Monday, September 14, 2015

Achievements for Teachers

One of the rooms I teach in just received a brand new whiteboard for the front of the room. It used to be that the front was a blackboard, and the sides and back were whiteboards. Now, it's whiteboards all around, which is great... except for one thing. The markers that were left in the room were nauseating: take off the cap, and the whole room would get light-headed. Have students at each board, and it was truly toxic.

I worked with the friendly staff of my department and got permission to throw away all those markers and replace them with nice low-odor markers. I unceremoniously dumped the old ones in the bin at the beginning of class, prompting one of the students to claim that there should be achievements for teachers. I asked why, and he said, "For the markers!" I asked if these achievements would be tied into students' teaching evaluation responses, and he immediately recognized that they would need to be validated by some trusted third party.

I love this idea! Maybe I just got the Budget Renovation Achievement for "Using university resources to make a learning space better without breaking the bank." Could we give achievements that would incentivize other positive teaching activities: learning students' names, incorporating active learning, giving meaningful feedback on assignments? Markers may be just the beginning...

No comments:

Post a Comment