How does teaching shape a person’s self-image?

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Episode 603: Punch you Texas State University

Beginning to teach can make us reconsider our image of ourselves. Teaching assistants may feel like both students and teachers; both physics novices and a physics experts; both ordinary people and professionals. How does teaching shape a person’s self-image?

September 20, 2019

Pedagogy Content
Relating to students
Physics Content
STEM-wide audiences

Lesson Contents (4 MB)Student Handout
Transcript, discussion questions, and problem

(0 MB)Specific Lesson Guide
Facilitator's guide for this lesson

(1 MB)General Facilitator's Guide
Background and best practices

(430 MB)Video
Captioned video


Sample Discussion Prompts

  1. What do you notice in this episode? Talk to your neighbor about what stood out to you.
  2. Craig says Dustin is free to show the relative lengths of the normal and gravitational forces arbitrarily (line 11), but Dustin (initially) disagrees. What is his objection? Do you think he is right?
  3. What is “the whole reason” that Dustin “likes doing this” (line 14)?
  4. What do you think is going on with Dustin addressing his father in line 21?
  5. Dustin relates a sequence of difficult events that occurred while he was teaching. What happened? Retell the story in your own words.
  6. Profanity is often used to convey emotion, especially anger, frustration, and surprise; it can also add humor, emphasis, or shock value. What do you think is the function of the profanity that Dustin uses? How would his story be different if it lacked profanity?
  7. What does Dustin say in this episode that expresses his identity as a student? What does he say that expresses his identity as a teacher? What other identities does Dustin express?
  8. What does this episode suggest about how teaching shapes a person’s self-image?

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