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#Teaching Lessons from a Wedding Ceremony

23 February 2016

Pardon me for my obsession with teaching scholarship, for nowadays I look for lessons everywhere… lessons to teach myself how to make my learners have the best of every session they are with me. So in January, I attended an exquisite wedding which I perceive was very well-planned possibly by a professional. The MC [whose name I don’t recall] was my focus before the bridal party arrived. Why? Because he caught my attention with this conduct. The part which interests me most is when he crowd-named the newlyweds. He told us it would be nice to find a short name for the couple, by concatenating their names. The groom was Franklin, and the bride, Araba. The suggestions began to flow. “Fraba”, one lady suggested. “Frankaba”, another said. Mr. MC reminded us of some ridiculous and ambiguous names that people suggested in his previous engagements. The reminder sounded like a subtle request for ridiculous and ambiguous suggestions. There was a new twist; someone mentioned that the groom’s other name was Kobby, so we could have “Koraba” [whose meaning is ambiguous if understood in a local dialect]. Well, the MC put the three names to a vote, and “Koraba” won with overwhelming majority, and was adopted as hashtag.

I learnt from this event, and relate to teaching and learning that;

  1. Learners know something [by all means]… even the one who is unable to answer a question knows something. It is my job to bring that knowledge out and use to create the new knowledge I seek to create in that session.
  2. Learners must needs be involved in knowledge-creation. It creates a sense of involvement, ownership and acceptance.
  3. Learners have fun learning when they are involved in creating knowledge – when the teacher doesn’t ‘force’ knowledge on them.
  4. Learners appreciate that they are involved in their own learning process. Recently,  I wanted to serve tea to learners in my evening class. One of them came to my office to help me prepare it. She asked why I wanted to serve the tea. “I want my class to be lively”, I replied. She said…

So far, it is only in your course that people get to talk in class, and they like it.

It was only the second week of using group tasks as the primary teaching method; and see the comments coming out. If you are a teacher, please share with me how you involve your learners; if you are learner, let me know how you would like to be involved in teaching and learning environments.

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