A renewed commitment by campus leaders to pedagogy has fueled a pilot project in which 30 faculty members have revamped their roles and now use team-based learning for their courses. For the last three semesters, a 54-seat classroom in Goodell and a 90-seat one in the W.E.B. Du Bois Library have served as incubators for the experiment. So far, the experiment has met with rave reviews and five more team-based classrooms are planned for an academic facility under construction on North Pleasant Street.
As UMass Amherst tennis players Julia Comas and Gianna Francis read a book about a character who transforms from couch potato to a road race winner, the children in a Head Start classroom in Holyoke, Mass., sat spellbound. Comas and Francis read Henry Gets Moving, which is written in English and Spanish by Pierre Rouzier, a physician at University Health Services, and Chaz Nielsen ’06.
It takes just four minutes for an expert to shear a sheep, but veterinary and animal science students learn from experience that it takes a full year of close attention to ensure that the fleece is of high quality.
When the students work with the 40 or so Dorset sheep at Hadley Farm, they must take care to keep the wool clean, explains livestock barn manager Alice Newth. While they’re feeding the sheep and cleaning the barns they ensure that no hay, sawdust, burrs, manure, or other impurity lodges itself deep in the dense wool.