Friday, July 27, 2012

Teaching ecology - help!

Big news - I'm moving to Haiti for the fall to teach tropical ecology and bio labs at a small university.  Yikes!  I need help with what to teach - does anyone have a syllabus they can share?  Recommendations for text books?  The students can't afford books, but the dean said there are kindles for them to share and she'll buy me the text and kindle uploads.  Right now they copy the pertinent chapters from the books and share the copies.  I'll teach in exchange for room and board - no salary, so I'm trying to figure that part out.  Haiti's only botanical garden is there!  It's a coastal town!  They allow cats in the guest house!  I don't have to cook!  Check my facebook for the latest person I friended and you might be able to see her pics. I'll post more details on facebook when I get there (late Aug).

I join your ranks as anonymous poster of teaching conundrums.  All your posts will be a great resource as I figure this out!


Beth said...

Wow!! Congrats!! That's a big move.

I have a normal ecology syllabus for the Smith and Smith Elements of Ecology book which is a good book for majors but a bit dense for non-majors.

I'm also supposed to be teaching Ecology in the Fall but my enrollment is low. :-( I was going to use simbio's SimUText which is an affordable, computer based book that comes with labs. You can pick and choose chapters that you want.

I'll send you the syllabi asap. :-)

salsis said...

Thanks! They want me to teach Project Management rather than general bio labs. I need to brainstorm about what that means.

So far I'm thinking this (with life sciences in mind, but there may be civil engineers and ag students in the class)
research project management - field notes, lab notes, tracking data, writing report, funding, being accountable to people who give you money, ethics in reporting
non-research project - ???
perhaps even introducing collection management in museums - just one class period on it

salsis said...

The Nebraskan bat lady gave me recommendations. (Kricher). now to figure out project management syllabus. They asked if I'd do a bio lab too that starts later in the semester, 15hrs. Haven't decided on that. I would train a student to do the labs for m=next year.

Erin said...

Congrats! This sounds like an exciting opportunity. I am teaching Ecology for majors for the first time this fall and am using Cain et al. 2008. There is a newer edition, but I am using the old one so students can buy it used. It is concise so it works for a quarter-long course.

I don't have a syllabus yet or else I would send it to you. But I have found that I always end up changing it quite a bit for the specific needs of the students, length of class, etc. There are many online that you could google. Maybe one would be close to what you need.

Project Management sounds interesting. I think I need to take that class from you. Maybe I can plan a trip to Haiti some day!

Good luck with the big move. Sounds really amazing!

Jenny said...

Wow, SalSis! Congratulations! How is the syllabus coming along?