After seven weeks of teaching a live class and also recording for the web, I learned something. I had devised my method for the class based on a series of circumstances. The method I was using was not the best. I have a better plan going forward.
The way I have been teaching is as follows:
- I write up translation notes the day of class.
- I go over these notes with students in class.
- Students go home and translate using my notes.
- Next week we are on a new text (no discussion of the translations already done).
The way this method came about:
- I planned to stand at a dry erase board and write out words and discuss features with students.
- People on the web (social media, my blogs) said they would like to access my class online.
- I made a plan to try and combine live class and web material into one great effort.
- I post some translation helps a week in advance.
- Students use my notes all week long to help them prepare and translate.
- In class we discuss the translations that have been done (and perhaps this generates more notes, catching what was originally unclear).
- Now when we are in class, the students prepared in advance and the discussion is more about finer points and interpretation than mechanics.
It’s a little like chavruta study in Jewish tradition (pairs, or 2-4 people who come prepared to dialogue about a text). We prepare in advance. Then we discuss. This gets us beyond mechanics into the finer points and into interpretation.
I am not planning to post audio online from the study sessions, but perhaps will do more audio of me reading verses for people who want to learn to read better.