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Wednesday, July 5

  1. page Dan Willingham edited ... Why doesn't knowledge transfer? If someone understands an abstract principle, we expect they …
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    Why doesn't knowledge transfer?
    If someone understands an abstract principle, we expect they will show transfer, they can successfully apply old knowledge to a new problem.
    SurfaceProblems have a Surface structure
    Deep
    and a Deep structure. Transfer only occurs if people see the Deep structure of a problem. Examples are provided on pp. 75-6, one of them straightforward and the other more difficult.
    Transfer is poor because people get caught up in the surface structure of a problem. Their background knowledge of the problem domain is surface knowledge. There is no easy way around this. Deep structure is not obvious. An almost limitless number of deep structures might be applicable.
    The trick is to see the analogy.
    Implications for the classroom
    Provide examples of a given concept, eg. irony, and ask students to compare them. From Ch 2, we remember what we think about
    Make deep knowledge the spoken and unspoken emphasis. The low level facts are important but if that is all you ask you send a message that that is all there is.
    If it's on the test then it's important.
    Make your expectations for deep knowledge realistic. It may take a long time.
    Bibliography
    References mention analogical reasoning
    Chapter 5 Is Drilling Worth It?
    YES!
    It is virtually impossible to become proficient at a mental task without extended practice
    Practice Enables Further Learning
    Improve working memory by
    Chunking: storing facts in long term memory
    Automisation eg. tying laces, driving car
    What it's like to be a beginning reader
    Must practice
    Alfred North Whitehead: "Civilisation advances by extending the number of important operations we can perform without thinking about them"
    Practice makes memory longer lasting
    Practice improves transfer
    Implications for the classroom
    What should be practiced?
    Retrieving number facts from memory
    Retrieving letter sounds from memory
    Basic facts about elements
    Space out the practice
    Memory is more enduring when practice is spaced out
    Fold Practice into more advanced skills
    Chapter 6 What's the Secret to Getting Students to Think like real Scientists, Mathematicians and Historians?
    Cognition early in training is fundamentally different from cognition late in training
    What is in an Expert's Mental Toolbox?
    How can we get students to think like experts?
    Implications for the classroom
    Students are ready to comprehend but not to create knowledge
    Activities that are appropriate for experts my at times be appropriate for students, but not because they will do much for students cognitively
    Don't expect novices to learn by doing what experts do
    Chapter 7: How should I adjust my teaching for different types of learners?
    Children are more alike than different in terms of how they think and learn
    Styles and Abilties
    Cognitive Styles
    Visual, Auditory and Kinesthetic learners
    Abilities and Multiple Intelligences
    Conclusions

    (view changes)
    3:01 am

Monday, July 3

  1. page Dan Willingham edited ... No one can pour new ideas into a student's head directly. Every new idea must build on ideas t…
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    No one can pour new ideas into a student's head directly. Every new idea must build on ideas that the student already knows. The right ideas from the student's long term memory are pulled up and put into working memory.
    Why is knowledge shallow?
    ...
    without understanding ... very rare, what is described as rote is more often shallow knowledge
    Shallow knowledge: Limited understanding
    Deep knowledge: rich connections b/w the topic specific concepts, requires much study, time, experience, effort
    Example: teaching the idea of government to young kids using the analogy of a classroom having rules
    Why doesn't knowledge transfer?
    If someone understands an abstract principle, we expect they will show transfer, they can successfully apply old knowledge to a new problem.
    Surface structure
    Deep structure

    (view changes)
    1:56 am
  2. page Dan Willingham edited ... 2 Factual knowledge precedes skill It is not possible to think well on a topic in the absence…
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    2 Factual knowledge precedes skill
    It is not possible to think well on a topic in the absence of factual knowledge about the topic
    ...
    of thought (we remember what we think about)
    4 We understand new things in the context of things we already know
    ...
    won't get theirthere without the
    5 Proficiency requires practice
    What material will students need at their fingertips ... then practice, practice, practice
    ...
    Talk about learning styles is usually not helpful
    8 Intelligence can be changed through sustained hard work
    ...
    effort, not abiltyability
    9 Teaching must be practiced to be improved
    Improvement requires reflection on what is working and not working
    ...
    Paying attention 44
    What good teachers have in common
    (unfinished)
    Chapter 4 Why is it hard for students to understand abstract ideas?
    Abstraction is one of the key goals of schooling
    We understand new things in the context of things we already know, and most of what we know is concrete
    When we first hear, Force = mass * acceleration, we ask for a concrete example
    Expose students to many versions of the given principle. eg. Area of rectangles. Have them solve problems about tabletops, soccer fields, envelopes, doors and so on
    Understanding is remembering in disguise
    Don't assume that students understand new facts. They understand things they don't know by relating them to things they do know.
    Analogies are useful
    Ohms Law R = V/I or I = V/R
    I = electric current, how fast electrons are moving
    V = voltage, the potential difference, the force pushing the electrons
    R = resistance, different materials vary in how easily electrons can flow (metals good, non metals poor)
    To explain this use a hose analogy. The current is how fast the water flows. The voltage is how much you turn the tap. The resistance is how much you turn the nozzle to prevent or slow the water flowing.
    Concrete examples: It's not the concreteness but the familiarity that's important. But most of what students are familiar with is the concrete.
    Understanding is remembering in disguise. To understand current, voltage and resistance we remember the water / hose analogy.
    No one can pour new ideas into a student's head directly. Every new idea must build on ideas that the student already knows. The right ideas from the student's long term memory are pulled up and put into working memory.
    Why is knowledge shallow?
    Rote learning: Memorising words without understanding
    Shallow knowledge: Limited understanding
    Deep knowledge:

    (view changes)
    12:56 am

Monday, May 1

  1. page home edited ... LEARNING THEORY EVOLVES - initially created by Bill Kerr (blog, website) DIRECT INSTRUCTION…
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    LEARNING THEORY EVOLVES
    - initially created by Bill Kerr (blog, website)
    DIRECT INSTRUCTION AND INDIGENOUS EDUCATION: FROM THE INSIDE OUT (Bill Kerr April, 2017)
    From the inside out because neither the advocates or critics of Direct Instruction follow Hegel's advice:
    "The genuine refutation must penetrate the opponent's stronghold and meet him on his own ground; no advantage is gained by attacking him somewhere else and defeating him where he is not"

    Direct Instruction - Indigenous Memes (December 2013 - Bill)
    CONTEXT: appalling basic literacy and numeracy rates amongst indigenous Australians, especially those who live in remote regions.
    (view changes)
    12:25 am
  2. page research outline edited RESEARCH PROPOSAL (version 5) DIRECT INSTRUCTION AND INDIGENOUS EDUCATION: FROM THE INSIDE OUT B…
    RESEARCH PROPOSAL (version 5)
    DIRECT INSTRUCTION AND INDIGENOUS EDUCATION: FROM THE INSIDE OUT
    Bill Kerr April, 2017
    From the inside out because neither the advocates or critics of Direct Instruction follow Hegel's advice:
    "The genuine refutation must penetrate the opponent's stronghold and meet him on his own ground; no advantage is gained by attacking him somewhere else and defeating him where he is not"
    https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/hegel/works/hl/hlnotion.htm
    Preamble: Aurukun violence 2016
    CONTENTS
    1) BEGINNINGS
    1.1) Context: Appalling basic literacy and numeracy rates amongst indigenous Australians, especially those who live in remote regions
    1.2) World view: Our perceptions of the world are caught in the web of our internal beliefs, values and conceptualisations
    1.3) Hypothesis: Many can't see the value of DI because of the synergistic influence of a plethora of mind memes which act as blinkers and filters to influence their perception
    1.4) Visceral Hatred From The Right And The Left: Fanaticism is on display from both sides of politics in this culture war
    1.5) Meme Warfare: Memes Working Against And For Direct Instruction In An Indigenous Context
    The memes (opposing and supporting Direct Instruction) are grouped under various subheadings: (1) Culture, (2) Beliefs and Social Values (3) Social Class, (4) Learning, Including Creativity, (5) Epistemic Values, (6) Politics (7) Computer Lib
    2) DIRECT INSTRUCTION
    2.1) Description of DI
    The Direct Instruction (DI) approach is a good attempt to solve a number of practical problems that arise for teachers of severely disadvantaged students who have poor skills at reading, writing and comprehending English and Maths.
    2.2) Why DI Works
    evidence-based is powerful but compelling reasons are needed as well to convince humans
    2.3) The Evidence
    The evidence is strong. But what needs clarification is what precisely does DI achieve and what does it not achieve?
    2.4) Why DI Is Reviled By Some
    Kerry Hempenstall document 20 reasons why DI evokes rancour.
    3) CULTURE
    3.1 Is Indigenous Culture Superior To Western Culture?
    Indigenous culture has a better record with regard to the environmental crisis that is perceived to be the central political issue for modern society
    3.2 Indigenous Culture As A Priority
    one side of the argument argues that indigenous culture is an absolute priority and must come first
    3.2.1) Lewthaite Interviews
    3.2.2) Richard Trudgen: Why Warriors Lie Down and Die
    3.2.3) Ghil'ad Zuckerman: Linguicide
    3.2.4) Identity / Alienation
    3.3 Indigenous Culture As Important But Not A Priority
    3.3.1) Warrior culture or equality culture?
    3.3.2) Indigenous culture has a significant downside.
    3.3.3) Oral culture
    3.4 Actual Attempts To Implement Cultural Based School Curriculums
    3.4.1) Chris Sarra's Stronger Smarter Institute
    3.4.2) Tyson Yunkaporta's 8 ways
    3.4.3) Barry Osborne's Culturally Responsive and Culturally Relevant Pedagogy
    3.5) Cultural Transformation Is A More Important Issue Than A Static Culture
    3.5.1) Noel Pearson. Any real culture is layers of varying cultures
    3.5.2) Michelle Moody-Adams / Amartya Sen. Cultural differences tend to be exaggerated
    3.6) Inequality Is More Important Than Diversity
    3.6.1 Diversity issues (race, culture, minority rights) act as a diversion from the main issue of capitalism
    3.6.2 The economic base is the fundamental determinant of culture
    3.7) Cultural Relativism and the Left
    Furedi: How the left became conservative
    4 BELIEFS and SOCIAL VALUES
    Incorporates racism, rights, morality, compassion, justice, prejudice, shame, paying attention. Social values are distinguished from epistemic values – later
    4.1) Moral image of the world
    A moral image of the world is central and does translate into teachers determination to deliver, if they have that moral image.
    4.2) Closing the Gap or changing the gap?
    No one argues about the health gap but some are unsure about the educational gap.
    4.2.1) The desire to be normal (The national curriculum as lodestone)
    4.3) Rights and Responsibilities
    The responsibility agenda rather than the rights agenda is the more pressing requirement in the current context of indigenous progress (Noel Pearson)
    4.4) Compassion: How tough is tough love?
    4.5) Capabilities approach
    Sen / Nussbaum Capabilities approach: What is it that a person can do?
    4.6) Racism: overt and covert
    Bill Leak cartoon – racist or identification of a real problem
    5) SOCIAL CLASS
    5.1 Trump cards
    The fault lies with the system! Or The fault lies with the responsible individuals!
    5.2 No child left behind (NCLB)
    Arguments for and against
    5.3 Interaction skills and No Excuses Schools (Golann)
    No Excuses schools can improve academic results and yet reduce life chances through stifling interaction skills
    5.4 Early intervention has the best results (Heckman)
    If society intervenes early enough, it can improve cognitive and socioemotional abilities and the health of disadvantaged children
    5.5 Poverty
    Student achievement will not be advanced unless poverty and disadvantage are first eliminated, or, Student outcomes are more determined by educational factors than social factors
    5.6 School Attendance
    5.7 Jobs
    5.8 Social class, Hattie and DI
    social class is more important than what teachers do. Hattie then proceeds to put social class into the too hard basket and focuses on what teachers can do
    6) LEARNING, INCLUDING CREATIVITY
    Measurement is not straight forward because we have to decide what is important to measure. For one thing, this relates back to close the gap versus change the gap considerations. But even without that we will see that what to measure is a very complex question indeed. Furthermore, some things are easy to measure (think thin descriptors like NAPLAN testing), other things are harder to measure (think thick descriptors like intensive longitudinal studies) and some things don't get measured at all … (eg. the unknown unknowns). Researchers also draw conclusions, summing up their research, so some of that belongs here too.
    6.1) Measurement: easy to measure / hard to measure
    Respecting individuals in all their diversity is more important than measurement, or, Measurement is more important than sentiment.
    6.2) Self-efficacy
    Self-efficacy, how a person feels about their ability to accomplish in a given field
    6.3) Learning styles
    debunked by Dan Willingham
    6.4) Reading Wars
    For and against phonics
    6.5) Maths wars
    6.5.1) JUMP fractions
    6.5.2) YuMi Deadly Maths
    6.5.3) Liping Ma
    6.5.4 Ethnomaths: Alan Bishop
    6.5.5) What is maths? Lockies Lament.
    6.6) Creativity
    Rhonda Farkota: When it came to the employment and cultivation of higher order skills where reasoning and reflection were required it was clear that a student-directed approach to learning was better suited. But when it came to the acquisition of basic skills the empirical evidence unequivocally showed that a teacher-directed approach was best suited
    6.7) Brain science
    6.8) Unintended Consequences Of Full Immersion Di: Teacher Quality?
    Good teachers may like to have more control over their lesson structure than is allowed through the NIFDI version of DI
    6.9) John Hattie's Eight Mind Frames
    6.10 Let a hundred flowers be evaluated. But how?
    The higher goal of education is to learn how to think and argue better about complex questions of all types - philosophical, scientific, political, ethical, personal, the meaning of life, etc. The only way to achieve this is to have teachers who model this thinking themselves!
    7 EPISTEMOLOGY: EPISTEMIC VALUES / PREJUDICES
    Advocates like to claim that “science is on our side” but we also need to go through a process of understanding what science really is and the strengths and limitations of science
    7.1 Swear words again
    7.2 Naturalism
    7.2.1 For Naturalism
    Rousseau: Progress is freedom because humans are naturally good. Whatever is natural is good
    7.2.2 Against Naturalism
    Anthropological findings show that there is no easy or natural path to certain types of knowledge, including reading and writing
    7.3 Constructivism / Constructionism (Papert, includes Piaget)
    “The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled” Plutarch 45AD-120AD
    7.4) Friere
    Difference of opinion between Noel Pearson and Allan Luke
    7.5) Vygotsky
    7.6) Bruner
    7.7 Cognitivism and decomposing knowledge
    7.8) Causation / Probabilistic explanations
    7.9 Behaviourism
    7.10 Logical Empiricism
    7.11 Ambiguity Is Written Deeply Into Knowledge Structures
    What Zig Engelmann does is take the good idea that instruction should be tidied up and made clear too far into the claim that in general instruction can be made unambiguous
    7.12 Pragmatism, includes Dewey
    7.13) Dialectics
    8 POLITICS
    Missionaries, misfits and mercenaries: do they dominate the scene? Is closing the gap a wicked problem? The nature of wicked problems. To succeed in the white man's world will lead to being ostracised within one's own culture. Is Noel Pearson a good man or a bad man?
    8.1) Rebellion
    8.2) Money
    8.3) The political left has lost its way
    8.4) Welfare poison
    8.5) Noel Pearson and the jigsaw metaphor
    Noel has figured out some parts of a complex jigsaw but not all the parts
    8.6) Noel and Me
    9) 21ST CENTURY EDUCATION AKA COMPUTER LIB
    You hear quite a lot of talk amongst “progressives” that the new computer medium makes the old ways of educating obsolete
    9.1) 21st Century Skills, web 2.0
    9.2) The case against
    10) WHERE IS THE ARGUMENT HEADING?
    10.1) Has everyone failed?
    The fractured lives of indigenous people
    10.2) Motivations
    10.3) Indigenous jigsaw
    10.3.1) What sort of leader can turn around a failing school?
    Architects are the only leaders with any real long-term impact, as they quietly redesign the school and transform the community it serves
    10.4) The place of DI in the jigsaw
    10.5) Is Radical Epistemological Self Transformation Possible?
    Does evidence determine outlook or does outlook determine what evidence one is prepared to look at?
    10.6) What is science?
    When people argue that science or evidence supports their viewpoint what does this mean? This requires not only looking at the evidence but also looking at the model of science that is being evoked here

    (view changes)
    12:11 am

Saturday, March 11

  1. page learning theories edited ... What might cognition be if not computation? Answer: the Watt Governor James Gee (semiotic dom…
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    What might cognition be if not computation? Answer: the Watt Governor
    James Gee (semiotic domains, game related learning theory)
    Dan Willingham "learning styles don't exist, the important thing is meaning"
    Dan Willingham book: Why Don't Students Like School?

    INSTRUCTIONISM: educational outcomes can be identified: fact recall, skills and attitudes. Education can be optimised to achieve measurable changes in these desired outcomes
    behaviourism
    ...
    Carl Wieman "optimising learning"
    John Hattie - the difference between expert teachers and experienced teachers
    Dan Willingham "learning styles don't exist, the important thing is meaning"
    Dan Willingham book: Why Don't Students Like School?

    Andy diSessa
    (view changes)
    7:11 pm
  2. page learning theories edited ... John Hattie - the difference between expert teachers and experienced teachers Dan Willingham …
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    John Hattie - the difference between expert teachers and experienced teachers
    Dan Willingham "learning styles don't exist, the important thing is meaning"
    Dan Willingham book: Why Don't Students Like School?
    Andy diSessa
    (view changes)
    5:03 pm
  3. page hofstadter edited Douglas Hofstadter Metamagical Themas: Questing for the Essence of Mind and Pattern (1985) conta…
    Douglas Hofstadter
    Metamagical Themas: Questing for the Essence of Mind and Pattern (1985)
    contains: 'Waking Up from the Boolean Dream, or, Subcogniton as Computation' (1982)

    Metamagical Themas: Questing For the Essence of Mind and Pattern by Douglas Hofstadter (1985)
    Essay 26: Waking up from the Boolean Dream, or, Subcognition as Computation
    (view changes)
    4:51 pm
  4. page hofstadter edited ... Metamagical Themas: Questing for the Essence of Mind and Pattern (1985) contains: 'Waking Up …
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    Metamagical Themas: Questing for the Essence of Mind and Pattern (1985)
    contains: 'Waking Up from the Boolean Dream, or, Subcogniton as Computation' (1982)
    Metamagical Themas: Questing For the Essence of Mind and Pattern by Douglas Hofstadter (1985)
    Essay 26: Waking up from the Boolean Dream, or, Subcognition as Computation

    The central problem for AI is the question: What is the letter 'a'? (p. 633)
    Perception is where it's at!
    ...
    to contrast what is with our way of seeing things
    sideways connections
    contains: 'VariationsEssay 12: Variations on a
    ...
    Crux of Creativity'Creativity (1982)
    Slipping can follow unpredictable path - malapropism, malaphor
    ...
    eg. MetaFont (240)
    variations of letter A on page 243!!!
    ...
    seeing anyway (247)
    each new concept begins life as a compound of previous concepts, and that from the slippability of those concepts, it inherits a certain amount of slippability ...
    ...
    retrieval ...
    where
    (249)
    Arthur Koestler .... Act of Creation .... presents a theory of creativity whose key concept he calls 'bisociation' - the simultaneous activation and interaction of two previously unconnected concepts ... something new can happen when two concepts 'collide' and fuse - something not present in the concepts themselves ... in keeping with Koestler's philosophy that wholes are somehow greater than the sum of their parts ... By contrast, I have been emphasizing the idea of the internal structure of one concept ... the divisibility of concepts into subconceptual elements (250)
    BK: Koestler's holism neglects internal contradictions
    Reader criticism ... making variations (ie. twisting knobs) is easy ... so how can genius be that easy? (251)
    For a genius it is easy to be a genius
    the crux of creativity is not in twiddling knobs, but in spotting them ... where
    do good
    ...
    else ... (251)
    - fresh situations get unconsciously framed in terms of familiar concepts
    - those familiar concepts come equipped with standard knobs to twiddle
    - twiddling those knobs carries you into fresh new conceptual territory
    (254)
    making concept into a legitimate scientific term is the central goal of cognitive science
    you let your memory and perceptual mechanism do all the hard work for you (pulling concepts from dormancy); all you do is twiddle knobs (255)

    The concept of the implicosphere of an idea - the sphere of variations on it resulting from the twiddling of many knobs a "reasonable" amount - is a difficult one ...
    Slippage of thought is a remarkably invisible phenomenon
    (view changes)
    1:14 pm

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