Spaces for Teaching and Learning

Photo of my desk

This is my desk at work. Most people who know me would be amazed by how tidy it is!

Teaching Spaces

I’m not a teacher, but I do make use of online courses at work. Most of them are video courses and I work in a shared office, so I wear headphones for this.

Last year I graduated from an intensive classroom based training course that included a lot of practical work, with pair programming labs most days, two week-long group projects, a solo practical project, a lot of homework most nights and weekends, a portfolio of work to produce and online exams to pass at the end. I preferred the classroom as a teaching space, but learned a lot from doing the practical work, and also ended up with a lot of useful examples to look back on. Leaving the classroom to do practical work was not always convenient for seating arrangements but did offer a more private space for thinking and discussing problem solving ideas.

Two major challenges for me with the course arrangements were unpredictable finishing times, and an unpredictable amount of homework given each day. As a parent, and without any private space to work at home, I often either worked very late after my evening errands or stayed in the classroom long after classes had finished. But it did mean I got to chat with the cleaner a bit and hear a lot of his Power Ballads playlist.

In general I feel more comfortable with lectures as a teaching / learning space, due to being able to blend in. However, I do also think I learn a lot more by interacting with practical work, so maybe I need to get out of my comfort zone!

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