Sunday, October 2, 2011

Chapter 5--They Snooze, You Lose_Synopsis

Chapter 5

Making Connections

This chapter makes a case for the necessity to teach concretes as a

foundation for more abstract. According to the author, Dr. Burmark, it is

extremely important for the presenter to establish the context for the rest

rest of the presentation, so that the audience has an idea of what to expect.

The chapter then proceeds into underlining the importance of building on your

audience's prior knowledge.The author then recommends exercises like

"what do these clouds look like" when time is not as limited, or humor with

recall and provides examples to illustrate. She cites John Medina stating

that the brain wants to know "where have I seen this before?" Dr. Burmark

continues by making an interesting remark stating that the negative word

"prejudice" shouldn't be negative all of the time; stating that it is only through

prejudging that we are able to evaluate into predetermined categories the

enormous amount of information that our senses bring to us. Dr. Burmark

follows by introducing the concept of 10:2 in which after 10 minutes of

class or presentation, the presenter allows for 2 minutes of peer

discussion what has just been learned. This she states is consistent with

John Medina's findings that the brain tune out after 10 continuous

minutes of listening. She highly recommend doing this for both

presenters and educators alike. The chapter follows with a case

supporting knowing and calling each student with by his first name. This

she states fosters a climate of belonging. She uses this topic to present

the web-based tool Wordle which arranges words into attractive posters

out of plain lists. The chapter continues by stating the importance of

proximity with your audience; getting them close and avoiding lecterns

that serve as symbols of separation. Dr. Burmark warns about dialectical

problems that your presentations can bring, so she recommends to always

consider that and try to connect to your audience by preparing for such issues.

She finishes the chapter by highlighting the importance of humor to connect.

Some of it can be planned, she states, but a lot of it is circumstantial.

This chapter highlights what every educator should know. That is build

on previous knowledge, make your environment an inviting one by making

your students feel they belong there, eliminate barriers that separate your

from your audience, and use humor when appropriate. I found the 10:2 both

new and interesting. It makes sense that it should work but it needs to be

implemented consistently.

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