The student becomes the teacher

Devyn Irvin

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Walking up to the front of the room, a group of students hold their poster with shaky hands and racing heartbeats. They look at each other and nod, ready to present their project. Chemistry teacher Joseph McKenzie’s classes participated in group presentations, where students were assigned topics such on the heat and energy transfer unit, they taught to their peers.

The audience was encouraged to take notes and ask questions, so presenters could fully teach their topics. Some students made posters, while others did Jeopardy games, Kahoots, PowerPoints or posters. The presentations began on Wednesday, March 27, after they were assigned earlier in the week.

Each presentation was required to be between 12 and 15 minutes. For some groups the time requirement was an advantage, as it gave them enough time to teach their topic thoroughly. However, for others it came as a disadvantage, as they had to figure out a way to fill the empty space.

“I tried to do my best to make it to the time limit,” sophomore Adam Garcia said. “I was worried at the same time because of how long it took me to prepare.”

While some students enjoyed the overall project as it deviated from their typical class lessons, others did not like the burden of being in front of an audience.

“The length of the presentation made me nervous because I had to be in front of the class for so long,” sophomore Dylan Irvin said. “It honestly made never want to be a teacher.”

The project allowed McKenzie’s students to be creative, and give them perspective on what it is like to be a teacher. Some students enjoyed the project, and felt that their end result was a success.

“I feel that we worked hard on the project and came up with good questions,” sophomore Jayson Taronji said. “[We] explained the topic fully and thoroughly so that the other students could understand it easily. I didn’t feel nervous at all and we finished right on time when we were supposed to.”