Ken Bain discusses how formative assessment (what he refers to as “testing in a non-threatening environment”) is actually better for students than just just studying over the information repeatedly (what he calls “rehearsing”). He points out that there is actually a large body of research supporting this.
Ken Bain talks about beginning your first class with a story. He references Professor Michael Sandel, who teaches a course on ethics at Harvard University. Sandell’s begins his first course with: “This is a course on ethics and we begin with a story.” A video recording of that class session is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBdfcR-8hEY.
Ken Bain discusses the fact that we do not have to “stuff the student’s brain full of facts” before they can start “doing” the discipline they are studying. His example is the piano teacher. The teacher does not tell the student they cannot play the piano until they learn to play the piano.
Ken Bain discusses the way students tend to take a surface, strategic, or deep learning approach to learning. According to Bain, people are most likely to take a deep approach “when they are trying to answer questions, or solve problems, that they, (the learner) have come to regard as important, intriguing, or just beautiful.”
He describes how you can use the first day of class to cultivate an interest in your students that can lead them to taking a deep learning approach.