What are your expectations for a workshop?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Doug_HSTeach_07, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. Doug_HSTeach_07

    Doug_HSTeach_07 Comrade

    Feb 4, 2007
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    Jan 26, 2009

    I had an all-day workshop on Saturday that I really enjoyed. It was a Geography workshop, which are far and few between, and that's why I was so excited to attend it (I traveled over 200 miles for it!)

    The day started off with a very subpar "keynote" address, which left much to be desired. Already I was getting frustrated- if my school spent the money for me to go, and I spent the time to travel to it- there's got to be better presenters than this. She was disinterested and did not engage any of the audience.

    However, the breakout sessions the rest of the day got my mind going in all different directions. It was like the workshop activated a part of my brain that had lay dormant for awhile, and all of the sudden the creative ideas leapt from my mind onto paper. It was pretty sweet.

    So I've created a philosophy of workshops (haha): to stimulate the creative part of the mind and build better projects and activities for my students, to learn new areas in history/social sciences and implement them, continue staying sharp. Notice I did NOT say coloring worksheets, which I have heard of teachers doing in workshops.

    So what are your expectations?
  3. Securis

    Securis Cohort

    Dec 16, 2007
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    Jan 27, 2009

    I expect there to be energy which I find sometimes lacking. I'm responsible for myself and providing energy, I know, but lectures kill me.

    I expect there to be substance which I sometimes find lacking due to repetition. Having the same workshop over and over again doesn't do it even if it is disguised by different names and presenters.

    I expect interaction. Most teachers are not afraid to get up and speak their minds but the larger the group, the less likely that will happen or it is altogether impossible. I like small group better because I find they are easier to make connections to the people with you. It is also easier to make connections to the tasks at hand and the subject.

    Every once in a while, a workshop will provoke in me what you describe but more often, I find it hard to make what is being offered relevant because everything seems so focused on testing and core content.

    My most recent workshop, I had a choice between several different things and I chose Cultural Diversity. The main objective was to get us to see outside of our own perspective so as to serve children of differing cultural backgrounds.
  4. fuzed_fizzion

    fuzed_fizzion Comrade

    Aug 18, 2008
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    Jan 27, 2009

    I expect the presentation to match the description in the conference booklet. I also expect some kind of interaction. I tend to stay away from anything that sounds like the presenter will just lecture the entire time. Finally, I expect the presenter to be prepared.

    The workshops I like the best is where it provokes some thoughts, ideas, creativity, etc. I also enjoy time to talk to the others around me and hear their ideas. I hate it when I have people around me that seem to think it is time to just sit and hangout with the people they came to the conference with.
  5. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

    Apr 14, 2006
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    Jan 27, 2009

    I expect a presenter who is prepared, enthusiastic, organized, and passionate about the topic. This year I have been to two different presentations/workshops. The first was a 2 on a scale of 1-5 (5 being best). The presenter spent all morning and part of the afternoon just telling stories, then had to rush through the real information-the techniques we could take back to class with us and use. He also skipped around a lot because his mind just meadered all over the place. To this day I can think of only one solid idea I can implement in my room.

    The second presentation I went to was very good. The presenter was all the things I wanted and more. Without knowing it, I was already doing at least half of the activities he outlined and showed up. The other half I am trying now. These were practical, hands-on, easy to implement ideas that work. I would go to another workshop with this presenter in a heartbeat. He knew what he was talking about, he was passionate that the techniques worked (and he had the numbers to prove it) and everything was quite realistic and practical.

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