Eric R.R. Weaver

Teaching Philosophy

Mr. Weaver's teaching has evolved from his experiences with his son; openly sharing his experiences, and coming to understand them better through discussions. Similarly stories of your own experiences can enhance our learning together, as we are all unique. Thus, Mr. Weaver encourages the open listening, understanding, and sharing of all our experiences as is commonly found in all of his "Flipped Service-Learning courses." Flipped refers to a reversed classroom, where the lectures are reviewed by students at home individually, and the assignments are done collectively in the classroom. He will always have class projects to bring in Service-Learning aspects which benefitted his children and complete several team building exercises allowing students to directly experience the benefits of working together and supporting team efforts.

Experience teaching have been primarily with graduate students and Honor Students. All TA assignments have required students to research, write, and justify ideas in 6000 level or higher graduate courses. Thus, 99% of Mr. Weavers TA employment was with online students, however, 99% of his experience learning was the direct personal interactions with students. As a non-traditional student, beginning his third career, he learned how to teach at USF from these direct experiences with students as a parent, volunteer, mentor and Scout Leader; not from books, lectures, or training. This has lead to his teaching being based on creating student projects; some started very simple with high school kids who wanted to build their first website: for the Anchin Center, others involved faculty and grants exploring community development. All his own courses will begin with defining a project or problem that student teams can undertake. Related research will be required, graded papers and online quizzes engage student understanding on the issues involved. The Flipped perspective opens the door for a great many opportunities which come from both the students in the course and the community: like at the Church. The Service-Learning aspect allows the students to engage the projects directly. Thus, Mr. Weaver will always try to shift his courses to the Flipped Service-Learning model which can be challenging and functional in any disciplines.

Beyond the classroom, it is his parenting experiences that defines Mr. Weaver's principals and philosophy of teaching. His last few years at USF, earning a Doctorate in Civil Engineering in May 2017, has demonstrated how his teaching philosophy reflects his previous experiences raising his children. His first child is now a married public school teacher doing the International Baccalaureate Primary Year Program at Roland Park Elementary School. His second child is an Architecture MS teaching assistant now with a full scholarship at MIT. Mr. Weaver is very proud of his children's success as they both became USF Alumni at age 5. They began at the USF child center to become Honor Roll students throughout their education. Mr. Weaver was the founding Project Director for STARS USA Inc. where all the lessons were shared together as "experiential project based learning." Project-Based Instruction was how they washed dishes, rode bikes, visited art shows, and completed Boy Scouts in their home. Yes, both his son and daughter were Boy Scouts with him! Thus, all Mr. Weaver intends to teach is the task development and completion skills that made his own children so successful. In fact, he was not even sure what or how he needed to teach until his son's recent graduation, where he too decided to teach after realizing how much he enjoyed supporting peers who often sought insight on getting tasks done as exemplified in Service-Learning.