“How do I make my classes interesting?”
“What can be the best strategies to keep the students engaged?”
“How can I make any of my topic interesting?”
These were the questions I had in my mind before I started taking classes for the Undergraduate students. Anybody I asked any of these questions to or wanted help from, replied back – Talk to Umes Sir, he will guide you. Umes Sir takes the most interesting class. One of the replies was – When I first started teaching, I attended Umes Sir’s class, participated in every activity and that’s how I developed my teaching skills.
That was it. I decided to attend Umes Sir’s class and learn my way through teaching the young adults. I started going for the classes. I sit with the students, team up with them and participate in every teaching process that happens in the class. I am basically studying the subject – BUSINESS COMMUNICATION.
Two days a week, I teach and two days I attend classes to learn skills for better instructional methods. While attending classes, I go with the student mindset to learn but at times, I think like a teacher. I juggle with the two sides of me as I want to think from both perspective most of the times. It happens unconsciously.
From day 1 of class, the learning has been umpteenth.
There are things that go in my mind when I sit in the class and be a part of the learning process.
- Wow! This is amazing. How did he get this idea?
I am always in awe the way Umes Sir prepares for a class, the kind of examples he uses or the way he makes any topic interesting. I keep thinking where he must have got this idea from which is so amazing. Did he design this on his own, does he have a resource book where one could refer to or is it available somewhere online? Obviously, it is years of experience and his passion for Instructional Design Methodologies that makes him push to develop and explore new ideas.
- How can I use this in my class? Can this be something that goes with my topic?
The teacher in me wants to quickly go back to the topics I will be teaching in the next class or coming week and wants to check if I could fit this activity somewhere. The subjects and the methodology required are different but I do give that one try to see if I could fit it somewhere in some way.
- Learning is a never-ending process. The only essential to effective learning is the willingness to learn.
As a student in the class who has been given a prompt to be solved, just like any other student – I also, have to think to find my way through it. I am confused, looking out to others for hints. I do make mistakes and take feedback to see if what I have understood or done is what was expected. For me what has really worked in this learning process is my enthusiasm to learn, ask questions and make mistakes, and constantly learn from students around me. My answers are not perfect and there are better ways to approach it. At times, I do feel that I should be knowing it or how can I not know it or why didn’t I think of it before but I take it as a stepping stone.
Attending Umes Sir’s class, at times getting the opportunity to assist him and most of the time taking continuous feedback from him has been a stepping stone for me. The discipline he maintains in class about starting the class on time, using a pen and paper to write and keeping away your phones totally during the session is some great tool to make learning effective and to maximize the outcome.
I go for every class or session with full enthusiasm so that I can learn and grow as a better student and teacher – both at the same time.
My heart is full of gratitude for the opportunity to learn and grow under his mentorship. He motivates me and makes me feel more comfortable about myself and delivering interesting classes.