Week Three: Co-teaching

For week three, I co-taught for the first time. I was pretty nervous, though not nearly as nervous as I thought I would be. The night before, I observed Karlie teaching a different section, and we met afterwards to discuss our lesson plan. We decided that I would start by explaining Boolean operators and then do a Scout tutorial using the section theme. I tend to get extremely nervous the first time I do something, but it went much better than I anticipated. The things I’ll fix for next time are pretty minor overall. I want to make sure I don’t talk too quickly or slowly. When explaining Scout, I’d like to explain things in a slightly different order next time, one that I feel makes more sense. I think that the biggest achievement of this week was diving into teaching, and gaining confidence. Flashing back to week one, Sara’s advice to focus on the concept (searching/narrowing) rather than the tool (Scout) was spot-on. I really feel that using that approach is what eliminated a lot of nerves.

Week Two: Observing

For week two, I had the opportunity to observe three different instructors as they taught EN102/103 session ones. Immediately, I made the decision that I would attend each and every session I could, even as I get well into co-teaching and solo teaching myself. I expected that I would be more nervous, seeing what I would soon be facing myself, but I actually felt much better after each session I observed. Two major things stood out to me. Firstly, I was impressed with how much innovation and individuality can be added into each session. Each of the three instructors had very different approaches, exercises and style, but the students all came out of the sessions understanding the same concepts. Secondly, it was a major relief to see that the anxieties of the instructor weren’t noticeable to me, much less to the EN102/103 students. When they would say to me afterwards “I didn’t love this part”, “I would switch it to this thing”, etc., I was surprised, because the class had been seamless from my perspective.

Week One: Preparing a Demo

For our first meeting, we each had to prepare a 5 minute demo on how to search Scout. Predictably, being the first week, things did not go nearly as smoothly as I would have preferred. However, it ended up being extremely educational because I learned a lot of important tips that will serve me as an instructional librarian. First of all, my biggest problem was that I had prepared an exact search pattern. When the results didn’t pull up exactly how I anticipated, I panicked. As Sara pointed out to me though, it was a very important lesson in making sure that I understand the concepts and am flexible instead of sticking so closely to a particular plan. Plans often fall apart, especially plans depending on an ever-changing resource like Scout. The other lesson I learned was a bit more abstract. I had been so focused on demoing a tutorial for Scout that I kept my vision narrow. In reality, I should have had the focus be on searching as a concept with Scout as the tool.