Lecturing, Attending, and Individual Work13 Jan 2017
What is different at Goods of the Mind vs. other organizations that teach online, especially math? The main difference is that we do not ‘lecture’ and the student does not ‘attend’. Instead, we work together. While other providers may teach the facts of math, we are more interested in the effect of our lessons on the students’ ability to create and build. A lecturer, no matter how good, delivers a lecture. We, on the other hand, work with the students through the topic. There is a difference. By working with students we learn a lot about their process, time constraints, goals, and what it takes to help them progress faster. With us, it is about each student.
Taking a class with us opens a different world of learning. We do not only produce a lesson, a lecture, a set of homeworks, we also care a lot about what happens at the students’ end. We help them out in different ways: by giving feedback on their work, on their work habits, on the strategies that they use, by answering their questions, and by building with them those bridges that connect the vast sea of facts they need to have command of.
We teach students how to learn, effectively turning them into powerful independent learners. We believe that this is the most important outcome of our work, not the short term improvement in grades or test scores.
However, to make the most of the learning experience at Goods of the Mind, the student should have sufficient time to work independently, attempting (with any degree of success) to make sense of the theory, to solve problems, to make connections. The degree of success on independent problem solving is not expected to be 100%. Instead, we use every unsolved problem as an opportunity to learn.