When I was doing corporate training it was common for us to keep a bag of candy close by to throw at trainees from time to time.
“Good answer. Have a Hershey’s Kiss.” Toss, catch, unwrap, eat. It broke any monotony and kept trainees on their toes.
I have been thinking about how I can implement a similar training/educational scenario for the students in the college classes I teach. My classes can at times be rather large so I think I am going to have to modify my approach. Rather than a sack of candy, I think I am going to invest in a paintball gun.
“Smith, John Q., what did Aristotle have to say about Plato’s metaphysical dualism?”
The room grows silent as student Smith, John Q. considers his response. His pause extends a little too long. It is apparent that he has not read pages 66-87 of A.H. Armstrong’s An Introduction To Ancient Philosophy. So, I deftly reach into my briefcase, pull my new 08 Spyder MR2 to my shoulder, and squeeze the trigger.
Thwap! Thwap! Thwap! Three paintballs slap into the chest of student Smith, John Q. The monotony is broken, and there is plenty of incentive for students to do their assigned reading prior to the next class session.
Pedagogy at its best!