Wednesday, January 8, 2014

"Nothing Magical"

One lesson I learned while working with college students is to use the phrase "Nothing Magical" when teaching them academic skills that they did not master in high school.  For example, the structure of a well-constructed and well-written paper can fit into a formula and a pattern.  As we review the requirements of the assignment, we develop an outline according to a formula and then brainstorm and discuss the content of each segment of the outline.  This demystifies the process and helps them to believe it is something they can actually do!  Being afraid because you never learned something is far different from thinking you can't learn.

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