What does it mean to teach in the era of Google, when students can easily access information on wikipedia and other online sources?
As a professor in 21st century society, I believe I have three jobs:
To help my students think critically about the overload of information, "studies," and statistics coming their way. This means teaching them to examine the politics behind knowledge production, to ask intelligent questions that uncover the complexities of every situation, and to form opinions that are authentic, creative, reflexive, and humane.
To promote in my classroom what I wish to see across society: inclusion, respect, and enthusiasm for different ideas and perspectives. As a teacher, this means creating a welcoming environment for students of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, socioeconomic classes, gender identities, sexual orientations, religions, learning styles, and the many other identities that make us unique -- and great!
To treat my students as people. We are all doing our best to navigate the challenges of life, and for a few brief moments we get to do it together. It is through our humanity that we apprehend the world, that we take in new information, and that we transform it into positive contributions to society. I hope my classroom is a place in which we celebrate each our unique histories, personalities, interests and needs.