Saturday, September 06, 2008

I hate Lecture

Last week I started my physics class with Relativity in Week One (pdf). A short unit by E.R. Huggins. I really like this unit, but it is totally contrary to how I usually teach as I had to lecture the whole week. This year I have four sections of Physics, in the past I've only had three. That extra section makes a big difference. My experience from last week reinforces my plans to not lecture in class this year.

So, this year I will be lecturing on video and students will be able to watch on their own time. This will leave more time in school for working problems. Basically, those tasks that may have been homework in the past will now be class work. So, when a student gets stuck they can ask me for help rather than just copying off a classmate. In addition, this may allow me to sneak in a few more labs.

The videos can be streamed from the web from either or the They can also be downloaded via iTunes and played on home computers or portable media players. If needed, I will burn a small number of DVDs of my videos for students who might not have a computer at home.

So far I've been using TipCam to do screen captures and as needed I also use a small Wacom tablet I bought on ebay to write on the screen. I'll be listing all the videos on my FLOSScience site as I create them. Feel free to use them with your own classes or just use them as a source of inspiration.

In an effort to keep my life easy, my goal is to do my videos in one take. Basically, this means they will likely be a little rough at times. Below is the first part of my lecture from chapter 2 of our text book (modeling one dimensional uniform motion).


Anonymous said...

This is such a cool way of doing things. I can remember countless times in college being bored out of my mind listening to lectures in a movie theater style classroom. How dull. I always thought that with so many minds in one class room we could be doing something more productive and stimulating. I like the idea of listening to the lecture on podcast while your doing something else. For me this would be the ideal way to hear a lecture, and I think I would be more engaged.

Carmen Fernandez said...

I think you make a good point, but being I student I think that a decently timed lecture isn't bad because watching a lecture at home or in a library doesn't capture the sam essents of a classroom. On the other hand, there is that same obstacle of being "in time" and pay attention in the calss setting. Mainly what I am trying to say that a mixture of lecture and hands-on work is helpful in hte learning environment.