A couple of years ago, while taking an online course on blogging – the TESOL EVO course, 2006 – I was introduced to Ed Nuhfer. He was an invited guest on a fascinating course about JiTT: Just in Time Teaching. Ed Nuhfer gave an online presentation about Knowledge Surveys. It was an interesting presentation, well backed up by data collected by Nuhfer over a number of years. It was great to be able to interact with an expert, and Nuhfer directed me to his online teacher-development newsletters called Nutshell Notes.

Today, I wanted to review some of these, particularly ones about a Teaching System. I clicked on an old link, but it came up empty. However, I typed Nutshell into the search function, and found that all of Ed Nuhfer’s Nutshell Notes have been put together into a PDF downloadable file (1.36 mb). Indexed and all. Wonderful. Ones I particularly enjoyed are issues on syllabus, teaching to elicit higher levels of thinking, rubrics, and a series about the Perry model (of university student intellectual development). Nuhfer liked to keep his Nutshell Notes to one A4 page.

Speaking of professional development for teachers, here’s another rich and thought-provoking resource I discovered, by chance, a couple of years ago: James Atherton (now retired) has a blog, Recent Reflection, which provides links to his two other main sites (static, not blogs): doceo and learning and teaching. I haven’t figured out what the difference is between the two: I’ve found practical articles on note-taking or creating handouts as well as more philosophical articles about learning styles (Atherton thinks that pandering to learning styles may be doing the students a disservice). The doceo site has a nice graphic index where you can browse just by clicking the mouse, and so does the learning and teaching site.

Visiting Atherton’s blog is fun if you enjoy serendipity. The item on the top today when I visited was this enchanting item about inflatable street art. “It’s what art is all about.” Check it out.