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Inspirational Teaching. Wynne R. Waugaman, CRNA, Ph.D. Associate Professor and Interim Chair Department of Nursing University of Southern California. What is teaching?. The intentional act of creating conditions that can help students learn a great deal or keep them from learning at all!.

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inspirational teaching

Inspirational Teaching

Wynne R. Waugaman, CRNA, Ph.D.

Associate Professor and Interim Chair

Department of Nursing

University of Southern California

what is teaching

What is teaching?

The intentional act of creating conditions that can help students learn a great deal or keep them from learning at all!

teacher s roles


















Teacher’s Roles
what inspired you to become a teacher
What inspired you to become a teacher?
  • I wanted to emulate a mentor/teacher whom I admired!
  • I could do a better job than those who taught me!
  • Other reasons????
grad student teaching interest
Grad Student Teaching Interest
  • Teaching is not only for the student; the teacher benefits from the student’s questions and perspectives.
  • Teaching helps to propagate the field!
grad student teaching interest1
Grad Student Teaching Interest
  • I will never forget how tough it is to be a student and will carry these memories into my teaching
  • The best way to know something is to be able to teach it.
  • Teaching motivates one to keep updated.
grad student teaching interest2
Grad Student Teaching Interest
  • Being a student has made me realize once again how much fun and how stimulating learning can be.
  • I would like to give back to the profession.
grad student teaching interest3
Grad Student Teaching Interest
  • Teaching helps to carry on the tradition of the educational process I experienced here at USC.
the power of mentors
The Power of Mentors
  • To awaken a truth within us.
  • Mentoring is a mutuality between the “right” student and the “right” teacher.

“Mentors and apprentices are partners in an ancient human dance, and one of teaching’s great rewards is the daily chance it gives us to get back on the dance floor.”P.J. Palmer (1998). The courage to teach, p. 24.

sources of the tangles of teaching
Sources of the Tangles of Teaching
  • The subjects comprising nursing practice are as large and complex as life, so our knowledge of them is always flawed and partial.
  • The students we teach are larger than life and even more complex requiring a pedagogical style fusing Freud and King Solomon.
sources of the tangles of teaching1
Sources of the Tangles of Teaching
  • We teach who we are!
    • For better or worse, teaching emerges from our inner self.
    • Teaching holds a mirror to the soul!
    • Knowing oneself is as crucial to good teaching as knowing our students and our subject matter.
teaching can be a fearful enterprise
Teaching can be a fearful enterprise!
  • Fear of students, fear of faculty colleagues, and fear of administrators.
  • Academe offers many ways to protect ourselves from the live encounter (a sequence of fears which begins in the fear of diversity).
    • Faculty can hide behind their podiums, their credentials, their power, and their academic specialties!
culture of disconnection
Culture of Disconnection
  • Undermines teaching and makes learning be driven partly by fear.
  • Our Western commitment to think in polarities is a thought form that elevates disconnection into an intellectual virtue.
the student from hell

The Student from Hell!

Disconnection occurs when the student’s fear shuts down the capacity for connectedness.

Describe a student who fits this description!

broken paradoxes of education
Broken Paradoxes of Education
  • We separate theory from practice. Result: theories that have little to do with life and practice that is uninformed by understanding.
  • We separate teaching from learning. Result: teachers who talk but do not listen and students who listen but do not talk.

Good teaching cannot be reduced to technique; good teaching comes from the identity and integrity of the teacher.P.J. Palmer (1998). The courage to teach, p. 10.

the good news
The Good News
  • We no longer need suffer the boredom felt when teaching is approached as a question of “how to do it.”
  • We no longer have to suffer the pain of having our particular teaching style forced into the current teaching method du jour (e.g. Web courses, Power Point Presentations, etc.)
the bad news
The Bad News
  • If we want to grow as teachers, we must risk doing something alien to the academic culture: we must talk to each other about our “self”, our “identity,” our “inner lives.”
  • We must experiment, stay open to new ideas rather than protect ourselves behind the old and familiar.
teaching qualities valued
Teaching Qualities Valued
  • Openness and genuine caring for all.
  • Unequivocal fairness.
  • One who is not afraid to say when they do not know the answer.
  • Organized and prepared.
  • Subject expert.
teaching qualities valued1
Teaching Qualities Valued
  • Consistency and patience.
  • The ability to trust the student and give up control.
  • Approachability.
  • Open to discussion.
  • Sense of humor.
teaching qualities valued2
Teaching Qualities Valued
  • Enthusiasm and joy for the subject matter.
  • Take an extremely difficult concept and simplify it with examples, drawings, etc.
  • Always questioning authority should not intimidate.
teaching qualities valued3
Teaching Qualities Valued
  • Willing to teach clinically without giving the student the sense of burden of “having a student.”
  • Faculty are only as good as the “weakest link.” Teach us to be the best.
characteristics of good teachers
Characteristics of Good Teachers
  • A strong sense of personal identity infuses their work.
    • Encouragement
    • Enthusiasm
    • Confidence
    • Good listener
    • Sharing personal experiences, especially clinical examples
incorporating real life experiences into academic learning
Incorporating “real-life” experiences into academic learning
  • Clinical practicum experiences
  • Professional/organizational experiences
  • Community experiences
  • Others??
characteristics of good teachers1
Characteristics of Good Teachers
  • Possess a capacity for connectedness: they weave a complex web of connections among themselves, their subject, and their students enabling the students to weave their own fabric from what they’ve received.
  • Keep their hearts open to their students even in difficult times.
teaching that inspires motivates
Teaching that Inspires/Motivates
  • Positive reinforcement builds confidence.
  • The enthusiasm of the instructor and the applicability of information.
teaching that inspires motivates1
Teaching that Inspires/Motivates
  • Sharing their own personal experiences during their time as a RN or student which reveals humanism.
  • Seeing our alumni as teachers and knowing they are still thirsting for professional knowledge.
teaching that inspires motivates2
Teaching that Inspires/Motivates
  • When the clinical instructor demands student responsibility and/or accountability in the clinical setting.
  • Involving the class in discussion and problem solving
sex up your teaching
“Sex up” Your Teaching
  • Encourage creativity
  • Encourage the search for more than one right answer
  • Ask questions that solicit plural answers
  • Encourage dialogue
  • Ask “what if” questions
  • Get in touch with “the art of nursing”
artist vs judge

Artist vs. Judge

Encourage students to have their “artist” do its job before bringing in their “judge.”

sex up your teaching1
“Sex up” Your Teaching
  • Encourage creativity
  • Encourage the search for more than one right answer
  • Ask questions that solicit plural answers
  • Encourage dialogue
  • Ask “what if” questions
  • Get in touch with “the art of nursing”

“If you give students conflicting interpretations, they get to use their big, bright brains…Have faith in the students’ ability to think…”

W. Bateman, (1990), Open to question: The art of teaching and learning by inquiry, p.10.

sex up your teaching2
“Sex up” Your Teaching
  • Encourage creativity
  • Encouragethesearchformorethanonerightanswer
  • Ask questions that solicit plural answers
  • Encourage dialogue
  • Ask “what if” questions
  • Get in touch with “the art of nursing”

Vignettes: Clinical or didactic experiences where a teacher had a significant impact upon you as the student.They can be negative or positive.

Inspirational teaching requires the teacher to bring his/her gifts to the classroom or clinical setting!
a teacher s gifts
A Teacher’s Gifts
  • A capacity to combine structure with flexibility in both planning and leading each class or clinical experience.
  • A thorough knowledge of the material and a commitment to facilitating mastery among students.
a teacher s gifts1
A Teacher’s Gifts
  • Make curricular decisions that are guided by the goal of student mastery and achievement rather than an effort to cover the content.
  • A desire to help students build a bridge between the academic text and their own lives by providing a strategic approach.
a teacher s gifts2
A Teacher’s Gifts
  • Set the tone which explicitly and self-consciously stresses values of unanxious expectation (“I won’t threaten you but I expect much of you.”), of trust (unless abused), and of decency (the values of fairness, generosity and tolerance).
a teacher s gifts3
A Teacher’s Gifts
  • An ability to personalize teaching and learning to the maximum it is feasible.
  • A respect for my students’ stories that is no more or less than my respect for the scholarly readings I assign them.
a teacher s gifts4
A Teacher’s Gifts
  • An aptitude for asking good questions and listening carefully to my students’ responses, not only to what they say, but also to what they leave unsaid.
  • An ability to see my students’ lives more clearly than they see themselves, a capacity to help them look beyond the surface and see themselves more deeply.
a teacher s gifts5
A Teacher’s Gifts
  • The ability to coach to provoke student self-learning.
  • A willingness to take risks, especially the risk of inviting open dialogue, though where it may take us is unknown.
giving back to the profession
Giving Back to the Profession
  • Try to be the kind of teacher who is knowledgeable, enthusiastic, confident, prepared, and collegial.
  • Serving as a motivated clinical preceptor or instructor.
giving back to the profession1
Giving Back to the Profession
  • Volunteer my services in the clinical or didactic area, wherever I am needed.
  • Attempting to be the best educator and thus leave a lasting impression on the students.
giving back to the profession2
Giving Back to the Profession
  • Carry on the tradition of advanced students giving topical reviews on the weekends, offer a workshop to help better prepare students for clinical.
  • Be a professional role model.
giving back to the profession3
Giving Back to the Profession
  • Be actively involved in the professional organization to ensure the future is bright for my peers and successors.
  • Sponsor students to professional events.
  • Share knowledge with others.

“One who learns in order to teach will be granted the opportunity both to learn and teach. One who learns in order to do will be granted not only the opportunity to learn and teach, but also the opportunity to do and be fulfilled.”Rabbi Ishmael, Pirke Avot, IV:6