Gavin Brockett is an associate professor of History and Religion and Culture and associate dean of Arts: Student Affairs and Learning. As a Teaching Fellow, Brockett serves as a resource to colleagues developing active learning and experiential learning courses at Laurier. He is committed to exploring the efficacy of bringing Canadian students into conversation with their peers in other countries through globally connected, active learning.
Effective teaching must be learning-centred. We take into account the interests and needs of our students, and we draw on our disciplinary knowledge and professional experience. However, the proof that our time is well spent lies in the evidence that the students with whom we spend time are indeed learning. This requires flexibility and investment of effort: each year our students are different and they present different challenges. An effective teacher should be tired but satisfied.
I am inspired by the genuine desire of students to work hard and learn. When they are treated with respect and when we approach the task of teaching thoughtfully and realistically, students are inspired to invest in the hard work necessary to learn. There is nothing more gratifying than the realization that your own hard work has enabled you to draw on your own extensive knowledge and experience to inspire future generations to gain both knowledge and skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives.
“Encountering the Realities of Conflict in Israel-Palestine”. This field-course enables me to introduce students to the complex realities of an enduring conflict that has had a tremendous impact on the daily lives of people. Together we engage with people who experience the conflict each day and we wrestle with the contradictions and challenges that emerge in our conversations with them. It is a privilege to journey with students as they gain a deeper understanding of this critical topic while coming to terms with the strong emotions that it engenders.
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