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Randell Rivadeneira
Assignment 14

1. what did you find

1.1. interesting about the article?

I had heard some time about new approaches to teaching, but never in detailed how this new techniques worked. I found it very interesting, that most of the last part of the paper was describing how a new-comer would see and react to a new model of education. I certainly believe that I would react in the same way and still do, the new Community of Learners mode seem far fetched and to unstructured for me.

1.2. not interesting about the article?

I bit to repetitive, the same arguments were repeated several times.

2. what do you consider the main message of the article?

The main message was that “Community of Learners” model is a new approach for teaching and learning. It is very different from the “child-run” model where the child is the only responsible for the learning process, although they are mistaken for each other. Here the main concern is education through active observation and participation in the community.

3. analyze your own educational experience and

3.1. provide a rough estimate in percentage points for each category and

  • child-run about 10% a rarely had the opportunity to do my own curriculum of study, but I do remember of a few occasions.
  • adult-run about 70-80%, al through elementary to college was the main focus.
  • Community of Learners about 20-30%, my high school was very active in trying new techniques, I thing some of my classes were conducted in this way.

3.2. one example for each category (in case you have encountered all three approaches)

  • child-run: My music class was in this way, I would practice by myself and when I wanted some input from the professor I would go an ask him. If not, I would be left alone.
  • adult-run: Every math class that I’ve been taught.
  • Community of Learner: My physics class was conducted in this manner, we would separate in groups and elaborate some experiments that we wanted to do. Then the professor would oversee the class as each group elaborated their ideas and plan of action.

4. which technologies are used / can be used /should be used to support

4.1. adult-run education

Certainly tools that allow for the professor to be able to convey his thoughts would be of great advantage. Like Power Point, this tool is very useful in presenting ideas (some times chalkboards are not that good).

4.2. child-run education

The web is a tool of great advantage in this education; kids are able to do research in a very simple way. I remember when my school didn’t have access to the internet; any research was done only at the library where a limited amount of information could be found. Tools here should be of the kind that allow the kid to get information that is relevant to their interest at the correct moment in time.

4.3. community of learners education

I think that tools that replicate what occurs in the Community of Learners environment would be beneficial. Take for example Swiki, it allows for every member of the community to add value to the class. It treats everyone as equal and hence replicates some concepts of the model.

5. analyze our course from the three dimensions:

5.1. adult-run education

Some classes where Prof. Fischer has given presentations are adult-run, although he always asks for input and comments from the class (hence not the extreme of the pendulum).

5.2. child-run education

I don’t think we had reached this point, even in our project and independent research are not child-run. We expect to have contact with the professor and some communication between each other in order to understand some aspects of our projects that we do not know.

5.3. community of learners education

I am not sure how well we fit in this model, although the class does treat everyone as part of a community and we develop by interacting with each other. We certainly do not have our parents involved, but we do maintain a level of community among each other.

6. which possibilities do you see to effectively integrate adult- and child-run education?

This is certainly something that the paper addressed and I believe they didn’t favored. I do think that you can still have an adult-run model and use other models as part of your education model. Most of my high school was conducted in and adult-run model, but we would have several classes or some periods during the class, where a Community of Learner was introduce. The paper argued that such models, where you just used a bit a not all were not helpful. I disagree in that sense: since I experienced this type of mechanism through high school and thought they achieved a great result. I believe that some classes a better fit under the adult-run model and some not.

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