AMATYC 1: How to Reach Students Who Believe They Will Fail


The iPad experiment is a failure. It is Hilton’s fault. After charging $169 per night for a room they want more for wireless. This is while I will not use Hilton Hotels on non-business travel. This is not customer friendly. I will upload all of these at the end. (EDIT: The lobby coffee shop has free internet).

Jim Sheff was the presenter at the first session. I took a picture of his business card if any HFCC folks want to know more about how to contact him. He showed that he personally has a low withdrawal rate and a high pass rate. Then he accidentally shut down his computer and Windows insisted on updating. So, I don’t know how his students do in the next course.

He showed how to use positive and negative chips and a bowl of soup metaphor to explain why subtracting a negative is the same as adding a positive. This is similar to the hot air balloon metaphor we used at HFCC several years ago.

Windows is done and so we learned that his students do, in fact, do well in their next course.

We are 20 minutes in and we have not discussed why his rates are higher. We had a decidedly uninteresting side track wherein one teacher whined about how hard it was to get similar data at her College. She wants it to help her on a job search. I have solved the mystery of why her data requests do not get priority.

He shows pictures of his family as an introduction the first day. He talks about his personal interests. He likes Escher. He showed a slide show of Escher prints.

He talks abut the syllabus on the first day.

He likes to listen to Steppenwolf and other bands. I must admit this is the first time I heard Metallica at AMATYC. He played End of the Line so as a Tigers fan I half expected Valverde to enter the room and spit.

We are now 30 minutes into the session. He is answering questions over a grunge band I cannot identify. We are on syllabus policies.

One cool idea his college, Spoon River College, has is a theme for the year. Areas tie into it as well as they can. I think this idea, though hard to implement will be the only great takeaway from this session.

Sheff has lol on his first day slides.

Sheff has an ice breaker activity on the first day.

15 minutes left and we have moved to the second day of class. The students are oriented to classroom software. It looks like Hawkes.

I think that the personal interaction Sheff uses will be hard to replicate at a college that shares part-time faculty with other courses.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s