Faithbookqueen (faithbookqueen) wrote in childbirth_edu,

Curriculum Developement from an email conversation

Thought some of you might find this email conversation interesting. These tips are great!

I also had a major mental block when it came to writing curriculum. It helped me to break it down into smaller steps. Here is how I started my curriculum:

I made a list of topics I wanted to cover. Put each topic on an index card. On the back of the card, I listed ideas for teaching that topic. (Like “lecture” Video” “Demonstration” etc. Some ideas were general like this, some were specific, like “Use pelvis to show ischial spines – move baby through pelvis to show station)

When I had a good stack of cards (I think it took a few weeks, because I kept thinking of more topics and ideas) I divided my stack of cards into 6 piles – one for each week of my classes. Topics I thought should be covered in week one went in the first pile, etc.

Again, I made adjustments over the course of a week or so as I thought about things.

Once I was pretty well set in the order of topics, I started looking at teaching ideas. I wanted a good mix of teaching ideas in each class, so I made some adjustments to avoid having an “all video” night, etc. I tried to figure out which topics were most important, and how to cover them in a way that would appeal to all of the biggest learning styles. I also had to estimate time & make sure I didn’t plan 4 hours worth of teaching ideas for a 2 hour class. I highlighted on the back of each card the teaching technique I planned to use. (I must have used several colors of highlighters as I – once again – mulled it over for a while)

Eventually, I typed up from my cards a basic outline of my class. Soon after I typed it up, I started revising. More revisions were made mid-course in the first series I taught. (Mainly because I am a lousy estimator of how much time things would take!) Come to think of it, I’ve been teaching 8 years and I’m still revising!

For handouts, Think seriously about how you will use them, and what your objective is. I try to only use handouts for two things:

“Extras” I won’t get to in class but that come up occasionally. These handouts I just keep around in case someone asks. Things like “What seafoods are dangerous in pregnancy?”, “resources for info on premature babies” etc.

Things I think will be good reference materials in labor. These are the ones I routinely give out to all the students in my classes, and I recommend they pack them in their labor bags.

Another thing I do with these handouts is a “Quick Quiz” – at the beginning of each class, I write a question about last week’s handouts on the board. When the students come in, they can choose to write their answer to the question, along with their name, and drop it in a box. At the start of class, I draw a winner or two and we review the answers. I always tell them it is “open notes” on the quiz, just like it will be in labor! (This reminds them that if they can’t remember positions for turning a posterior baby in labor, they CAN look at their notes!)

Make sure everything in your handouts matches what you’re teaching in classes.

Hope that is helpful. If you have more specific questions, ask them!

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