As an instructor, I like to show students the basics and let them learn by doing. I don’t do gimmicks. It’s just not me. I prefer to let the topic lead the session and handle questions as they come. I prepare PowerPoints and/or notes, but ad lib most of the presentation/lecture/discussion. I have no problem standing in front of a crowd and talking about what I know; I lost any sense of timidity after my first semester as a TA back in ’06.
As a Circulation supervisor, I like to show by example. I hate the thought of being the sort of supervisor who doesn’t know what the work actually entails. I prefer to take part in the “menial” tasks from time to time (shelving, shelf reading, shifting, etc.), know what it involves, become familiar with the problem areas, then delegate tasks so that my student workers see how it’s done and learn to do it in the process. I’ve had a few great supervisors in academic libraries and some not so great ones when I was involved in teaching and tutoring. I hope to emulate the ones I liked and catch myself if I start to act like the others.
It always freaks people out when I head into the stacks to shelve, though I actually get a kick out of it… must be my weird desire to organize things. Plus, it’s a great workout for the arms 😀 .