Learning about learning – Week 2 – 504

I resisted this week’s readings and project because most of the times I have studied or been asked to study theories, I work to learn the information but when it comes to teacher in-service, there seems to be no execution on the part of leadership. It seemed when teachers teach other teachers they fail to address all the issues they would consider or be asked to consider were they teaching students. The concepts of teach, know and do resonate with me.

As much as I enjoyed reading and learning all that Ertmer and Newby had to offer, their article was written in 1993. Less than two percent of the courses in university curricula in the general area of educational technology emphasize “theory” as one of their key concepts (Ertmer & Newby, 1993, p. 52). There were many other bullet points that fell short of their target because of the date of the information presented. So much has occurred in my own life and in the way I learn and educate others. I would like to see data that is reflective of current trends before I get over-excited.

Surprise of all surprises, the readings and opinions of many I have read support my own beliefs that any and all means should be used to educate. If drill and practice works with the student, then I will be a behaviorist. If PBL works better, then I am a constructivist.

I must admit, I am not a fan of drill and practice software. I will use it with students and they will not know I dislike that part of our day; but I would prefer other means to educate. Working at a boarding school for students who learn differently makes one really aware of HOW you go about educating others, including those who do not have a learning difference. You educate that student by the learning plan in his or her folder. You use the methodologies all the teachers in this student’s world agreed would give that student the best chance for success.

It is not enough to just include technology in the modern classroom. Educational technologists are considered change agents and the focus of Educational Technology includes the possibility of effecting major changes in society by transforming educational systems and practices (Luppicini, 2005, p. 106). We should master all we can to insure learning is integrated, relevant and valuable to our learners.

I believe that is what will motivate me in this class. Now I have an opportunity to learn a variety of theories and history and meaning behind them. This can only offer me more tools in my teacher/administrator toolbox.

 

References:

Ertmer, P.A., & Newby, T.J. (1993). Behaviorism, cognitivism, constructivism: Comparing critical features from an instructional design perspective. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 6(4), 50-72.

Luppicini, R. (2005). A systems definition of educational technology in society. Educational Technology & Society, 8 (3), 103-109.

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