Becoming W10: Writing Retreat:

·        Creating a space to think, write and think again

·        Tackling our resistance to writing

·        Supporting ‘writing to learn’


Becoming an Educationalist is an extremely intensive course designed to occupy four hours of class time per week plus an additional five or six hours of independent study. The Writing and other tasks that we set are an essential part of your engagement with the ideas and practices of the course. They are designed to promote active learning and critical thinking through writing and other processes.


This week we are having a Writing Retreat where we will engage in real writing to learn – to experience what it is like to make time to write. To write!! To make time to get some writing done.

Overarching tasks – that need to happen every week without reminding:

  • Revision of notes – clear identification of names, theories, concepts and ideas
  • Follow up on the names, theories, concepts and ideas. Do some talking, reading, thinking, writing. Tip: production of personal subject dictionary
  • Reflective learning log – preferably as a blog
  • Review of Becoming blog – contribute a Comment to the blog, adding your blog url
  • All writing tasks set in the Module Handbook – especially if un-finished in class.

By week ten:

Personal Blog, preferably as a Quad-blog. This should have nine reflective learning logs, subject dictionary and possibly all other notes and reflections.

Reflective learning logs: nine – preferably illustrated!.

Six word essay: How to succeed at University.

Free write: What is a successful educationalist?

Collage & Artist Statement:

  1. Explain your process (medium and technique).  How was it made?  Which art materials and approaches did you use and why?
  2. Describe the idea behind your artwork.  What story or message does it get across?  What does it mean to you?
  3. Why did you create it?  What are your reasons for creating that specific art piece?  What do you want your audience to feel and think while observing it?

Digital Project: Developing digital self: write up of your strategy for using #ds106 website – with regular reflections on progress with your personal digital development project. Tip: This could be your Becoming research project!

50-word essays: Either: Successful University writing Or Successful University reading.

Field notes of investigation of the University as a site or sites of learning.

Poster presentation: The University as a site of research and knowledge production; the student as producer of knowledge.

Short essay: How far should our actions depend on our values and beliefs?

Drawings – including of ontology and epistemology.

Written consideration of role of drawing in teaching, learning, research… Construct a possible paragraph for your final essay on the value of drawing and/or art for an educationalist, remembering the paragraph questions:

  1. What is this paragraph about?
  2. What exactly is that?
  3. What is your argument (in relation to the question as a whole)?
  4. What is the evidence? What does it mean?
  5. So what? (Please make a point that relates back to the question as a whole.)

Project: Research an artist, an art movement or a particular work of art – and consider how you might use what you have learned in your studying now – and your teaching in the future – for three-minute presentation, W11. See: and

Key word, illustrated notes from all lectures, activities and workshops:

What is an educationalist?

Who and what is education for?

Socialisation, indoctrination or emancipation: what sort of educationalist do I want to be?

Role play and simulations – and their role on teaching and learning

Enlightened self interest, utilitarianism, moral imperative

Analytical and critical thinking – and how to develop it in the self and others

Image mediated dialogue – and its role in teaching and learning

Topic mediated dialogue – and its role in teaching and learning

Academic writing#1 & #2

Presentations: what, why, how

Self-efficacy, self-confidence and self-esteem – in the academic environment

Positive thinking in the academic environment

Gareth Malone (Choir)

Last Chance Kids – the tyranny of literacy

Research – the university and community

Research – ontology, epistemology, positivism, interpretism…

Drawing for teaching, learning and research

Participant observation

Research project: ideas and draft of Project proposal

‘Digital self’ project.

Also: Bandura; Bentham; Burr; Freire; Giroux; Kant; Robinson; Rogers…

PHEW!! How do you feel now?

If you have a new Writing Strategy as a result of this Writing Retreat – please tell us about it in the Comments section. (To find the Comments section – click on the speech bubble near the title of the blogpost.)



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