Posts by Dawn

Life Value

I value life. I was that kid who opened the jar when my brother had managed to capture a bee (or snake, bird, raccoon, girlfriend…).

Although I suggested to those who asked, that my choice to pursue a career in corrections was a practical one (job security, benefits, no foreign language requirement); I actually chose it because I believed that I could improve the lives of other people. I could reduce victimization. I could save people from brutal torture, rape, and murder.  I wanted to open the jar.

I got my wish. Every day, I kept people safe. One day, someone I admired at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay, Wisconsin convinced me that I could keep many more people safe by training up the next batch of correctional professionals. She said, “We can teach you how to teach.” And, here we are, twenty years later, and I am still learning how to teach. Continue reading

“But, I can’t graduate if you don’t offer that course!”

What to do?

When tough choices are made about what courses to run and what courses to cut, students can feel pretty vulnerable and instructors can feel both powerless and responsible.

 “It was great learning different things in multiple classes – I greatly appreciate this class.”

More and more, when we hit these impasses, we turn to technological advances to fashion a response.  We push the limits of our resources and dream up futuristic advances to somehow meet the needs of the student. With two recent program curriculum changes, I ended up with nine students in need of three different program classes. I felt responsible, and my interim director gave me the power. Forget about technology!

“It was fun to have the classes combined.”

We implemented the ultimate interactive experience: the one room school house!  We did forgo the slate and chalk, but all that was great about the one room schoolhouses of the past permeated our learning experience. Continue reading

Tactical Committee Sitting

Kids_in_jailTactical classes are cool

When I tell my students to bring their mouth guards and knee pads to class, everyone gets excited and everyone learns.  When it comes to learning, instructors and learners agree: 

Simulation is the bomb! 

Learners will never forget what they learned in scenarios:  on that day when they took on a role, probably someone they hope to be one day, and applied what they learned in a realistic situation with realistic equipment, props, environments, and subjects. Continue reading