A few months back, I wrote a post about changes I’ve made in my teaching practice to be more empathetic and compassionate to my students. I was pleased and surprised by how well-received these thoughts were by other educators. Now that the semester is over, I’ve had some time to reflect on how these changes worked out in the classroom.
Okay. That might be an overly optimistic goal, but I’m going to give it a shot.
I’m bad with names. Depending on how much sleep I’ve gotten, I periodically call one of my children by the other’s name. Last semester I had 225 students between two classes. These were new classes for me, so I was mostly concerned with keeping the ship afloat. I knew there was no chance I would learn 225 names, so I made no concerted effort. (I picked up a few names, but only students I had frequent interaction with).
Frankly, it was a bit embarrassing. I could recognize many of my students, but I didn’t know their names. I recently attended UBC’s graduation. I recognized many students (and they recognized me), but few names came to mind.
I need to do better.