Thursday, August 1, 2013

Boot camp, teaching, tai chi, oh my

Boot camp, our annual five week program of torture for incoming graduate students, is coming to an end: just a couple of days to go now: and we're not "teaching" now, per se, though the students are learning a lot.  We've given them a long final exam, to be presented at the board, so the final is essentially a two day long oral exam: there are seven students, so this gives lots of opportunity for each of them to present.
And even though we are not lecturing, there are a lot of teaching moments: particularly when the students are able to help each other through a knotty part of a problem.
I've been taking Tai Chi now for almost a year, twice a week, and have moved from the 11am beginners' class to the 10am advanced class.   The nice thing about this is that the instructor doesn't mind if I stick around for the second class, and has encouraged me to assist him with a little bit of the teaching: this is great, because as every teacher knows, the best way to learn something is to teach it.  Of course, there's always the danger that I'll teach it wrong, so I'm mainly sticking to the stuff I know pretty well.  There's a strong possibility that he's going to put on a couple of teaching workshops though, to help make sure we teach things the way he wants them taught.  I'm excited at the prospect!

Yours, seeing connections between teaching here, and teaching there,

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