I thought it was a course for introducing communication skills in Chinese when I was selecting the course for this semester. But when Xu got on the stage and started his talk using a native-like fluency and pronunciation, “What a rip off?!”, actually not so exaggerated, just a little unbelievable. What I was confused is, I don’t really know where I will be to or I shall live so that I can whether get this knowledge useful in my life. And when comes the time to the course, it brings my doubts down.
Generally speaking, this course and the reference book introduce the communication skill from detailed behavior techniques to generalized and macroscopical methodology.
The book contains tons of theories and instructions which we are either abstract or concrete. It may seem to be extremely boring if I just look into the textbook, but Xu’s personal stuff really enhance the enjoyment for my whole Wednesday, even every week. For this reason, maybe a reduction of the content of personal experiences sharing in class is not quite advisable. But an alternative solution, to get the “experience to be an example of theory”, but not “sharing for just sharing”, is the way to let this course more desirable got both students and teacher. Xu can always return to the topic, but for most of the time, his story turns to be tediously long, but surprisingly, it’s really interesting. I think, sometimes a cutting off for useless details may help saving time, and set time apart for more theories or stories.
The corresponding order of theory appearance on textbook should also relate to the time schedule. From what I’ve learned in this term, those skills and information on the textbook is a progressive tutorial for our dummies, but the course Xu taught is not actually in that order. It seems reasonable to introduce some chapters in advance, but I felt a sense of weird when we skipped several parts we’d learned when it comes to the latter part of this course. I hope Xu could take it into consideration because I’m also not very sure about the method.
For the aspect of in-class content, Xu may raise more requirement and instruction for the presentation and the slide, due to it’s a process to teach a student how to teach others. It’s not possible that every people has his/her proper way to teach a lesson well, but people doomed to learn how to teach, sooner or later in their life. I’ve gone through a lot of course in the past decade, either formal professional course or casual sharing workshop or sth else, the presenter cannot get a good expression of what he/she wants us to learn, and of course, we’d learn it by ourselves. Times and times I remember those scene and I know I would teach someone someday, maybe as a college teacher, or as a father, I cannot imagine a disaster of a total teaching failure. Xu can always raise a lot of advice after our presentation, and I hope there could be some specific and detailed instruction and suggestion before our speech.
At last, I’d like to mention the examination part a little. I know that students won’t get this “friendly final” in the next semester, what a tragedy. It’s really quite hardcore for the mid-exam to be an open-book-test and I should search for a lot of sentences that I can’t even find on the textbook. Maybe a few open-ended questions are more acceptable to me, also with open-book, absolutely.
Thanks for the great sharing of the course and ideas of Xu in this semester. The things really matter is not what I learned, but more likely about the “growth”. It cannot turn into words, and in a way, I can feel it and take it into actions.
May 29th, 2019