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Melissa Kakuk

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Just. Keep. Learning.

Lifelong learning is a huge part of my teaching philosophy. Learning doesn’t end when the reading ends, or the lecture ends, or the course ends. Students (and teachers) need to keep up with changes, refresh learning, and be open to learn new things always.  Original art credit: https://www.123rf.com/photo_61591137_stock-vector-back-to-school-freehand-drawing-school-items-on-a-sheet-of-exercise-book-.html

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Biggest Learning Challenge

I returned to school as an adult (12 years after my undergrad) to do my Masters and this was incredibly challenging.  First, online/distance education was a new skill to learn.  Also, I was working part-time at the college and, at the same time, I was working full-time outside of education.  Unexpectedly, my full-time job took me on some travels all over Ontario which meant I was parenting two busy boys by Skype and trying to get a handle on some […]

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Icebreaker

I use a Bingo game icebreaker with very random questions and the students need to interact and find out who fits into the box. With a treat incentive, students interact wildly and it is very chaotic for about 10-15 minutes. The first winner is one who forms an “X”, then a box, and then a full card. Some examples include: “is a bottle blonde”; “has traveled outside of North America”; “owns a reptile”; “knows who the Goonies are”; “supports Gryffindor”… […]

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Motivation – “What’s in it for me?”

In third semester, students in my program do field placement which is 300 hours of placement in a setting related to their career aspirations. Students want to do well on placement which already a strong motivator, and this is why I developed a Placement Panel Day. About two-thirds of the agencies we currently use are available to attend a networking event. It is not mandatory, but students are encouraged to attend. Because it is simulating a professional setting, students are […]

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Back to Basics

This concept map represents four core concepts of study in Group Dynamics. It is a course that is quite “common sense” and yet students seem to find it difficult. Here, prior learning is helpful because it shows how these very basic concepts that we have learned in kindergarten are reinforced and applied to scenarios they will face throughout the course. Source: Fulghum, R. (1988). All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten: Uncommon thoughts on common things. New York: […]

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