Creativity in Pedagogy: Explaining the Middle Ages, Engaging Students Roundtable

Sponsored by the Ibero-Medieval Association of North America

Teaching the Middle Ages involves overcoming a series of hurdles. Not only are negative stereotypes of the Middle Ages prominent in the mass media nowadays, but also students may initially find little value in a distant past that saw very different living conditions to the current ones marked by ongoing technological and medical advances, consumption, and materialism. In stark contrast, representations of medieval scenarios in the popular culture attract a vast audience nowadays. In this session, presenters are invited to explore practical ways to introduce students to this time period, to engage them in the analysis of medieval cultures, and/or to reflect critically and from a pedagogical perspective on topics such as:

  • Why do certain medieval topics and types (i.e. the Arthurian world, heroes such as Prince Valiant, Spanish convivencia, etc.) exert such a degree of fascination in popular culture?
  • What is the value of medieval studies and disciplines today? How can they be integrated into more comprehensive programs, such as a B.A. in Spanish?
  • What resources are more successful in the classroom? Or, in other words, what are examples of effective (interdisciplinary) approaches to medieval texts in the classroom that engage students and facilitate the achievement of specific educational objectives?
  • What materials for the teaching of the Middle Ages are still missing?

If you would like to submit a proposal for this session, please use the Symposium's Call for Papers link. Proposals are due December 31, 2017.

Please direct questions to the roundtable organizers:

Denise K. Filios (University of Iowa)

Ana M. Montero (Saint Louis University)