice.” I really enjoy giving scientific talks and giving lectures because I feel I am pretty good at communicating ideas in a way where my audience can learn what I’m saying, but it is typically a quick single show. Reflecting on these readings make me realize it is so entirely different to design a course, build a relationship with students and culture an environment for them to learn in. The readings also remind me quite a bit of what we discussed last week in terms of learning styles. There are no learning styles in the same way that there are no teaching styles, in a trick answer kind of way. We talked about some students may be more comfortable at learning a specific way, but they will not necessarily learn information any better through any teaching medium (though I need to read exactly how they measured learning in those students). Similarly, no matter how you choose to teach, the end goal being effective learning and communication, students will learn as well no matter what the teaching style is if you are authentic. What it seems to really take is to communicate your intentions. Additionally, the biggest take-away that I’m getting from these readings is how deliberate and mindful both the teacher and the student need to be. They both fill roles that people fall into naturally, but that can form bad, or at least inefficient habits. There is so much to consider when teaching, that having been student for the majority of my time, I haven’t thought about. Some of the things outlined in “The Authentic Teaching Self and Communication Skills” even elaborate the body as an instrument in a way that almost seemed goofy on first read. Regardless, I don’t have many personal teaching experiences that I feel I can apply this knowledge to yet, but I’m understanding that a teacher is extremely multidimensional, and has to be in order to successfully have their students learn.

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