At its core the ATV Course uses the Case Study Method. Principles and strategies are explored through reading/listening to articles. Videos and exercises give examples and suggestions for practice. But it's by analyzing and developing case studies students move down The Learning Pyramid (at right). Following is a case study just developed by our new John Looney Intern. See November 2014 post about the current project.
I explained the rules: I would ask a discussion question, then while holding the speaking rock, I would explain my thoughts. After that, I would pass the rock to the left, to my dad, who would repeat what I said, word-for-word if possible, and then he would explain his position and pass it to his left, following the pattern.
After explaining the rules, I started the discussion by asking, “How can we as a family stay in touch with Abby as she studies abroad in Europe this semester?” I started by listing Skype, Facebook, and texting as ways to keep in touch. I passed the rock to my dad, who repeated what I said, then talked about how he and his siblings had a running Facebook message where they would post important things as they happened. He passed the rock to my mom, who repeated what my dad said, then added that she didn't know if texting was an option, but she does like Facebook and Skype. She was a bit more careful with choosing her words than Jeff and I had – we just spoke our ideas as we thought of them, without trying to summarize them nicely.
My younger sister repeated what my mom had said, then told my mom that we can text through the Google Voice app, and she was planning to use Facebook, Skype, tweeting, and postcards. She spent more time thinking out loud and repeating what she had already said, rather than choosing her words carefully, so Kate had some trouble remembering everything that Abby had said. After attempting to repeat Abby, Kate said that tweeting is her favorite way of keeping in contact. She kept it short for her husband, since she had such a hard time with Abby's rambling thoughts. Next was her husband James, who pointed out that since all the electronic ways to stay in contact have been mentioned he would add the suggestion of carrier pigeon. That's my brother-in-law for you.
For the second round, we brainstormed specific things we could commit to doing while for the last round, we discussed any final thoughts about keeping in touch with Abby.
Whilst writing this post, I asked my family to give me feedback on the activity. They said that it was definitely beneficial for all of us to have a chance to express our opinions and hear others' opinions, build off those thoughts, and spend time focusing on staying in touch with each other. I agree with my family; this activity allowed us to come together as a family and communicate over an issue that will ultimately keep us closer together.
Please push BEGINNERS GUIDE for more about How To Use This Course. Also to learn more about Active Listening including explanations, exercises, videos and case studies see SESSION THREE.
Submitted by Hannah Yackley
John Looney Intern 2015