Monday, December 7, 2009

A new challenge...

Tonight I successfully taught my first basic computer class for adults (at least, I think I was successful :-)) Thanks to some very helpful stimulus funding, we have been able to implement a so-called "Parent University" at our school, which enables us to offer free courses to interested parents and community members. We originally had offered classes in parenting, infant care, English, computers, consumer math, and algebra, but had such great demand that we are currently basically offering several sections of English and computers. So tonight, another teacher and I divided up the adults and took about 20 each.

After talking with kids all day, it's a bit unnerving to be teaching adults. I wrote my name on the board, and was shocked to realize that people were taking notes! Without being asked! :-) The other added "bonus" to the class (other than that most have never touched a computer) is that the vast majority of the students don't speak English (or at least not fluently). Hence, there was a lot of me holding up components and going, "KEYBOARD. Say it with me-"keyboard."" So, that added an extra challenge. In reality though, a truly basic computer class like this one is 50% teaching people a different language anyway. So today, our vocabulary was:
  • keyboard
  • mouse
  • monitor
  • CPU
  • cursor
  • click
  • double-click
  • shift
  • return
  • delete
So, for an hour on Mondays and Wednesdays, we're going back to the basics. It was actually kind of fun (outside all the running around to different computers to make sure everyone's looking at the right thing...) On top of that, it turns out that adults are much more engaged in learning :-) (I know, big surprise) So, we had a good time. Hopefully it continues as well as it started!

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