In Li Zhen’s ninth-grade mathematics class here last week, the morning drill was geometry. Students at the middle school affiliated with Jing’An Teachers’ College were asked to explain the relative size of geometric shapes by using Euclid’s theorem of parallelograms.Question: Should law students, lawyers, judges, and ... er ... law teachers be able to reason about this sort of problem?
A teacher instructed students in class at the middle school associated with Jing’An Teachers’ College in central Shanghai.
“Who in this class can tell me how to demonstrate two lines are parallel without using a proportional segment?” Ms. Li called out to about 40 students seated in a cramped classroom.
Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
I want my students to become acquainted with some basic constitutional rules & principles, but I do not want to use much course time to get my students to memorize leading cases and their holdings (which they will probably quickly forget after the examination). So I am thinking about using the bulk of class time to having students make arguments from specific constitutional perspectives about specific problems . Hence, at times I may ask students to play the role of Justice Black, Justice Frankfurter, or Justice Scalia. At other times I may ask students to formulate a constitutional argument not yet clearly ever embraced by any member of the Court.
I think such a course could be fun and instructive. But would it work?
On reflection, I think roles should be assigned a full week before class and the arguments should focus on the issue or issues in the "leading cases" that we will study. Correct? I think I might ask students to outline their arguments in advance in Google Docs that can be shared with every member of the class. Does this sound like a good idea?
Monday, December 27, 2010
Why do the faculty at UNC and other colleges say that a large number of students are very much above average? Plainly it is because faculty are rewarded if they do so and are punished if they give lower grades.