It’s a bit weird when you envy post-apocalypse survivors struggling to re-build their world!
Emerging from those bunkers all those people know that they are valuable, needed, necessary. They are part of the world – they are vital to making the world.
Compare that the thoughts and feelings of those living where work is scarce – but blame is high; where the mines, the factories and the fishing industries have all closed down.
Where the only representation you see of ‘people like you’ are on ‘Benefits Street’?
The only way is ethics
This week we looked at self-efficacy and ethical teaching (try saying that when you are tired!). That is – to be ethical teachers we need to build the self-confidence, the self-esteem and the self-valuing of our students (the self-efficacy). We need to help them find voice and power in a world where typically the odds are stacked against them.
According to Bandura self-efficacy is vital to successful learning (http://psychology.about.com/od/theoriesofpersonality/a/self_efficacy.htm) – and according to Tom – many of our school experiences seem designed to knock the efficacy right out of us!
Our discussion point was to consider how we might build self-efficacy in our imaginary post-apocalypse communities – and in our real schools.
One tip was to look at programmes like ‘Strictly Come Dancing’, ‘Master Chef’, ‘The Voice, ‘The Choir’: how do they teach? How and why do their ‘students’ learn? What can we take from that into our own practice?
And if you have any doubts as to why this is really, really important – check out this brief feedback from the South Oxhey community on what it felt like to have, to be in and to listen to their own choir: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p004htz2
For us, this is what all teaching should be about – and if it isn’t about that – then *why* is it?
Following on from this discussion, we carried on textmapping the two articles:
Giroux’s article on lessons to be learned from Freire:
And Thornburg on metaphors of learning spaces: http://tcpd.org/Thornburg/Handouts/Campfires.pdf
… making collages out of the information… to build on and use in our Poster Presentations.
According to our good friend Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collage)
• Is … an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole.
• newspaper clippings, ribbons, coloured or handmade papers, bits of other artwork or texts, photographs and other found objects, glued to a piece of paper or canvas.
• Goes back hundreds of years … but
• Made a dramatic reappearance in the early 20th century.
• Derives from the French “coller” meaning “glue”. viz. Georges Braque andPablo Picasso
• = modern art.
And according to us – collage is a great way for translating meaning from one mode (written) to another (visual) – which in the process requires thought, analysis and understanding. This ‘transliteration’ requires communicating in analogous forms – which is great for notemaking, learning, presenting and developing multimedia: it is a great preparation for the Poster Presentations we will be delivering in W7 – and for the Digital Projects you are embarking upon.
Sandra’s recent collages can be seen here:
Peer Mentoring – getting digitally savvy
It’s never too soon to think about the Develop a Digital Me project – that you can set yourself – that you can do along with the Peer Mentors – and that you all will be presenting on in W12. Some tips from us:
• Explore http://ds106.us/
• Extend yourself with https://www.coursera.org/courses
• Use Zeega.com to make a great artefact – check out Terry Elliot’s one on learning: http://zeega.com/162387
• Produce a student guide on how to search the Web for information or how to use a blog as part of your reflective learning
• Set up a FaceBook study group/use FaceBook as a Reading Dossier – and tell others how…
• Find educationalists on Twitter – follow their posts – read their websites – help other students to do the same
And finally: W5: Study Week – research the University
As exploratory field work for your Research Project, singly, in pairs or in small groups – explore the University as ‘participant observers’ (look this phrase up and think about it) – for Poster Presentation W7 … AND Sandra and Tom will be happy to have a chat about anything at all – in Enricos – between 11.00-13.00, Wednesday 29th October. Be there or be square!