EDS 103 – Theories of Learning

Appreciate. Acknowledgement. Result.

reinforce

Raising a child in an environment wherein there is a permanent verbal acknowledgement of chores done and praises for doing them completely and correctly produces more positive outcome than negative outcome. Aside from developing good habits in a child, this also trains the parents not be whiners of their kids lack of natural inclination to help out at home but to react in a very appreciative manner regardless of how big or small the contribution was. Even this action can be considered an example of Law of Effect  – since you know that appreciations results to complete chores then what you’ll do is, consistently verbalized your appreciation so that more chores will be done.

As I was growing up, positive reinforcement was rarely practiced at home. What mostly happened was I had to mentally talk to myself, if don’t want to be scolded for the whole day or beaten for not doing my chores then I just have to finish all my chores before I get spotted, only now that I know that it’s an example of negative reinforcement. I don’t want to do it but it helped me avoided the painful consequences of not doing my chores.

Had I experience more positive reinforcements while growing up, would it be natural for me to give praises for good efforts? Would I not feel awkward verbalizing my appreciation whenever it’s necessary? I say thank you for those assistance I received, I know who has exceptionally done well and who has put in extra time to finish a task but to acknowledge them all verbally is something that is not innate in me.

EDS 103 – Theories of Learning

Did you ever ask yourself if you are intelligent? Would it mean the whole world to you if you have high IQ?

IQ

I don’t know about you but my answers to these questions are both big YES! I always felt that I have been surrounded by intelligent family members and I always wanted to be like them. At some point, I pretended I was. Sounds pathetic right? I know, good thing I have outgrown that already.

I feel good to know that I have mental strength to process information, make the most of that information, in the course of doing that, it enables me to adapt to my ever-changing environment and gather more information. It gives me the confidence that this intelligence helps me relate to others.

If I have a high IQ, who would I be? Will I be positively and deliberately contributing to my society? What is personal success for me?

It’s not anymore important if my IQ is high or low what matters most is what I do with it. For example, I own a small piece of land and that land has been producing very good crops compared to the other farms. Will I focus on selling the crops to earn money or will I devote time to make other farms yield good crops as well? Passing on to someone what we know may be the support and opportunity that they need to bring into surface more the ability that they have. And for me that is a personal success – positively and deliberately contributing to the society. How about you, how will you answer those questions?

Among the theories that I have studied in this module I would lean more on Multiple-Intelligence for the reason that it’s so specific and simplified. A parent or a personal tutor would not be at a loss as to what support and teaching style the child should get.

EDS 111 – Principles of Teaching

Reflection is thinking back to past meaningful events.

person reflection

Subconsciously I know that it has a purpose and a goal… well, I never really paid much attention to reflection before. I guess the reason behind that is it’s just so natural to my mind to reflect on past events, words and actions of a person.

One of the main matters of my previous job with a BPO company was to train their agents on Personality Profiling and eventually, master it. Personality types are Feeler, Thinker, Entertainer and Controller, after the training, I found out that my personality is a Thinker. Thinker, as defined by that training material is a person who wants details, who needs to know the step by step procedure of something, who instinctively analyze what is being said in a conversation not only in that exact moment but also moments after the conversation happened.

Knowing this gave me a better understanding why my mind has this natural inclination to think deeply about what I watched, heard, seen and felt. For me, it is the need to always understand the whys of the what.

However considering what was said in the material for The Reflective Teacher, my reflection would just fall under the characteristics of common sense view of reflection. Yes, I deeply want information for understanding but I don’t do anything after that.  And all new understandings I have after the reflection may just be considered self-indulgent speculations because they were not practiced, tested, evaluated for any better future use with the expectation of personal development.

Just like what Jenny Moon suggests, “Reflection is a form of mental processing that we use to fill a purpose or to achieve some anticipated outcome. It is applied to gain a better understanding of relatively complicated or unstructured ideas and is largely based on the reprocessing of knowledge, understanding and possibly, emotions that we already possess”.

With that in mind, I would not be surprised if my act of so-called “reflection” would just be considered as a meaningless, unproductive instinctive activity with no direction at all.

As I was going through my years in elementary and high school, as far as I can remember my teachers had the same style in teaching, they provided everything by speaking all the time, and it will just stop when it’s quiz time or exams day, this happened year after year. To be honest I never considered that they practiced reflection; I know this may be a harsh thought and could be very judgmental. But there was no change in their teaching style even though many of the students were not paying attention either by talking, sleeping or stepping out of the classroom very often in a class. Or even when attendance in a class had gone down.

There was an instance in our Math class that right after my teacher stepped out of the classroom I asked my seatmate to explain what was discussed, and she said she did not understand it, so I asked my classmate seating behind me if he could explain to me the discussion and he said, he and the person seating beside him did not understand the explanation too. As I looked at my other classmates I saw the puzzled look on their faces, so I went home feeling unconcerned and satisfied, thinking that if there’ll be a quiz the next day at least I won’t be the only one who would fail. I know that it was very irresponsible of me, to say the least. But my point here is, I don’t think that is a learning environment of a reflective teaching.

It was truly a surprise to me to know reflective teaching, even when I look back in my college life which was full of lawyer professors, former radio disc jockey professor who used green jokes as a warm up, a professor who nags the class for almost half of the class time, an egotistic son of a stockholder professor who rarely got in on time for his class. My list could go on and on with regard to the teaching style and environment I experienced.

Or maybe this is just an assumption on my part that they did not practice reflective teaching just because my experience did not seem perfect to me and not even close to ideal. I guess I would never know since I did not interview them and I don’t know where they are right now.

One more thing, maybe what they missed to do was critical reflection; they might have overlooked the need to use some of the reflective lenses. Which would have given them different angles of information, different interpretation, and possible alternate actions to the situation. They could have pondered on their teaching style and its effects on their students but missed to be critical to their ideas/assumptions.

References: Teaching in Lifelong Learning Sector: “The reflective Teacher p8”; Jenny Moon (Moon 2005: 1); Becoming Critically Reflective p28.

 

EDS 103 – Theories on Learning

Thoughts on Learning

diverse

As I go through all the readings for Module 1 it occurs to me that there are several explanations of learning that are connected.

I’ll start with Nurture and Non-Formal, both of these have the element of learning with the help of family or anyone who closely live with them.  As a person stays to live closely with these people, for example, the Nurture and Non-Formal learning will continue to cause a permanent change in his behavior which is an indication that he has learned. However, both Nurture and Non-Formal Learning can be also considered external factors, and at some point may also be called as life experiences. In connection with that, this person will have more learned behaviors than unlearned behaviors due to the fact there is much opportunity for him to observe and absorb his environment.

“Learning can be defined as the relatively permanent change in an individual’s behavior or behavior potential (or capability) as a result of experience or practice.” (Huitt, 2011)

“Learning is an enduring change in behavior, or in the capacity to behave in a given fashion, which results from practice or other forms of experience” (Schunk, 2012, p. 3).

Prior to this study, I was not aware that when a person has learned something a change of behavior takes place. I just thought that learning is just acquired facts that a person may or may not need in order to exist and live. All the study, tasks and other activities in school made me overlooked the complexity of learning.

As I write this journal I have come to a realization that learning is also undeviating. Whatever happens, whether the information came through formal education, life experience, maturation and etc. there’ll always be a permanent and life enduring change, therefore a person will always learn however and in whatever way.

Even now as I share my simple thoughts in this journal there is a consciousness in me that I have learned while studying what learning is all about.

Thinking back to the days when I was still a student I believe, that nurture has more effect on me than formal learning. Though there were more materials open for study in the school and teachers are very helpful and accommodating, the lessons would just make complete sense once my mother or my sisters explained it to me. Definitely, their teaching approach is not structured but very effective. I think the reason why parents, siblings and other people who have closely lived with us can be the agent of nurture is because of the bond, feeling of at ease and their natural knowledge of how we understand things.

I believe that is the reason why it’s difficult to be a Sunday School teacher because I’m trying to impart knowledge at the same time practice the concept of nurture to young people because that’s how I learned best (not to mention I don’t have a formal teaching training).  And though this is difficult I still want to continue, I want to be a teacher that they could remember even years after they have graduated from my class. What I teach is a practical application of their personal faith with Jesus Christ. I feel that if I don’t include nurturing in my informal teaching style then they will lose the importance of what I’m teaching.

Now to address the question, why do some people learn better than me and I better than others could be a tricky one. But just to be on the safe side, this is dependent on the combination of nurture, teaching style he or she received in school (is that matching his or her learning style), hereditary factors, life experiences and also one’s willingness and determination to realize his or her full potential.

  1. Reference:
    Huitt, W. (2011) http://www.edpsycinteractive.org/topics/intro/whyedpsy.html

EDS 111 – Principles of Teaching

study habits

Just A Start

 

I have nothing profound to note yet in this journal. What I mostly experienced in the past days were more on self-realization of how average my reading skill is and how I should clearly and quickly comprehend the materials I read.

When I was going through the introduction part of the study, it made me feel a little bit nervous. It has been a long time since I graduated from college and the last time a studied hard was during my training days with my employer. I remembered the study-style I had way back in college then I questioned myself, is that good enough for this study? After that, I remembered that I did well on my last training, considering that it was also designed like an online distant study, with that I felt calm and somehow encouraged.

I know that this type of study requires much from me like time management, study habits, determination and etc. but one thing that I should not forget is to have fun, enjoy what I’m doing. Be an open person to learn different ideas and not be afraid to unlearn unnecessary practice or knowledge,  try new ideas and practice them without hesitations.