CCC Student E-Mail

Welcome to spring semester 2013! In my first official post as a contributor on the HL, I would like to share a video. In this video, I show students how to access their student e-mail accounts. It’s posted on You Tube, and I used a free Snag It trial to create it.  Feel free to share this video with your students, if you like.

What’s Snag It, you ask? Well, I created a video on Snag It, too. That video, though, was created for a different audience. If you’re interested in seeing the Snag It video and perhaps hearing me wax eloquent about its cat’s pajamas-like functionality, then let me know, and I will post it, too.

In Case You Missed It

So, in case you haven’t seen them, there have been a bunch of interesting comments going up all weekend on Speechfromtheblock’s post of the Mayor’s speech.

My best guess is that someone assigned her/his class to read the speech and post some comments about it.

Whoever that was (assuming I’m write), I just wanted to say that I love it! Rock on.

And that goes for the posting students, too!

In what ways can a teacher get in the way of a students’ growth?

In what ways can we teachers actually impede the growth of a student, despite our best intentions? It is a fundamental element of my teaching philosophy that it is my job to stimulate a student’s curiosity and enable them to learn and process new information on their own, and that I must avoid the model in which I give them the information that I expect them to absorb. Despite this being my goal, I probably get in the way of that goal, every time I get frustrated by something a student says or writes, and every time I try to give them my “wise advice” about learning and life.

I was meeting with some students today, and one of them related a conversation had with a professor. The student’s account was of expressing about two hours worth of thoughts to the professor, and that the professor merely listened with enthusiasm and interest. The student’s reaction was absolutely warm and positive. I realize that if I had been in the student’s position, I would probably have felt the same way, and thankful that someone’s character and intellect I respected would let me elaborate my thoughts. I also realized that I have never been that professor: that when a student comes to visit me, I perhaps deliver “sage advice” all too often. If I was a student visiting myself as a professor, I wonder if I would become frustrated? I wonder if I would have “learned” that my thoughts were not good enough? My teaching habits may be at odds with my teaching philosophy goals.

PhiloDave related a story a while back about dealing with “silent students” that is of a similar vein: the desire to get students talking can be distracting and counter-productive for those students, of whom I was a member, who are generally quiet and reflective, and more comfortable thinking through the ideas slowly.

Have you had a similar epiphany? In what ways have you gotten in the way of a student’s learning?

Did you see this CCC email?

This email came to my attention so I thought I’d share. You’re welcome… anytime.

It’s a straight copy-and-paste (no changes to the formatting either) from an email dated June 30, 2010 that went out to our student body:

This message was authorized by Angela Henderson,Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs, Planning & Research.
Beginning Fall Term, students at the City Colleges of Chicago will be using Google Gmail as their new CCC Student Email.

Students’ email addresses and passwords to login to Student  Gmail will remain the same, as will the website address of their email server:

Gmail provides many new benefits, including:

– Increased Mailbox Limit to 7GB
– Increased Attachment Size Limit to 25MB
– Improved anti-spam and anti-virus protection
– Access to other Google Applications: Docs, Chat and Google Sites

The conversion to Student Gmail will begin August 2nd and by August 7th, all student email messages will be migrated to each student’s Gmail account.

This Summer, District OIT will host workshops about how instructors can use Google Apps for such applications as student-to-student collaboration and student e-portfolios. For more information about using Google Apps for Education, watch this Google webinar:

If you have questions about Gmail, please send an email to

Sose I’m waiting for faculty to be contacted by District OIT to learn “about how instructors can use Google Apps for such applications as student-to-student collaboration and student e-portfolios.” I’ve watched the video. There’s some pros and cons here.

I just have a couple of questions:
1. Any faculty out their have multiple students collaborating on one written assignment?
2. Will I be required to post my syllabus here too?