Limed: Teaching with a Twist – Episode 7

Dr. Travis Maynard found a game called “Silicon Valley Startups” at a Goodwill store and turned it into the basis for introducing his professional writing and rhetoric students to the skills and concepts needed for brand development and producing print, digital, audio, and video campaigns. He joins the podcast to share some of his lessons learned and ask our panel about ways to battle project and semester fatigue while making subtle improvements to a fun idea. Jill McSweeney rejoins the podcast along with John Spencer and Annelise Weaver to share their insights and ideas to keep students engaged and compare and contrast class projects from working on projects as a professional.  

This episode of Limed: Teaching with a Twist is hosted by Matt Wittstein and produced by Dhvani Toprani and Matt Wittstein in collaboration with the Center for Engaged Learning.

View a transcript of this episode.

About the Guest

Headshot of Travis Maynard

Travis Maynard is an Assistant Professor of English at Elon University where he teaches courses in the Professional Writing and Rhetoric program. Dr. Maynard’s research interests include multimodal composition and alumni writing experiences. He recently contributed to the edited collection Writing Beyond the University: Preparing Lifelong Learners for Lifewide Writing. In the classroom he enjoys giving students the opportunity to be creative while developing both rhetorical and technological theories and skills, and he is energized by the consistently impressive work his students create. 

About the Panel

Woman standing in a wooded area. She's wearing a black jacket and a scarf with various shades of red. She has glasses on top of her head, and she's looking back over her shoulder.

Jill McSweeney has worked in Educational Development for almost a decade. She began her work at Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, where she completed her PhD, and is now an Assistant Director for the Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning and an Assistant Professor at Elon University. She actively engages in scholarship around educational development and the scholarship of teaching and learning, publishing in journals such as Teaching and Learning Inquiry, the International Journal of Academic Development and The International Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. She approaches her teaching and educational development work with the focus of facilitating a space where learners and colleagues can create connections and meaning with themselves and their learning/teaching. To learn more about her teaching and ongoing scholarship, visit her on Twitter or her Faculty Profile.

Headshot of a man wearing a blazer. He's smiling and looking slightly right of camera.

John Spencer is a middle-school teacher turned author, speaker, and college professor with a passion for creativity and design thinking. He struggled with dyslexia and ADHD as a child, which led him to appreciate the power of education to transform lives. Currently, John serves as a professor of Educational Technology and Entrepreneurship at George Fox University. He also works as a consultant, providing training and workshops for educators and organizations on topics related to design thinking, creativity, and entrepreneurship. With a Bachelor’s degree in Education and a Master’s in Educational Technology, John has spent his career inspiring students and educators to embrace innovation and creative learning approaches. You can learn more about John and his work on his website:  

A woman sits on a low brick wall. In the background are flowering bushes.

Annelise Weaver is a sophomore at Elon University pursuing her undergraduate degree in Psychology, with minors in both Spanish and Communications. She is currently a CEL Student Scholar, conducting research on Work-Integrated Learning. Through CEL, she has had the opportunity to work with international, multi-institutional collaborators that have allowed her to expand her knowledge on the topic. Annelise also works in the university Registrar’s office as a student assistant, advising students with degree requirements. She holds leadership positions as the student director for Girls in Motion, a mentoring program for elementary and middle school girls that focuses on physical activity and nutrition, and as the education coordinator for the Intersect Conference, a conference examining the inter-disciplinary work around diversity and leadership. 

Resources Related to this Episode

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The Problem with Assessing Groups

One of the challenges an instructor faces when developing any collaborative project is how to assess learning. When multiple students work together to create some product, it’s not necessarily the case that the final product reflects the learning of all…

Collaboration and Memory

When Does Collaboration Hurt Memory?

Take six people and give them all a list of words to commit to memory individually. Next, have three of those people work as a group to recall as many words as they can. Have the other three people try…

Do Cohesive Groups Matter?

In previous posts (here and here), I’ve been writing about the different ways that groups can be created for class projects, and whether the method of group assignment has an impact on learning. In this post, I want to focus on one…

A Complicated and Qualified Recommendation for Creating Groups

As a warning, I’m going to talk about methods again for part of this post because I can’t seem to help myself, but I will actually make a recommendation by the end, so there is a payoff if you bear…

  • Self-Determination Theory
  • Schlechty, Phillip C. 2011. Engaging Students: The Next Level of Working on the Work. John Wiley & Sons. 
  • Silicon Valley Start-Ups Game