Thursday, May 13, 2010

Learning and Teaching, chapter XIII, continued

In the chapter, 'Getting and Holding Attention', Sheridan and White emphasize approaches that are familiar to readers of Gregory, and to classical teachers in general. The primary responsibility for getting and keeping the attention of students rests with the teacher. Of course, the student has the duty to attend, but the teacher must make the lesson so interesting that the students simply will not be able to help themselves--they will attend because the lesson in interesting, not because they are being compelled, by the teacher or by duty,to do so.

In the section 'Good Teaching' they make the following observations:

"...the question of getting and holding the attention is chiefly a question of good teaching. Good teaching means, among other things: A lesson adapted to the capacities, interests, and needs of the pupils...genuine interest and earnestness on the part of the teacher; alertness and ability to use unexpected opportunities.."

"Demanding attention is a poor way of securing it...The ideal is to teach in such a way that the interest of the pupil is aroused, and thus his attention is gripped and held."


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