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How to use this Book—Pedagogical Background for Students and Teachers

15.3 Assignments and Activities

Depending on your course schedule and your pedagogical priorities, the content of this book will be too much to teach in one term. Teaching is a game of adaptation: we must be flexible, responding to our constraints and our students’ particular needs. To that end, we encourage you to pick and choose the units, assignments, and activities that you find most valuable and tailor those units, assignments, and activities to your class.

All that said, another major goal of this text is to provide support to developing instructors. Especially if this is your first experience teaching, you are more than welcome to use this text to structure and develop your syllabus, conduct activities, and prepare assignments. Rely on this text as much as you find it useful.
Each activity in this text is designed to help practice a discrete skill, but developing writers don’t always make that connection right away: be sure to allow for time to debrief to explore what the students can take away from each assignment. Doing so will allow the students to translate skills more easily.
Furthermore, they will also reveal learning that you may not have anticipated, providing for rich in-class discussion.


Feel free to bounce around between Chapters and Sections as appropriate to your course.


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Expression and Inquiry by Christopher Manning; Sally Pierce; and Melissa Lucken is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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