WEEK 6 [ Monday Group "Okay to go."] - GNA GNA Jul 1, 2009

[ Thursday Group: You get fire works too! - GNA GNA Jul 2, 2009]




WRITE: If you would like to get ahead for our final class you should:
  1. Answer the question, "How do people learn?" in a paragraph of no more than 100 words [bring a paper copy to class]
  2. Respond to these two prompts, "Teaching is like..." and "Learning is like..."
  3. Type up the strongest sections of your handwritten T2P essays into a single document [bring originals to class]

READ: A completely elective, and profoundly thought-provoking, chapter about teacher beliefs and values. As you work on developing an articulate philosophy of education, this reading may be of some assistance.

Yero, J. L. (2002). Teaching In Mind: How Teacher Thinking Shapes Education. Hamilton, MT: MindFlight Publishing.

OMG IT'S... WEEK 5 [As Sponge Bob says, "I'm reeehdeee...." - GNA GNA Jun 24, 2009]

READ1 [~30 minutes ]: Check your group's page on this wiki for your reading assignments. (Monday Group is posted. Thursday Group reading assignments will be posted after class on Thursday).



1. Briefly respond to the questions (including your responses to this section in with your written work is not mandatory): What is the most important point/theme/concept/advice/etc. regarding student learning you took away from the reading? AND How does your most important take-away concept about student learning relate to teaching and learning within your discipline? AND How does your most important take-away concept about student learning relate towhat you have learned so far in our class?

2. Now, imagine a scenario in your future classroom where you may “find a problem” dealing with your most important take-away from the reading (including your responses to this section in with your written work is not mandatory):
  1. Who is involved?
  2. What do they do?
  3. To whom or what do they do it?
  4. When?
  5. Where?
  6. How?
  7. Why?

WRITE [~60 minutes ]: Prepare a case study, no longer than one page. Make your case as detailed as possible, but focus on your most important point related to student learning. Refrain from directly identifying the problem and/or any possible solutions in your case. In other words, don’t solve the case, build it! Consider using the Teacher Problem Finding model we covered in class to scaffold your case. [Note: We will employ it in class as a framework for analyzing the cases.]

Example I: See page 178 of your text for two simple, yet adequately descriptive case studies. [EX. MOST IMPORTANT CONCEPT CASE 1 = LEARNED HELPLESSNESS; CASE 2 = INTRINSIC MOTIVATION]

Example II: “What’s the big problema?” [We worked on this one in class. EX. MOST IMPORTANT CONCEPT = ETHNIC/CULTURAL IDENTITY DEVELOPMENT]

Example III : “Something Queer Going Down at Hartford Middle School” [EX. MOST IMPORTANT POINT = BUILDING A POSITIVE LEARNING ENVIRONMENT]

"Q & A in full BLOOM"

1. Read your chapter noting all of the key points/themes/concepts/etc. Reflect on what you believe to be most relevant and applicable to your work as a teacher.

2. Pretend you are outlining the chapter as if you are preparing a lesson on the material covered in the text. Create a robust list of the most important points you have taken from the reading. Your list should be thorough, however no longer than one page in length.

3. Examine and become familiar with Bloom’s Taxonomy (see diagram below).

4. Using your list of key concepts from the text as a starting point and Bloom’s Taxonomy as a guide, prepare six
questions and answers you would include on a test covering what you have determined to be the most relevant material presented in the reading. [Note: Your answers should be ones you would give full credit to; in other words, A+ answers.]

WRITE [~60 minutes ]:

  • Two of your questions (labeled Q1, Q2) should fall within Bloom’s first two levels (Knowledge and Comprehension).
  • Two of your questions (Q3, Q4) should fall within the second two levels (Application and Analysis).
  • One of your questions (Q5) should fall within either the Synthesis or Evaluation levels. [Here are some examples of questions at these levels.

  • One of your questions (Q6) should be related to your subject area (read: discipline). Feel free to be somewhat random here e.g. A Biology teacher might ask: “How many bones are there in the human body?” or an English teacher might ask: “What is the definition of foreshadowing?” Q6 will most likely be a Knowledge question anyone might know the answer to—think Trivial Pursuit or Jeopardy.

Two additional resources which can help with interpreting and applying Bloom’s Taxonomy are: Resource 1 and Resource 2

external image Bloom%27s_Rose.png

WEEK 4[Complete this scholarly task. Bring your written work to class with you.]

- GNA GNA Jun 17, 2009Good to go for Monday Group. Thursday Group good to go. - GNA GNA Jun 19, 2009

READ1 [~20 minutes ]: Chapter 2 of our textbook:Coming to a Critical Constructivism: Roots and Branches, p. 13-32. Pay specific attention to the various developmental and learning theories discussed/presented including:
  • Jean Piaget, Stages of Cognitive Development
  • Lev Vygotsky, Socio-cultural Theory of Development
  • Paulo Freire, Critical Pedagogy [see also Henry Giroux, bell hooks, Peter McLaren, & Jeff Andrade]

MONDAY GROUP ONLY: RE-VIEW [~30 minutes]: "Monday Group: TV Time" videos. Here is the YouTube playlist [Note: I left the videos untagged, thus they will not come up in the search engines. However, if you do not want to be on YouTube, let me know immediately and I will take the videos off and/or make them private.] Pay specific attention to the various developmental and learning theories discussed/presented including:

  • Jean Piaget, Stages of Cognitive Development
  • Sigmund Freud, Psychosexual Development
  • Carol Gilligan, Ethic of Care (moral development)
  • Urie Bronfenbrenner, Ecological Systems Theory
  • Abraham Maslow, Hierarchy of Needs
  • Erik Erikson, Stages of Psychosocial Development
  • Albert Bandura, Social Cognitive Theory

THURSDAY GROUP ONLY: RE-VIEW [~30 minutes]: "Thursday Group: TV Time" videos. Here is the YouTube playlist [Note: I left the videos untagged, thus they will not come up in the search engines. However, if you do not want to be on YouTube, let me know immediately and I will take the videos off and/or make them private.] Pay specific attention to the various developmental and learning theories discussed/presented including:

  • Urie Bronfenbrenner, Ecological Systems Theory
  • Abraham Maslow, Hierarchy of Needs
  • Erik Erikson, Stages of Psychosocial Development
  • Lev Vygotzsky, Social Development Theory
  • Larry Kohlberg, Theory of Moral Development


READ2 [~10 minutes]: Jerrid Kruse's blog post on: "How People Learn: Using learning theory to inform instruction"
READ2 [~20 minutes]: George Siemens' essay on "Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age"
READ2 [~30-40 minutes]: John Seely Brown, Allan Collins and Paul Duguid. "Situated Cognition and the Culture of Learning." Educational Researcher; v18 n1, pp. 32-42, Jan-Feb 1989.

WRITE [~60 minutes]: This week's scholarly task calls you to demonstrate your increasing agility and proficiency in critically engaging with a vast body of teaching and learning theory. You will do this by examining at least two learning theories and applying them to (1) key concepts we've covered thus far, and (2) your area of concentration. Your artifact may take the form of a robust outline, spreadsheet, concept map(s), enumerated list, a narrative, or a response using technology (audio or video).

Step one: Compare and contrast the viewpoints of one (or more if you like) theorist covered in this week's READ1 and/or RE-VIEW video with the viewpoints of one of the READ2 authors (Kruse, Siemens, or Brown, Collins, & Duguid). You will compare and contrast the scholars' viewpoints in five specific areas.

  1. How do the scholars define learning?
  2. How do the scholars view the role of the teacher/educator within the act of teaching-learning?
  3. How do the scholars view the role of the student/learner within the act of teaching-learning?
  4. What is (or how do you imagine) the scholars' position on KEY TERM #1 (you pick one key term from the list below)?
  5. What is (or how do you imagine) the scholars' position on KEY TERM #2 (you pick a second key term from the list below)?

Key Terms & Concepts

  • mutual enhancement
  • "hot cognition"
  • intrinsic and extrinsic motivation
  • affective domain
  • social justice pedagogy
  • Putnam's concept of "bridging" (from Thursday Group "TV Time")
  • relevance of youth popular culture
  • culture class between youth & adults (from Thursday Group "TV Time")
  • bullying (from Monday Group & Thursday Group "TV Time")
  • cooperative learning
  • role of technology in learning (from Monday Group "TV Time")
  • role of technology (i.e. YouTube "diaries") in young folks' identity development (from Thursday Group "TV Time")
  • emotional intelligence (EQ)
  • constructivism
  • OTHER (YOU PICK other terms/concepts we've covered in class thus far)

An abbreviated example of the spreadsheet approach:

Paulo Freire (Theorist 1 from READ1)
George Siemens (Theorist 2 from READ2)
Def. of learning
Role of teacher
Teacher as facilitator, director of dialog, sage, "turn on lights"
one who guides learners towards understanding how to find and navigate information via technology, bridge builder between student and information
Role of student
Key term #1: Relevance of youth popular culture
Freire would say you could not separate youth from their culture because they are bound up inside of it
Key term #2: Role of technology in learning
technology is of supreme importance in learning, it serves as the primary mediator between the learner and what lies beyond, technology takes on the role of co-learner

Step two: Apply theory to practice. Check out this list of "100 (un)likely problems" teachers may encounter. Last year's TCPCGers and I created it. Select two "problems" from the list (or imagine your own domain-specific i.e., content-related conundrum) to anchor your two speculations. Next, put on your theorist's hats (Freire or Siemens, in the case of my example), and complete the T2P worksheet using his or her theoretical framework to guide the "because..." portion of your speculations. Lastly, imagine how you would address the "problem" in your practice through your response to the "A Specific Application..." section of the T2P worksheet.

An abbreviated example of T2P:

students spend much of their out-of-school time interacting with technology (the "problem")
they will learn about and through technology in ways relevant to meeting their own goals
according to Siemens the landscape of learning has changed dramatically to one where the learner is no longer the center of the learning; the way the learner engages with technology is primary therefore if educators employ technology it must be in ways relevant to learners--guided by learners goals.
In teaching anthropology, I always offer students the option to engage with technology at their own pace. The anthropologist is the main "tool" of inquiry, however using technology to display and share information with others can potentially increase the value of one's work to others. ETC...

WEEK 3 [Completing this scholarly task in the order presented is vital to your building habits of mind and practice as teacher-learner-scholar-researchers. Bring all evidence of your work on this task to class with you including notes, scribbles, and final artifact.]

- GNA GNA Jun 10, 2009 Godspeed. As Hans Solo said, "You're all clear kid!"

VIEW [~40 minutes including Step One below]: Watch and listen to these young people report on their lives (via a YouTube playlist, "Voices of Youth Today). Pick at least three young people (or groups, depending on the story) as the subject(s) for this week's scholarly task. [Note: Feel free to select more if it suits your fancy.]

You will soon be educators working with young people (like this week's research subjects) in our schools. You undoubtedly want to understand how they view the world and themselves in it; thus, you will want to plan relevant teaching and learning encounters that stimulate their intellectual involvement with your subject matter and attend to their social and emotional needs. Working to gain a sense of their perspectives, how they portray themselves, and how they talk about the world around them, will provide you insights into where they reside developmentally so you can prepare to meet them there.

Your task, using a modified grounded theory approach (i.e., a theory that is built from the data), is to present at least three data-driven speculations about the developmental stage/epoch/moment of your selected subject(s).

Step One: Collect and record your data. Including brief quotations and/or paraphrases to depict how the young people view themselves will help you keep track of themes as they unveil themselves through your data. One approach is to create a table to record your observations (below you will find a sample). A more traditional grounded theory approach is to "memo" about each data source. Remain flexible in your approach to recording your data and a story will begin to unfold as you note themes and trends (see below).

Video 1 (student protesters)
Video 2 (emo kids)
Demographic information
various HS; boys and girls; mostly Caucasian; (etc...)
various HS; boys and girls; students of color; (etc...)
Depictions of self
concerned citizens; well-organized; politically minded; reflective; want to have freedom (etc...)
emo kids do not want to be labeled; emo kids labeled "cutters" by peers; into music; "emotional;" (etc...)
Ethnic/cultural identity
not an expressed concern; (etc...)
appears that subculture overrides ethnic identity (?); culture associated w/ music and clothes, not ethnicity (?); (etc...)
Self in relation to peers/peer groups

Step Two [~20 minutes]: Look for themes and trends in your data. For example, above I began to note that these youth were actively resisting being labeled or told what to do by authorities. Draft your three data-driven speculations about the developmental stage/epoch/moment of your selected subject(s).

READ1 [~40 minutes not including READ2 below]: Chapter 7 of our textbook:Your Best Friend or Worse Enemy: Youth Popular Culture, Pedagogy, and Curriculum in Urban Classrooms, p. 113-143.

READ2 [OPTIONAL]: "The Overconnecteds"

Step Three [~10 minutes]: Revise your speculations. Make adaptations/modifications to your speculations as necessary based on your reading of Jeff Andrade's piece (READ1) and the optional text, "The Overconnecteds". Be specific as you cite evidence from the text that supports your adaptations/modifications.

WRITE [~40 minutes]: Your final artifact should be divided into three sections, one for each speculation. It should take the form of a robust outline and include:
  1. Speculation (one or two sentences) Ex. Adolescents demand increasing autonomy as they move into their late teens. They desire to be autonomous; while becoming more connected with their peer groups.
  2. Three pieces of evidence from the data (youth voices) to support your speculation; in other words answer, "What did the young people say or do that lead me to speculate?" Ex. See above chart highlighted in red.
  3. Evidence from the readings you used to inform your speculation (as necessary) Ex. Andrade discusses critical youth literacies as being of value to pedagogues and as ways for youth to resist against hegemonic practices within schools. Taken to a broader level, the students involved in the protest and those in the "emo kids" video, testify to young peoples' resistance to what they perceive as dominance. Both groups voiced and acted out their desires to be unique and autonomous.
  4. The type(s) of development your speculation evidences (e.g., psychological, sociocultural, ethnic/cultural, gender, moral, physiological/sexual, cognitive/intellectual, emotional/affective) Ex. My speculation focuses primarily on individual psychological development of teens however, I believe development always happens within a greater sociocultural context, thus I believe my speculation also evidences sociocultural development.
  5. Two recommendations for practice within your subject area; in other words answer, "How can I apply what I've learned about my research subjects to my pedagogical practice in a way that would attend to my instructional goals; while at the same time meet students where they are developmentally?" Ex. My area of expertise is anthropology. To apply theory to practice I would recommend educators to (1) guide students towards understanding a broader definition of culture (as suggested by Andrade) and (2) capitalize on the current passions of students as fodder for discussion, research, projects, classwork, readings, etc. I would do this by asking them to create a huge group collage on the wall of our classroom. The collage would depict their shared and unique interests while serving me as a gorgeous reminder of where their interests lie.

WEEK 2 [Complete this scholarly task. Bring your typed letter to class with you.]

- GNA GNA Jun 3, 2009 Godspeed. - GNA GNA Jun 5, 2009 Good to go for Thursday group too. Party on!

READ1: Chapter 9 of our textbook: Affective and Motivational Factors for Learning and Achievement, p. 163-183.

READ2: I recently received a letter from a high school teacher in France, Mme. Culnu. She has a North American, English as a first language, exchange student in her class. She believes he is no longer motivated to learn french. Mme. Culnu asked for our advice. Here is her letter.

WRITE: Your task for this week is to craft a letter responding to Mme. Culnu's call for assistance. Your letter should have the form and function of a letter to a colleague. It should weave together your individual take on the scenario she's presented with what you will have gathered from your scholarly investigations on motivation. For the purposes of this scholarly task, your letter should contain all of the following attributes:
  1. A summary of motivation as it relates to teaching and learning and interpreted by and through your own thoughts and feelings about motivation (cite this week's reading). One possible approach: "What I know about motivation based on my own experience in conjunction with (and/or deviating from) our studies is..."
  2. At least two online resources you believe to be credible. Both resources must guide Mme. Culnu to learn about motivating students in general, for example, or students within a specific demographic (i.e., high school aged youth, boys, second language learners, exchange students, students with exceptionalities, etc.). One resource should be a scholarly article; empirical or qualitative in nature. For both resources, include citations along with links, a description of the resources, and most importantly incorporate them into your letter and evidence how they relate to Mme. Culnu's concerns.
  3. A speculation which presents an alternate interpretation of the "problem" Mme. Culnu has encountered with her student. In other words, beyond issues of motivation, what can you speculate to be the student's "problem"? Ground your speculation in your personal theories (like we did during Week 1) and/or references to any relevant learning theories/concepts you have made sense of thus far in your studies of teaching and learning (from our class or otherwise).
  4. A bit of inspiration; explore the six texts below which represent a wide range of perspectives on motivation. Select at least one (or identify your own alternative to include) and make sense of it within the context of your letter to Mme. Culnu. An alternative approach would be to use one of the six texts (or your alternative) as an anchor for the letter. For example, "Dear Mme. Culnu, Reading your letter reminded me of a poem by ... It relates to the issue you are facing because ..." If you select an alternative text, please provide a citation including a link if you find it online.

EXPLORE: The six texts below represent a wide range of perspectives on motivation.

#1 Matt Groening "Life in Hell" art

#2 Students in Angola go back to school (Fink, 1997)

#3 Poem by Franz Wright (2009)

#4 Coach John Wooden's Pyramid of Success

#5 "The Ave" by Blue Scholars

#6 Radical Art (artist unknown)

WEEK 1 [Complete these scholarly tasks to prepare for our first meeting. Bring your work to class with you.]

  1. ACQUIRE COURSE TEXT: Goodman, G. S. (Ed.). (2008). Educational psychology: An application of critical constructivism. New York: Peter Lang.
  2. READ: Forward and Introduction, p. ix - xvii (¶ 1); Chapter 12: Challenging the Dominant Discourse,// p. 237-255. Here's a photocopy of the first reading to get you started.
  3. WATCH: Dr. Sugata Mitra's video (posted below). Consider his ideas about "Minimally Invasive Education" via his "Hole in the Wall" research.
  4. WRITE: See this attachment for detailed instructions on this week's scholarly tasks.
  5. Finally, complete this attached learning style preferences survey. Note: the Excel workbook has several separate spreadsheets. The spreadsheets are linked together and will automatically fill-in as you answer the questions. Print out the sheet titled "Styles Graph" and your response to this week's scholarly tasks. Bring both to our first class meeting.