Re: Clarification: last night's remarks, teaching style

Tony Ballou

Hi Joseph, 

I understand where you are coming from all too well. As a former instructor who turned his attention and career from teaching to I T, some 10 years ago now, the main reason that I left teaching was students failing to practice concepts, lacking the initiative to try things on their own, and most of all just simply asking questions and thinking stuff through. I do still have a few students who have stayed with me through the years because they understand all of the things that you spoke about in your post, and that the road to being a success in this game is paved with mad scientism. Many times, success is achieved by first, having to deal with and conquering failure.  And we conquer this by thinking, practicing, asking questions, and eventually grasping the task. And once that's figured out, the sky can be the limit.



on 6/19/2017 4:57 PM, Joseph Lee wrote:

Dear NVDA community:


I have received several remarks offlist regarding my comment to Rosemarie last night in regards to asking her what she has learned through the Mail app problem. I’ll take full responsibility of my remarks and tone, as a practical step, I’ll refrain from posting to this list for the rest of the week (and if I have offended folks, my sincere apologies).


As for teaching style I tend to employ: perhaps my remark from last night came as a result of my approach to teaching, which calls for students to have willingness to think, or at least, learn to think critically by asking tough questions, have willingness to fail in hopes of learning important lessons, and learn from mistakes. Perhaps this came as a result of my communication studies and argumentation training, being a member of the competitive speech and debate squad, things I’ve observed on various forums where people just believe whatever leaders say, or something else. My overall intention for asking Rosemarie to tell me what she has learned was to get her to think critically about what she has gone through, not just get a problem fixed. If I say I’m satisfied with the resolution of a problem, then this means no future preparations and applications through careful thinking. I personally believe in a community where not only people offer solutions, but also a venue where members can think critically, and I do know from a decade’s worth of experience on various forums that I’m thinking of an ideal community. One thing I personally would like to see is folks teaching novices not only the beauty of NVDA through solutions, but also fostering a sense of taking ownership of a product and thinking about it; in other words, I think it would be best to prepare willing novices for a time in the future where novices themselves would become power users and teach folks not only NVDA, but also to think carefully. Also, personally, I do not want our NVDA community to just be called “a community of users and developers of NVDA” – one thing that sets our community apart from others is unity, and I think it would be beneficial in the long run to add another title: thinking individuals.





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