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Thursday, March 03, 2005

Where Have We Heard This Before?

It's not my habit to make two posts in one night, but I just read this and couldn't pass up the opportunity. The site is called Common Errors in College Math and I was immediately attracted to the link Student Shyness, which reads like this:
a common error is that of not asking questions.

When your teacher says something that you don't understand, don't be shy about asking; that's why you're in class! If you've been listening but not understanding, then your question is not a "stupid question." Moreover, you probably aren't alone in your lack of understanding -- there are probably a dozen other students in your classroom who are confused about precisely the same point, and are even more shy and inarticulate than you. Think of yourself as their spokesperson; you'll be doing them all a favor if you ask your question. You'll also be doing your teacher a favor -- your teacher doesn't always know which points have been explained clearly enough and which points have not; your questions provide the feedback that your teacher needs.

If you think your teacher may have made a mistake on the chalkboard, you'd be doing the whole class a favor by asking about it. (To save face, just in case the error is your own, formulate it as a question rather than a statement. For instance, instead of saying "that 5 should be a 7", you can ask "should that 5 be a 7?")

And try to ask your question as soon as possible after it comes up. Don't wait until the very end of the example, or until the end of class. As a teacher, I hate it when class has ended and students are leaving the room and some student comes up to me and says "shouldn't that 5 have been a 7?" Then I say "Yes, you're right, but I wish you had asked about it out sooner. Now all your classmates have an error in the notes that they took in class, and they may have trouble deciphering their notes later."

Sound familiar? ;-)


At 3/04/2005 9:36 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, Mr K. We have heard that a million times before. :(. To be honest with you.. I am starting to get hooked to ask questions. I think it is onky a matter of being close to the teacher to fight the student shyness. BTW. I am happy about my performance in your class. I think im starting to do well.. Some things were clearer in my mind than before and I can interact with my classmates somehow.Here's another thing about students not asking questions.Should have been we are in your first period.. (im just assuming, it is just based from my experience) maybe we could ask more questions to you because we're fresh physically and mentally. Maybe some students were pretty tired already to participate in their 3rd and 4th period class. Maybe some of them were present physically but mentally absent. I have been like that many times before (^_^)

At 3/06/2005 10:09 p.m., Blogger calvinw. said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 3/07/2005 10:39 p.m., Blogger calvinw. said...

REEDITED -- i am for one, always exhausted in 4th, 5th period. as you should know from the previous semester.. some times im awake and some times im not. like gherard said, we may be physically there, but not mentally. i must say thou, when i am paying attenti0n, i may understand for the moment. i m going to add on to this as i am sane right now.. hopefully it makes sense? if not, sorry. precal is getting faster and faster, me being 1/2 concious wont do any good. im starting to think i've lost my place in precal. im gunna try all out for this up coming test, if i dont do good, there always next year?


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