This week, and I would say the undercurrent of all weeks is about collaboration. I liked how in two of the readings this week they defined the different levels of collaboration. I think until this point I hadn’t really stopped to think about what this buzzword really means. It isn’t just about using library space, and it isn’t just about using the library media specialist as an instructor. Rather, it is suppose to be about inclusion of both teacher, and teacher-librarian when creating lessons. It is about focusing on each others strengths to help create a dynamite learning experience for students.
I think collaboration/co-teaching also opens up the possibility of trying new things, or taking risks. Especially once you have a fairly stable working relationship, I think it would help you lean on each other at various parts when you are trying a new technique. The readings didn’t discuss this much, but it is something I’m increasingly becoming interested in. We are starting to see a trend to have students collaborate together, and learn from failures. So, how do we shape environments where we can show how to learn from failures? Can collaborative teaching, and taking risks, help our students understand? Or is the potential of them not gaining any knowledge because of an error on the instructors part too big of a risk?
These readings made me think about a class I took during undergrad on feminist theory that was co-taught. We had an English professor and a Political Science professor, both would be there for class. Sometimes they would switch off during class, or sometimes one would lead the class discussion for that day, while the other might chime in with clarifying questions to either students or the other professor. At first it was something to get use to. But within a couple of class sessions, I really became to enjoy it. They pulled on each others’ strengths, and I feel that I not only learned a wide array of materials, but also deep meanings. I would love to be able to be apart of something like this.
But how to do it? The question on everyone’s mind! I think we have to eventually just go for it. Make your presence known, and let people know what you do, can do, like to do, and want to do. I think there is a part of just building friendships.
I enjoyed the Motown analogy of how collaboration works. It’s had me singing “One Fine Day” by the Chiffons for a good two days now.