Since I’ve begun writing on a more consistent basis, I’ve come across so much beneficial information that I can scarcely keep track of it all. Use strong verbs, write what you know, watch those “to be” verbs, and just do it are but the tip of the iceberg (excuse the cliché). No, actually, they’re the tip of the tip because there’s so much to learn.
A suggestion that I’ve seen several times is to write something that people might actually want to read. That’s funny, right? I mean, why would a person write something that no one wanted to read? Well, apparently, I’ve done just that with Crossing the Bridge: Succeeding in a Community College and Beyond.
While the book is doing “okay” both as an eBook and a hard copy, naturally I’d like to pump up the distribution a bit. Not because I need the $$ but because students need the information that I’m trying to share. Based on 35+ years of teaching experience, I know what challenges students face and how to help them manage their time, get a handle on stress, choose the right major, succeed in online courses, and a host of other topics.
But I’m not trying to convince you of that, Dear Reader. I’m just sharing some insight, insight that became more clear last week when talking with a colleague. She’s setting up an opportunity for me to discuss some of the book’s topics and is pondering the best approach to use.
“Our students just don’t read,” she said, her frustration and anguish coming through loud and clear across the miles.
“I’ve experienced that too,” I replied. “Every semester people ask if they have to read the textbook.”
In order to get students more engaged at the upcoming event, I’m putting together some activities to accompany some of the information in Crossing the Bridge. For starters, I’m thinking of developing a sample syllabus and having the participants locate information like test dates and assignment due dates. I’m also considering an inventory to help students recognize some of their skills, aptitudes, and interests. I might throw in a little Stephen Covey too. Maybe it would be fun for everyone to write a mission statement.
If it sounds like I’m going a little overboard, then maybe I am. It’s because as a psychology instructor I believe that learning and applying psychological concepts such as self-efficacy and positive reinforcement can improve a person’s life, and I KNOW that the application of the principles in Crossing the Bridge will help the reader to be a more successful student and effective person.
Now if I can just figure out how to get students to read the book and follow its suggestions. It’s a fun and informative book. It even has pictures!