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The following instructions are for Assignment #5. For weeks 8,9,10, and 11.

1) This is an asynchronous group interaction.


2) The students are divided into 3 groups A) eight members, B) seven members,
and C) seven members
3) Group A) will focus on week 8 readings
Group B) will focus on week 9 and and 10 readings
Group C) will focus on weeks 11 readings

4) The following questions are for interaction:


a) Discuss how your week's assigned readings contribute to pedagogy and
curriculum approaches for today's learners.
b) Identify two or three significant concrete messages in each article that are
important to your curriculum area of emphasis.
5) You must comment on one of your group members responses.

6) Deadline for first post (answering questions on point 4) October 25st

Active Learning
By L. Dee Fink

If we look at the current educational system and model that is being used in most
cases, we can probably identify a flaw in the system. Students go to an educational
institution for eight hours a day, 12 years, taking a list of classes that are supposed
to prepare them for the next grouping, sitting down in a class and for the most part
listening to a teacher. Just as there are exceptions from student to student, there
are exceptions from school to school. Upon graduating, they are expected to be
diverse, engage in conversation, be responsible for their learning and develop from
the narrow concept of content. In this reading, conversation with self or
conversation with others, seems attainable by all. Yet not all of our 21 st century
learners have developed the skills necessary to dialogue with others or actively
participate in a discussion board. In my classes, I find myself teaching more by
doing. Expecting the students to learn by observing. In most of my classes, I try to
incorporate collaborative assignments. I understand that it may be uncomfortable
for most in the beginning, however slowly I do see that the confidence level builds.
One point that Dee presents is the Power of Interaction, if the student writes their
own thoughts on the topic, before engaging in small group work, the group work

should be more meaningful and robust. Definitely something that I need to


incorporate into my classes.

Teach to students learning styles


Judie Haynes
I believe that most students do not really understand what learning style actually is.
Perhaps they might have heard of this concept in some class or they might have
read it somewhere, but do they know the importance of it? Most faculty teach as
we learn. Most of us learn thru lecture and class assignments/projects. Before we
can teach the student to their style we need to identify and more importantly the
student needs to know what their style is. We utilize the VARK questionnaire
(http://vark-learn.com/the-vark-questionnaire/) in our curriculum to help students
self-identify their learning style. This is not a scientific approach; however, it does
help self-realization and helps with understanding the learning styles of each
student. I was not aware of the concept of Global or Analytic learners as described
by Hayes. Understanding the differences would have an impact in my teaching. At
times I find myself without a structured lesson, and knowing this I can see how I
might lose the interest of the students.

Creating an Equitable Classroom Environment


Villa and Baptistes
One message that I got from this article, is that teaching is a transmission of
knowledge from teacher to student through direct instruction. Teachers have not
developed an understanding of culture nor of student exposure. Thus, these
theories are just that, theories of how something is supposed to work. In research
presented here, we see that Dani was not comfortable in the beginning with the
teacher guide. Teachers need to develop as students do. We need to be able to
have data on what works and what does not work and more importantly can adapt
to change. One other key point presented here is the fact that reading content is
not the same as experiencing it. In my computer science classes, we can and do
discuss content over and over, it is not until they can try it out, that they realize the
functionality. And if the teacher is lucky, he/she will be able to repeat the material
with students who have the desire of inquiry.
Teaching Diverse Learners
The concept of sheltered instruction is to protect whom? Are we sheltering the nonnative English speaker from the English speaking or are we trying to shelter them
from non-English speaking? It seems that most schools have moved away from
sheltered and rely on immersion. At the college level this is more difficult, because
we assume that the student can grasp the English language. Just this semester, I
had one student talk to me about his language barrier and comprehension
struggles. He was having a difficult time understanding the computer terms. His

solution was to drop and practice some more, and would try college life in the
future. I like the suggestions presented here, provide opportunities for students to
apply new knowledge. Another point made is, modeling and scaffolding to teach.
Perhaps, if I had utilized this, I might have been able to save the student.