Learning Experiences

Question 1; Describe in 4-5 sentences a memory you recall from when you were learning something in elementary or middle school.

  • What was the topic you were learning in elementary or middle school?
  • Who was teaching you this topic in elementary or middle school?
  • How did you learn the information?
  • What type of information/skill were you learning? For example, was it information/content, such as history, or company policies, or was it a skill, such as using Microsoft Word?
  • Why were you learning the information or skill?

The class was seventh grade Social Studies, taught by Mr. Freud. He was the 7th grade Social Studies teacher in junior high school. The lesson was “The Middle Ages”. We were learning about the culture and facts in medieval times. We did one of two activities. We read aloud from our history books or read aloud from the information on the film strips. A student was able to read until he or she made a mistake, then the next student had a turn. At the end of the week, there was usually a test or quiz.  

Behaviorism:

This lesson is based in behaviorism. A student wanted to read. A student could read until he or hse made a mistake. Kind of Pavlovian. 

Constructivism:

The Medieval Times in a constructivist lesson will be steeped in a student making his or her products of the middle ages. For example, after students gather knowledge from internet research, students can make paper from papyrus, students can write a puppet play using the English language of the time, make a sundial, Students can answer research questions, such as: 
1. Why did barbers perform surgery? 
2. What is the timeline of the plow and the horseshoe? 
3. Why did last names come from occupations?

Website: https://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/lesson156.shtml

Cognitivism

The teacher would plan and prepare materials for students on Medieval Times. The teacher would have clear results as to what needs to be achieved for the medieval lessons. The teacher would be activating students’ prior knowledge. One specific example of how the cognitivist approach could be beneficial to students would be building on the students’ knowledge of other cultures (students have already covered Ancient Egypt, Ancient China, and Ancient Rome). Students could build on basic cultural principles that are common to both time periods. Students learn how to build a medieval village, based on the knowledge of their Egyptian diorama and build on that knowledge to prove increasingly complex societies. 

Connectivism

Students in a connectivist classroom could learn about the middle ages by using the internet to debunk the statement that the middle ages were a period of darkness without innovation and creativity.

Andragogy:


Question 2: Describe in 4-5 sentences a memory you recall from when you were learning something in high school or college.

  • What was the topic you were learning in high school or college?
  • Who was teaching you this topic in high school or college?
  • How did you learn the information?
  • What type of information/skill were you learning? For example, was it information/content, such as history, or company policies, or was it a skill, such as using Microsoft Word?
  • Why were you learning the information or skill? 

Behaviorism: Here are some ideas for a behaviorist version of the Scarlet Letter lesson plan. 
Students complete a KWL chart (Know-Want to Know-Learned).
Vocabulary Words: (teacher pulls out vocabulary words)

Direct Instruction/Instructional Input
Whole class discussion: Ask students to describe the relationship of the two main characters.
Record the ideas on the board.
Paired Share: With an elbow partner, students share experiences of times when they feel like they “stood out” from the crowd. 

Constructivism: Consider the modern phenomenon of shaming. We see it every day on the news, political, celebrities, and people in our neighborhoods. On social media alone, there are many examples of people shamed for one thing or another. Compare a modern shaming to Hester’s ordeal. 

Role-playing characters from the Scarlet Letter would be an example of problem-solving constructivism. In addition, learning-based scenarios can be used for role-playing in an online environment,

Cognitivism:

The teacher would plan and prepare materials for students on Scarlet Letter. The teacher could ask students to do some internet research or watch one of the many versions of the movie. The teacher would have clear results as to what needs to be achieved for the Scarlet Letter unit. The teacher would be activating students’ prior knowledge. One specific example of how the cognitivist approach could be beneficial to students would be building on the students’ knowledge of other books in that same time period, such as The Crucible. 

Connectivism:

Andragogy:

The class was HS English (Junior) and the book was the Scarlet Letter. The teacher was one of the English teachers at the HS. We needed to read chapters of the book for homework and come to class the next day, ready for a discussion. The discussion topic was started by the teacher. All students were expected to participate. At the end of the book, students did an oral book report dressed as one of the characters (YIKES). The other book that we read was The Crucible. It had the same general historical period and place, 17th century New England. 

Question 3: Describe in 4-5 sentences a memory you recall from when you were learning in a professional formal (non-school) setting (first job, current career, etc.).

  • What was the topic you were learning in a professional setting?
  • Who was teaching you this topic in a professional setting?
  • How did you learn the information?
  • What type of information/skill were you learning? For example, was it information/content, such as history, or company policies, or was it a skill, such as using Microsoft Word?
  • Why were you learning the information or skill?

As a public school teacher and administrator, there have been so many professional development sessions, but one that stands out was concerning the Massachusetts Educcator Evaluation System. 

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts implemented an educator evaluation system. It was a “heavy lift” for every district in the Commonwealth. It had multiple parts that needed to be rolled out over the course of five years. 

The first professional development that we had about the new educator evaluation system was during the summer of 2005. We hired a consultant to “walk us through” the new system. The Massachusetts Department of Education (MASS DOE) literally had just finished putting the training material online the week before out training. The consultant did not have much time to prepare a professional development session.

She printed each member of the administrative team a three-ring binder with the training materials. For the majority of two days, she read the training materials to us. We did a few role-playing exercises.