Beyond Bean Counting: A New Laboratory to Teach the Concepts of Microevolution

by Sonja Schwartz, Environmental Science, Policy, and Management
My goal for this laboratory was to engage students of all learning styles by using a combination of passive and active, visual and auditory, and conceptual and applied activities. By reinforcing the material this way, I wanted to get beyond endless bean counting to more effectively teach my students key concepts of evolution.

Multi-Sensory Windows into Ancient Near Eastern Archaeology

by Stephanie Langin-Hooper, Near Eastern Studies
One of the most involved and successful projects that I designed was a miniature replica of underwater shipwreck excavations. Using large turkey roasting pans, water, sand, and an assortment of miniature objects, I recreated three underwater shipwreck excavation sites…The students became the archaeologists and were divided up into excavation teams…Through a multi-sensory engagement, this project successfully opened the eyes of my students to the dynamic process of archaeological excavation.

Music and Multi Media: Staging Stravinsky’s ‘The Rite of Spring’

by Anna Nisnevich, Music
An easy analogy between music and word, music and image, and music and gesture…often proves deceptive…Ever-tempted to “translate” music into a discernible language, the students easily get under the spell of the familiar and end up telling stories and drawing mental pictures, instead of trying to address the subtler ways in which music interacts with other media.

Kinesthesis in Science: Where Red Rover Meets Quantum Mechanics

by Steve Dawson, Astronomy
Any physical problem, as well as all of the associated formalism, can be rendered not only intelligible but even pleasurable if the student first achieves a gut sense of the physical situation. Put plainly, all of the math in any science class makes sense if the student first has an intuitive mental picture of exactly what is going on.

Teaching to Different Modes of Learning

by Alexander Kauffman, Integrative Biology
As the semester progressed, a larger and more general issue became clear to me: different students learn in different ways. This idea applies not just to students with learning disabilities, but to all students…Presenting the same information in different ways…allows for better teaching…[and] allows students with diverse learning abilities to access and understand what you are trying to teach.