Is ‘lecture’ a 4-letter word?

I’m amazed at how my assumptions continue to be challenged by my daily practice.

I clearly assume project-based work to be a richer form of learning than lecture for all kinds of reason – students need to collaborate and therefore work on social skills, students are asked to be creative, there is more depth than breadth in the learning, all students are actively learning rather than passively listening and taking notes…I could go on but you can fill in the rest yourself, I’m sure.

Today I gave a lecture in Economics where I presented how we measure economic activity in Canada and different types of economies. I dread giving lectures. I assume that students will hate them, that they will zone out, that their time would better be used doing their own research. Today I encountered just the opposite. My students were actively engaged in their learning throughout my lecture. Really! They were calling me on everything, making sure I explained each concept until they got it, offering each other alternative explanations and examples to help in understanding. Granted, this was solely for the purpose of gathering knowledge, no analysis or synthesis or other creative activity was needed but I really believe that they are more prepared for such activities as a result of the class we had today.

Lecture is not the 4-letter word I have come to equate it with.

I like being thrown on my backside like that.

props to my kids…