A Sample Problem - Making a painting
Date: 2008.04.27 @ 6:21 PCT +10GMT.
My approach is primarily behaviourist - but
of course keeping structuralist and
cognivist concepts in mind.
The primary pillars of my work centre around
the work and ideas of the following:
As i will detail later, there is much to be
learned from these three true pioneers in
learning philosophy and psychology.
This is a brief introduction to what i am
about, etc. Very rough, etc.
1. Most of the work that these people did actually
does work. The results, far from being speculative
and only having theoretical applications, are applicable
in many real-world applications. Naturally, there are
limittions. These will be noted along the way.
Further, taking their work and adding to it not only
more recent findings, and different ways of viewing
learning will (should?) provide even more powerful
ways of making teaching/learning not only more effective,
less painful, but also more fun for teacher and learner.
2. In all three cases, the researchers were more or
less forced to find solutions to problems and not
having vast resources had to make do with simple models
and learn as they went.
When viewing Skinner and his work with rats, later
much more so with Pigeons - we would be well to
remember that the break-through in understanding
neurons was made by studying the nervous system
of snails; ie, animal analogues *are* valid in
Piaget's work is important because he showed that
much information and knowledge IS hierarchical and
can't be taught at random. This has even been shown
in animal studies. For example, crows are taught to
retieve food in an increasily complicated setup. In
some cases, where crows are taught a seeminlgy
trivial trick, it turns out to be KEY to their
mastering a fairly difficult trick later. Crows that
aren't presented with the trivial trick simply can
not learn to solve the complicated trick.
Montessori was the first person to understand that
everone (regardless of where they are starting from
on the IQ, personality-type, etc. - spectrums) are
able to make progress. She also, was one of the
first to understand that the more and different
senses that we use in learning the deeper the
learning becomes. She also (mainly for a total
lack of staff) had more progressive students
help the less advanced. This synergistically
helped to improve the self-image of both
the student-as-teacher and the student-as-learner.
3. Another of my primary focuses is "learning as game".
That is, when we first start out as children we
don't even know that we are "working" at learning.
It's simply new and thus entices us by way of our
natural curiosity. Game playing has been shown
recently to have definite advantages in helping
patients recover from strokes, prevention of senility,
and the treatment of depression. Indeed, as some
researchers have said, "We truely are 'homo ludens'
- game-playing may." (not an exact quote)
4. Another aspect is the impact of various analogies
in the sciences and arts and how they can be
"translated" into other areas.
Refer to the site: http://www.angelfire.com/planet/iconosphere-zix/
for my thoughts on this. The idea of "zix" is:
z = creativity
i = imagination
x = the unknown,
thus, if we explore things in the "dimensions" of
z to the power of i to the power of x
then it turns out to be a pretty big "space".
This also pours over into recent trends in "quantum
thinking", "fractal thinking", etc. - which have become
"hot" topics in alternative education.
5. Finally (for now), my goal is to develop a set of
tools, scripts, ideas, etc. - all designed at making
learning as creative and interesting as possible. The
"big three" boring/difficult subjects are: History,
Maths, and of course Grammar. And yet, oddly enough
- aside from being useful - can be some of the most
rewarding "passtimes" in exploring this thing called
"life" (see map).