Melanie Lenart's Teaching Philosophy
Students learn in many ways and in different cultural contexts. My teaching is designed to suit the many different ways and cultural contexts in which students learn. I integrate visual, audial and kinesthetic approaches into lessons to support different learning styles. I often incorporate collaborative interactions featuring learner-based approaches. Whenever possible, I include hands-on activities.
In the Water Harvesting course, my colleague and I worked with students to design and carry out water harvesting projects in the community, such as by shaping the landscape and planting several fruit trees behind the local food co-op. In my environmental writing class, I worked one-on-one with students to help them produce original, well-researched stories suitable for posting on our web-based publication, Southwest Environment. My students have consistently identified this hands-on approach as one of the most valued aspects of their education.
My pedagogical strategies help students incorporate information in a way that makes it their own, a useful framework they can build upon with other learning. I consider it part of my job to prepare students for success in future endeavors, whether they involve the professional sphere or continuing education.