Techniques in Lecturing Less

Discover themes in Participatory Learning
example projects for all ages
and Get inspiration from teachers like you!

Click the navigation items to learn how to lecture less in your classroom.

General things about this site:

As a teacher, I am always looking for new and innovative ways to lecture less in my classroom. I am particularly interested in how students connect to digital media, and how technology can be a tool for active learning.

Although I teach full-time at Columbia College Chicago, I have also spent time working in the Chicago Public Schools as a Teaching Artist with CAPE, and as a Digital Media Mentor with Convergence Academies. After spending time in CPS high schools, I realized that students love being on their phone, they love talking to each other, they love tinkering with media and figuring out things on their own.

Why not use the phone (or other new media) as a tool for learning? Why not have them learn professional communication skills by doing more group work?

Teachers K-16: use these techniques to develop enthusiastic live-long learners.

About the creation of the site:

I created this site through my Research Fellowship position with Convergence Academies to investigate quality teaching that uses participatory learning strategies. This site came after a series of interviews with the Digital Media Mentors from Convergence Academies in which themes emerged that I wanted to share with teachers of all levels, K-16.

About the quotes:

From a series of interviews with Digital Media Mentors through the Convergence Academies organization, the quotes were conducted with the desire to get a better understanding of what successful participatory learning looks like. These interviews were the guiding force to reveal successful participatory learning themes and examples.

Why Digital Media Mentors?

Digital Media Mentors are specially trained to integrate new-media playing, tinkering, and active learning to engage with their students.

Convergence Academies choose Digital Media Mentors selectively, and train them to push core concepts of consuming, creating, and connecting. Because these are attributes I see as vital to 21st Century teaching and learning, their experiences are worth exploring for the betterment of our teaching.

For more about Convergence Academies:


All images are from the Convergence Academies public Flickr site: FLICKR.COM/PHOTOS/CONVERGENCEACADEMIES/


Thank you in particular to Mindy Faber and the Digital Media Mentors for their time and wisdom.

© Participatory Learning Strategies