FOUR STATES RELATED TO LEARNING • New • Consolidated • Treading Water • Drowning
KNOWLEDGE • Is relatively self-contained • Is agreed and verifiable • Is ‘on’ or ‘off’ • Is continually increasing
Essential knowledge • The monarchy in Thailand is held in high esteem by the majority of Thai people.
Essential knowledge • Paris is the capital of France.
Motivational - (Gee Whizz!) • The average bee produces one twelfth of a teaspoon of honey in its lifetime. (Horizons, March 2003)
Motivational - (Gee Whizz!) • Henry David Thoreau once burnt down 300 acres of forest trying to cook a fish he had caught for supper. (The Times, 17 April 2003)
Transformational • The annual budget of the Afghan government is around $460m – about one half of the monthly US military spend in Afghanistan. (The Guardian, 18 March)
Transformational • The average sale price of a house in Detroit is $7100.00. Wall Street Journal, September 2009
Can we identify knowledge that is…. Essential…Motivational…Transformational
SKILLS • Are active • Have to be encountered in practice • Change from beginning...through developing...through mastering • Are surprisingly stable
Only Understanding? While teaching for understanding is a vital aim of schooling it is only one of many. We are thus not suggesting here that all teaching be geared at all times towards deep and sophisticated understanding. Clearly, there are circumstances when this depth is neither feasible nor desirable. Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe, ‘Understanding by Design’
‘Why have I recorded the Goldberg Variations again after 20 years? Andreas Schiff, pianist, 2003 I think I understand it a little better now.’
What do you think of the Chinese invasion of Tibet? It’s too soon to tell. The Dalai Lama
‘The ability to generate a novel and philosophical idea is something one labours at over a lifetime.’ Colin McGinn, Professor of Philosophy, Rutgers University. In Prospect magazine, November 2003
The pre-frontal cortex The pre-frontal cortex is where our most complex thinking takes place. Recent evidence tells us that the pre-frontal cortex doesn’t mature until somewhere between 18 and 23 years of age.
Slow Thinking ‘...what is required for optimal cognition is a fluid balance between modes of mind that are effortful, purposeful, detailed and explicit on the one hand and those that are playful, patient and implicit on the other. We need to be able to generate ideas, and also to evaluate them. Guy Claxton, Hare Brain, Tortoise Mind, 1997
UNDERSTANDING • Important - but • Complex • Fleeting • Unpredictable • Inconsistent
What is the relationship between knowledge, skills and understanding?
Is there any learning going on? Is the learning appropriate? Is the learning sufficient? How is the context helping the learning? How is the context hindering the learning?
History - SLT Battle of Hastings Dr Robinson – “I am learning what a shield wall is” Ms Northey – “I did do this last year but I had forgotten about the HusCarls” Mrs Williams – “I learned all about 1066 last year” Mr Dunster – “I thought William was the Prince nowadays – now I’m really confused” Mr Macrae – “I like to examine sources of evidence. I have practised comparing them today” Mrs Dolan – “I am learning how to examine maps to understand positioning” Mr Lowde – “I feel I understand why nuclear deterrent is favoured by politicians”
‘The view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects the way you live your life.’ Carol Dweck, ‘Mindset’ 2006
‘Believing that your qualities are carved in stone - the fixed mindset - creates an urgency to prove yourself over and over. Every situation is evaluated: Will I succeed or fail? Will I look smart or dumb? Will I be accepted or rejected? Will I feel like a winner or a loser’ Carol Dweck, ‘Mindset’ 2006
‘The growth mindset is based on the belief that your basic qualities are things that you can cultivate through your efforts. You can see how this believe creates a passion for learning. Why hide deficiencies instead of overcoming them? Why seek out the tried and true instead of experiences that will challenge you? Why look for friends who will shore up your self-esteem instead of ones who will also challenge you?’ Carol Dweck, ‘Mindset’ 2006
‘The research suggests that once a musician has enough ability to get into a top music school, the thing that distinguishes one performer from another is how hard he or she works. That’s it.’ Malcolm Gladwell, ‘Outliers, The Story of Success’ 2008
‘Practice isn’t the thing you do once you are good. It’s the thing you do that makes you good.’ Malcolm Gladwell, ‘Outliers, The Story of Success’ 2008
FOUR KINDS OF DIFFERENTIATION • Learning styles • Multiple Intelligences • Developmentally appropriate tasks • Feedback
According to multiple intelligence theory, there are nine basic types of intelligence. Visual-spatial Verbal-linguistic Logical-mathematical Bodily-kinesthetic Musical-rhythmic Interpersonal Intrapersonal Naturalistic Existential