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How do we decide what is appropriate for our students? Consider issues of: interest prior experience cognitive development.

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Presentation on theme: "How do we decide what is appropriate for our students? Consider issues of: interest prior experience cognitive development."— Presentation transcript:

1 How do we decide what is appropriate for our students? Consider issues of: interest prior experience cognitive development

2 Language from Cognitive Science Concepts—a regularity in experience Relationship—dynamic between concepts Principles—two concepts and their relationships Schema—network of concepts and principles Cognitive Dissonance—inability to “fit” into schema Equilibration—generating fit between ideas and schema Assimilation—fitting new ideas into old schema Accommodation—creating new schema Truth value—whether or not a principle is “true”/correct Warrants—on what is the certainty of “truth” based? Epistemology—branch of philosophy—how we know

3 Consider your “target schema” What, in general, do you want to teach? What are the concepts that are important? What are the relationships that are important? What do the standards (both sets) say? Be prepared to be flexible so you can respond to the students as you continue planning. Get some ideas in mind and then make adjustments based on the students.

4 Consider this from MD VSC Grade 5.2.A.2. a. Identify and describe events such as tornadoes, hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and flooding which change surface features rapidly. Consider hurricanes

5 Concept Name --Hurricane Attributes--High winds, rain, rotation Examples-- Super Storm Sandy And Non-examples --a snow storm But not in that order

6 Concept Maps Depicting Schema

7 penny is used to tip the jar/flask… that is all it does opening of jar/flask is down jar/flask is tipped a bit

8 Concept Name -- Heat Attributes-- Touch, Expansion, High to low Examples-- Candle flame in jar And Non-examples -- Water in jar But not in that order

9 Concept Name -- Heat Attributes-- Convection, Conduction, Radiation Examples-- Candle flame in jar And Non-examples -- Water in jar But not in that order

10 Target Schema Think about what you intend to teach Be critical of what you see addressed Think of your students and curriculum

11 Target Schema

12 Interest Listen to students—what do they talk about? Watch students—what are they doing? Pay attention to questions—what do they ask? Pick up on body language—what do they respond to? Talk to students—what do they think? Ask students questions—what guidance can they give?

13 Prior Experience What experiences are the students likely to have had with the target schema? (examples) What experiences are the students likely NOT to have had with the target schema? What concepts and relationships might the students be able to put into words? (names) What concepts and relationships might the students be able to describe? (attributes)

14 Cognitive Development Is it likely that: the students will need to have actual objects in front of them in order to think about the concepts and relationships? (sensorimotor/preoperational) the students’ reasoning will be tied to what they observe and experience directly, but may extend beyond the presence of objects/events? (concrete) the students will be able to extrapolate their reasoning to hypothetical experiences, including those that use models that cannot be seen? (formal)

15 Sensorimotor (SM) SM students are primarily experiencing the world directly through their senses with little controlled reasoning ability. SM students may be mainstreamed in inclusion-model classrooms.

16 Preoperational Very young children must have things happening right in front of them to be able to reason about it. Objects must be there. Events must be taking place. Language is developing, so words must be tied to the experience directly. They will have trouble expressing their ideas. Egocentrism restricts knowledge to their own perspective.

17 Concrete Operations Reasoning is still tied to actual objects and experiences but now the student can recall what has happened in the past. They are able to think about a process backwards—reversing it and reasoning about the result of not doing something. Can classify and logically conserve. Rely on conspicuous variables—seen, felt Prefer simple, single cause explanations.

18 Formal Operations Can reason without direct experience—abstractly. Can work with mental models and analogies, including those that rely on unseen entities and unfelt forces. Can isolate variables more easily than in concrete operations, and can design experiments that control multiple variables at a time. Can work with complex causal chains (extensive cause-effect relationships) Can reason through different combinations of variables.

19 The Role of Experience sensorimotor—knowledge is sensation preoperational—there is no knowledge except in terms of the here and now experience concrete—knowledge is based on present and past experience, but reasoning does not extend outside what the learner has experienced formal—experience shapes reasoning, which can extend beyond actual experience, but must be consistent with what has been experienced

20 Explanations preoperational—it happened that way because that is how it happened concrete—it happened that way because of what I saw or felt formal—it happened that way because of a change in conditions and the effect(s) that had on the forces and entities that were involved (some of which I cannot sense directly.)

21 Planned Intellectual Activity What schema are your learners likely to have that relate to the target schema? What concepts and relationships in your target schema is the learner likely to have to assimilate? What concepts and relationships in your target schema is the learner likely to have to accommodate?

22 Equilibration Does your lesson create cognitive dissonance? This may require additional experiences—perhaps addressed to an earlier cognitive stage—in order to be resolved. Prior experience may have to be replayed. Does your lesson call for conceptual change? New concepts must be intelligible, plausible, and valuable (in terms of helping make sense) for students to accept them in place of what they already “know”.

23 Cognitive Development & Planning “Remember that a cognitive stage represents the capability of a level of intellectual development; it does not represent the accomplishment of that level.” (pp ) When planning for students you don’t know well, or for a mixed group, it is generally safe to plan one level below where you think the best students might be and then be prepared to move up quickly if appropriate. It is generally easier to move up than down as you teach.

24 On what is the explanation based? The water went up because the flame sucked up all of the air and then sucked up the water. The water went up because the air pressure inside the flask was lower than the air pressure outside the flask, so the water went in until the pressure was the same again. The flame burned up all of the air in the space and then the water went up into the space.

25 On what is the explanation based? Once the air inside was used up, the flame started to pull in the oxygen that is in the water, making it rise into the flask. The water went up because the flame went out and there was nothing to hold the water out. The candle heated the air molecules, causing them to move faster and exert more pressure. When the candle went out the air cooled. Then the molecules were exerting less pressure, so the pressure outside pushed the water into the flask.

26 Some attributes of children’s evidence (a la Robeck) Is it based on entities that are directly observable (concrete), or is it based on entities that are reasoned to be present (abstract)? Is it discussing substances as wholes, or as matter with separate parts and specific properties? Is it focused on the most obvious factors, or does it rely on less obvious forces? Does the explanation focus on one aspect of the system, or does it integrate several aspects? Does it relate to a larger set of ideas (theory), or is it focused primarily on immediate experience?

27 Don’t be taken in by… Technical language—They may not understand the term(s). “Heat always rises” “The flame uses oxygen--the air took up less space” Obfuscation—An overly detailed response my indicate a lack of understanding. “The thermodynamic properties of the flask led to conduction of heat to the ambient air.”

28 Apparent absurdity & Images of the “Irrational Child”——They may just be having trouble saying things. Children usually have good reasons for what they say. “The pushiness is higher because of the flame until the flame goes out, then the water’s pushiness starts to win.” Personification—”The flame wants oxygen” Silence—They may be running deep. Bad Behavior—It may be a cover up.

29 Of all the ideas about planning shared today, the most important are… Listen—to the children Listen—to get to know interests Listen—to understand experience Listen—to appreciate the child’s reasoning

30 Find more at… Children's Misconceptions about Science New York Science Teacher dex.php Errors in Science Textbooks Beyond Penguins and Polar Bears mit=Search

31 Children’s Ideas Deserve Respect "Planet: A body of earth surrounded by sky." "The skeleton is what is left after the insides have been taken out and the outsides have been taken off. The purpose of the skeleton is something to hitch meat to." "The tides are a fight between the Earth and Moon. All water tends towards the moon, because there is no water in the moon, and nature abhors a vacuum. I forget where the sun joins in this fight." "A fossil is an extinct animal. The older it is, the more extinct it is."

32 Respect children, or… A teacher was giving a lesson on the circulation of the blood. Trying to make the matter clearer, she said, "Now, class, if I stood on my head, the blood, as you know, would run into it, and I would turn red in the face." "Yes," the class said. "Then why is it that while I am standing upright in the ordinary position, the blood doesn't run into my feet?" A little fellow shouted, "Cause yer feet ain't empty."


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