Roundtable Discussions | Webster University

Roundtable Discussions

Roundtable Discussions are opportunities for faculty members to share effective and innovative teaching in short presentations followed by questions from the audience.  Roundtable Discussions are held on Friday, February 22 from 10:00am – 3:00pm in the Faculty Development Center, Emerson Library, Room 420.

Find the Story in the Song: Teaching the Genres of Storytelling through Music


  • Carol Hoyt, Associate Professor, Department of Teacher Education
  • Lori Diefenbacher, Experiential Learning, Education for Global Sustainability, School of Education

The presenters will share the ways in which they incorporate song lyrics into a Language Arts course to extend the major genres of storytelling (family folklore, literary stories, myth, folklore and historical stories.)  The songs will be performed live, however, participants will be presented with a songbook of lyrics organized by genre as well an annotated bibliography of recordings for use in the classroom.  From Mike Fink, to Jesse James, to John Prine, to Loreena McKennitt, the role of “slice of life” songs, ballads, and historical songs will be elaborated.  While participants will be invited to sing along, they are also welcome to listen.

Honoring a Sustainable Future with Curriculum


  • Lori Diefenbacher, Experiential Learning, Education for Global Sustainability, School of Education

Many instructors shy away from revising curriculum to address a sustainable future because "I can't add anything more to my plate." It is not necessary to design all new curriculum. Connecting to the principles and practices of sustainability in small ways can transform a class, lesson, or course into a more meaningful, relevant experience. This session will share simple adaptations and pedagogy for education for sustainability. 

Enhancing Oral Communication Beyond Your Classroom


  • Ralph Olliges, Chair & Associate Professor, Coordinator-M.E.T. Education Tech/President of the Faculty Senate, Multidisciplinary Studies Department, School of Education

I propose demonstrating how to use some common tools that have been around for many years to create a 21st century learning experience. This is accomplished by having students take photos of a subject to demonstrate their learning of the material. They place the photos in powerpoint. They must then write a speech and create the audio to explain or enhance the image in powerpoint. Finally, they upload the podcast to YouTube. This allows the students to gain effective oral communication skills beyond the classroom without even being in the classroom to a worldwide audience.

Teaching a Course I Don't Know Everything About:  Towards A Model for Inter-Departmental Course Content
Presenter:  Liz Miller, Electronic/Photographic Media Department, School of Communications
A traditional Art course on Color Theory is cross-listed with a Media course, and expanded to address its topic more holistically, with the goal of exposing students to content drawn from broader multi-disciplinary and multicultural perspectives, in order to expand the applicability of the course content. In doing so, it came to light that a number of lectures in the course could be delivered collaboratively with other faculty specializing in overlapping fields.

In designing such a course, opportunities surface for the involvement of faculty beyond a single discipline, and beg the question: Could we be doing this more often, with more courses, and if so, how might we structure these cooperative, collaborative endeavors?