Every few weeks, I stop in the middle of class and remind students of the whole narrative of the course.
“This is where we’re going. This is what we’re doing. This is why we are doing it.” I reiterate the whole thing again.
We’ll have the same conversation in a few weeks (then again a few weeks after that).
If we don’t pause to remember where we’re going–what it’s all for–we lose the narrative of the course. If we lose that narrative, students choke upon the details. They don’t move forward.
Often, I find myself assuring students that it doesn’t make sense now, but it will.
It will. One day soon, this will all come together, and you’ll see.
Since I’ve been teaching so long, I can make this promise. I know what they don’t know. I see what they can’t see. All the pieces will fit beautifully because I designed this course.
Suddenly, I remember the importance of connecting to that Larger Narrative–the one true story–that guides my life. If God designed it, then I’m pausing to consider the narrative: Where are we going, God? What are we doing? Why?
If I lose these answers, I lose everything. I choke upon details because I forget where we’re going.
Do you take time to remember the big picture?
Yes, I think I do take time to remember the big picture. You have presented it well, and the analogy to the way an academic course develops is very apt. Thanks for always making us think and for your delightful perspective shared in this blog.