The Chalkboard Life

David Thomson
A weekly newsletter about preserving the heart of teaching in a tech-saturated world.
Created 01 Jan 2021
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  • A Whimsical Jackass
    02 Oct 2021 • 2 min read • 4 0
    Several years ago I read a fairly obscure but very thoughtful book about teaching by the novelist and poet Jesse Ball. The book is called Notes On My Dunce Cap, and is a slim volume and thus a quick r...
  • The Metaverse
    25 Sep 2021 • 2 min read • 3 1
    The term “Metaverse,” is a portmanteau word, containing “Meta” (meaning beyond) and “verse” (shortened from universe). It refers to a future form of the Internet, where we won’t just be observing cont...
  • Back to Front
    18 Sep 2021 • 5 min read • 3 0
    Good online course pedagogy requires rethinking and redesigning each course from back to front.1 Yes, back first. Because it is time to articulate the measurable learning outcomes for each course that...
  • Pop the Balloon
    11 Sep 2021 • 4 min read • 3 2
    Leon Botstein is the President of Bard College. You probably knew that already, because he has been President of Bard College since 1975. That’s 46 years for the math challenged. He has done extraordi...
  • Teaching with Masks
    04 Sep 2021 • 3 min read • 3 1
    Around the country teachers have returned to the classroom or are preparing to do so. Inexplicably, in some places, parents have protested mask wearing in school. It seems such a simple thing to do, s...
  • Teaching as an Art Form, Part II
    28 Aug 2021 • 4 min read • 2 0
    Last week I introduced you to a book about teaching that I admire, written by long-time college teachers James Banner and Harold Cannon. They outline nine critical elements of teaching, and I shared s...
  • Teaching as an Art Form, Part I
    21 Aug 2021 • 3 min read • 4 0
    Over 20 years ago, two college teachers wrote a book about teaching entitled The Elements of Teaching.1 In the book, Professors James Banner and Harold Cannon wrote simply and passionately about what ...
  • Philosophy of Teaching
    14 Aug 2021 • 3 min read • 3 1
    If you have been teaching for any length of time, you have been to a teaching conference. If you have been to a teaching conference, you have probably attended a session about how to write your “Philo...
  • The New School Year
    07 Aug 2021 • 3 min read • 4 2
    In most parts of the world, teachers are preparing to return to the classroom. Some of us will be masked, and many required to be vaccinated. So it will be different in some ways, but in most other wa...
  • On Vacation
    03 Jul 2021 • < 1 min read
    The Chalkboard Life is going to take it’s own advice this month, and take time off in July. The weekly newsletter will reappear on August 7th. In the meantime, let me know if you would like to guest p...
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