Postponing IOI Weekend Melbourne, Announcing Free Melbourne Taster This Friday Night, May 15th

Postponing IOI Weekend Melbourne, Announcing Free Melbourne Taster This Friday Night, May 15th

The overwhelming feedback we have received has resulted in the difficult decision to postpone IOI Weekend Melbourne until term three. Over the next month we will endeavor to select a better time to run this event, away from report writing time and other conferences. We will also consider splitting the days or running during the school holidays to make it easier for those with young families to attend.

In its place, we’ve decided to run a free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night as a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at the same venue:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

We are sorry to have to reschedule the event at short notice. We will start the process of refunding your ticket purchases today, so please get in touch if the refund doesn’t come through in the next couple of days.

We hope your can join us for the taster on Friday we look forward to seeing you there!

Lou, Kynan and Richard

IOI Weekend Founders

 

Photo credit: Party in the Air by Kim CC By 2.0

From Dependency To Autonomy

From Dependency To Autonomy

In a previous post I suggested that teacher innovators need to understand the new learning strategies that modern learners are using for their own, outside of school learning. I also suggested that these learning strategies can be understood by looking through three lenses:

1) The learning strategies that learners use to construct knowledge with others.

2) The learning strategies that learners use to solve complex problems.

3) The learning strategies that learners use to make better learning decisions.

In this post I want to explore the third of these lenses how modern learners make good learning decisions.

from-dependency

Correlate
Modern learners have the ability to generate large amounts of data about our technology-based activities which enables them to use self-generated data to assess and make decisions on future actions. They understand that data is everywhere and it can be used to help them make better decisions about their own learning.

Modern Learners learners track their improvement through the use of short term, medium term and long term data. They use auto-generated data, whether it be using monitoring programs and sensors, or data analysis of generated artefacts to inform decision making about their learning as the learning is happening. As such correlation is not the post assessment of learning whether is be self assessment, teacher assessment or peer assessment.

Compare
Modern learners have the ability to view the learning artefacts of others which enables them to learn from what other learners are doing or have done. They understand that the online learning of others leaves digital tracks and those tracks can be used to make better decisions about their own learning.

Modern learners follow other learners by using social networks, or interacting with them in their personal online spaces such as their blog. They understand the priorities and the decisions that other learners make, and use this understanding to inform their own decision making. That said comparing is not simply copying what others are doing, or imitating what the teacher is doing. Modern learners do not earn just from a single person, as the usefulness of comparing comes from comparing the decisions of a wide and diverse range of co-learners.

Catch
Modern learners have the ability to participate in virally amplified online activities and events which enables them to easily identify new and important ideas and content. They understand that the more powerful an idea, the more strongly it will be amplified by modern technology making powerful ideas impossible to miss, and therefore they give more weight and attention to strongly amplified ideas and trends.

Modern learners understand therefore give importance of memes and other viral objects, and participate in these. They seek to build upon and amplify the ideas of others and rather than simply re-sharing their ideas. Catching is therefore not teacher directed, or directed by a small group of people, and it is definitely not following the rigid predetermined curriculum.

Cooperate
Modern learners have the ability to learn in the same communities as experts and professionals which enables them to make better decisions about their own learning. They understand that by learning with experts and professionals, their learning is authentic and no longer needs to be simulated.

Modern learners participate in online communities with experts and professionals, as opposed to learning in school provided silos. They identify where the experts and professionals are learning together online and they join these communities. As such, their learning decisions are situated in authentic practice and authentic communities, influenced by what experts and professionals deem important at the time. Cooperation is not schools creating their own online communities separate from the authentic communities of interest.

 

Over the three posts I have described the 12 Principles of Modern Learning, an image of all twelve principles is available below.

ModernLearningGuide

At the IOI Weekend teams will consider the new possibilities that new learning strategies for making better learning decisions make possible for their classroom learning. 

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

From The Known To The Unknown

From The Known To The Unknown

In a previous post I suggested that teacher innovators need to understand the new learning strategies that modern learners are using for their own, outside of school learning. I also suggested that these learning strategies can be understood by looking through three lenses:

1) The learning strategies that learners use to construct knowledge with others.

2) The learning strategies that learners use to solve complex problems.

3) The learning strategies that learners use to make better learning decisions.

In this post I want to explore the second of these lenses, the modern learning strategies that modern learners use to solve complex problems and projects.

from the known to the unknown

Compile
Modern learners have the ability to save and retrieve information in a variety of formats which gives them virtually unlimited capacity to store and retrieve information. Modern learners never start with a metaphorical blank piece of paper but rather draw upon their existing content to inspire and inform.

Instead they use modern technology to extend their capacity by recording and storing (eg photos, files and other digital media) content for future use. These learners recognise that reuse leads to quicker, easier and more importantly higher quality outcomes. They engage in activities with an eye for the future, and considering how the digital objects they create and interact with might be useful in other ways in the future. They engage in social bookmarking, they collate content using services such as Evernote, and they take photos, videos, and record notes using their mobile devices. Compiling is therefore much more than searching the web for ideas and inspiration, or accessing teacher provided resources.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students to be able to easily build on previous learning ideas and content into their current learning? How does the ability to store, organise and audit self-produced digital content lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

Contribute
Modern learners have ability to participate in open and distributed projects which enables them to participate in more complex projects. They understand that it is more appropriate to contribute to an existing project than to start their own project from scratch.

Modern learners therefore seek out existing projects to which they can contribute, they identify the needs of existing online projects and provide assistance as they are able. The level of assistance that they provide will not be the same from project to project but will be determined on the needs of the project and the skills and passions of learner. Contribution is much more than simply participating to school designed group projects, or having an allocated team role or responsibility.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students to be able to participate in existing projects that have been designed and implemented outside of the classroom and curriculum? How does the ability to participate in these external projects lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

Combine
Modern learners have the ability to reuse and build upon the work of others which enables them to move beyond individual and isolated projects. They understand that everything is a remix and that creative and complex solutions always build on other’s previous work and ideas.

Combining is incorporating the contributions of others into your project, by downloading and modifying someone else’s project, or downloading a project and using it for a new or unimagined purpose. These projects might involve remixing audio or video, but might also involve remixing ideas and storylines, such as in fan fiction, or using libraries and code samples in programming. Combining is not taking other’s work and ideas and claiming it as your own.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students to be able to build on the ideas and work of others? How does the ability to remix, reuse and repurpose lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

Change
Modern learners have the ability to quickly obtain feedback from multiple sources which enables them to continuously improve their current work. Modern learners understand that complex projects take a non-linear path with numerous small, non-critical “failures” along the way. Changing involves identifying what learners currently know, what they need to know, and how they can find it out. These learners learn by testing multiple ideas and possible solutions, and as such both success and failure is seen as valid learning.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students to be able to quickly obtain feedback on their ideas and their creations in order to continuously improve them? How does the ability to design, test and evaluate lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

 

At the IOI Weekend teams will consider the new possibilities that new learning strategies for solving complex problems make possible for their classroom learning. 

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

From Me To We

In the previous post I suggested that teacher innovators need to understand the new learning strategies that modern learners are using for their own, outside of school learning. I also suggested that these learning strategies can be understood by looking through three lenses:

1) The learning strategies that learners use to construct knowledge with others.

2) The learning strategies that learners use to solve complex problems.

3) The learning strategies that learners use to make better learning decisions.

In this post I want to explore the first of these lenses, how learners construct knowledge with others.

A few years ago I published the white paper Understanding Virtual Pedagogies for Contemporary Learning and Teaching which proposed four strategies which modern learners use to construct knowledge. This post is based on those ideas, although they have been modified since they were originally published so you will notice some changes.

Collective Knowledge Construction

Connecting
Modern learners have the ability to access high quality content whenever and in whatever format they need it which enables them to draw upon a diverse range of external resources. Modern learners understand that the world is too big to know and therefore use modern technology for just in time learning as the need arises.

Connecting might include using a search engine to find information, asking questions using Twitter, Facebook or other online forum or community, and identifying and returning to trusted online sources as needed. Connecting is not just using the Internet for research, learning via learning objects, or watching on-demand video lectures or whole class video conferencing with experts.

The innovative teacher who seeks increase to pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for students when they can access high quality content at any time? How does the ability to search, ask and source new information lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

Communicating
Modern learners have the ability to publish using a variety of media for low or no cost which enables them to share their ideas and get feedback from others. Modern learners understand that the world is their sounding board and therefore publish continually, in order to maximise the feedback they receive.

Communication is showcasing and reflecting on finished work, using social media to receive feedback on current progress, publishing current and intended learning activity to invite intervention from others. These learners publish their failures as well as their successes. They engage in reflective blogging, tweeting the things they intend to learn, before and as they learn, tacitly inviting others to offer advice and intervene in their learning in other ways.

That said, communication is not blogging or tweeting in a vacuum or creating a digital portfolio which no one ever reads, let alone responds to.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students when they can publish to a global authentic audience in real time, in a variety of formats? How does the ability to present, reflect on, and narrate their learning lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

Collaborating
Modern learners have the ability to form learning networks which enables them to contrast ideas and experiences with other learners. Modern learners understand that diversity trumps curation and multiple sources are always better than a single source. Therefore they use modern technology to access a diverse range of opinions, ideas and experiences.

Collaboration is contrasting and responding to the learning experiences of others for our own sense making. It is learning from and with others, and taking ideas and experiences from one domain and repurposing them in another. Learning from (listening to) experiences shared through social media or a reflective blog. Collaboration is more than having a personal learning network, joining an online community, or simply sharing resources with others.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students to have this rich access to a diverse group of co-learners? How does the ability to confirm, contrast or even repurpose the learning of others lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

Learning Collectively
Modern learners have the ability to form highly interconnected groups around an object of interest enabling them to engage in shared meaning making. Modern learners understand that purpose, not age or geography, connects them to other learners, and therefore they use modern technology to form learning communities around objects of shared interest.

Learning Collectively is seeking to understand the diverse opinions and points of view amongst the defined object. A collective might form around a physical object such a the love for a classic type of car, a virtual object such as playing a game like Minecaft, or a purpose such as creating a free encyclopedia like Wikipedia. As such these collective recognise and celebrate the diversity of experiences, ideas and opinions as they attempt to construct shared understanding and knowledge about the object of inquiry. Individuals in the collective, therefore, attempt to move from personal understanding of sense making to collective meaning making.

The innovative teacher who seeks to increase pedagogical quality and effectiveness, therefore needs to ask what does it mean for their students to be able to join rich and diverse online collectives? How does the ability to synthesis and curate shared knowledge as well as collectively investigate new ideas lead to increased and new student learning outcomes?

 

At the IOI Weekend teams will consider the new possibilities that new learning strategies for knowledge construction make possible for their classroom learning. 

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

Modern learning strategies are at the heart of learning and teaching innovation

We often hear people, when talking about learning and teaching innovation, say something like, “focus on learning and teaching rather focussing on technology.” While technically a good sentiment, this can sometimes be misleading… could there be a risk that when we focus on what we already understand as good learning and teaching we close ourselves off to the possibilities of radically different forms of learning?

A better approach than focussing on technology or on teaching is to focus on how technology is redefining learning strategies. First we need to define learning strategies, to do this lets look at how people learn…

We all learn through experiences that confirm or contrast prior understanding which in turn leads to deeper knowledge, and learning is most effective when we are able to construct knowledge with others, while working on authentic problems where we are able to make meaningful decisions about our learning. 

Modern learning strategies can therefore be defined as strategies that use modern technologies to either help us construct knowledge with others, help us to solve complex problems, or help us make good learning decisions. If we simply started with how students currently construct knowledge currently in our schools and in our classrooms would it cause us to consider new collective knowledge construction that happens in communities like WordPress, Wikipedia or Stack Overflow? If we simply start with how students currently solve problems in our schools and classrooms would it cause us to consider how learners are remixing and reusing others content on YouTube, or repurposing others programs on GitHub or Scratch. If we simply start with what we know about how students currently make decisions in our schools and classrooms would it cause us to consider how communities of practice merge and intersect on Twitter and Facebook, and network conversation develops across blogs?

Understanding how modern learners are using new learning strategies for their own learning outside school is a powerful approach for teacher innovators to make sense of the new opportunities for school learning.

At the IOI Weekend teams will consider the new possibilities that modern learning strategies make possible for their classroom learning. 

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

 

Photo credit: Chess III by Till Westermayer CC By 2.0

Why small pedagogical changes are more likely to positively impact student learning.

When teachers make changes to their teaching and learning practice, the changes either positively impact student learning or they don’t. While there are things teachers can do in order to improve the chances that their changes will positively impact student learning there are no guarantees. Nor are there any guarantees that their changes will result in the high impact. The only way to know is to try…

It would seem that almost all pedagogical innovations don’t reap the desired or promised results. Such is the rate at which many schools implement innovations with great fanfare only for them completely disappear in a year or two.  Interactive whiteboards anyone? Thinking hats… direct instruction… student contracts…

In this climate it is hard for teacher innovators to keep fighting the fight, given the long history of over promising and under delivering, with many left asking, “what happened to the revolution.” If anything the explosion of innovative modern technologies only exasperates this problem, after all everything seems to offer so much promise, yet history suggests they will mostly under-deliver.

It is time for a new approach. An approach that learns from agile manufacturing and software design, an approach that rather taking big all in bets, prefers to take smaller steps of validating learning. An approach that even if it fails, will fail quickly and with little damage, but has the added advantage of resulting in learning that enables better future decisions to be made.

So what might a small change approach to pedagogical innovation look like?

1. Begin by identifying the crucial assumptions that are required to be true for the innovation to positively impact student learning.

For example, if you believe that collaborative writing digitally will increase the quality and creativity of student writing, then the crucial beliefs would be first that collaboration does increase quality and creativity, and secondly that writing digitally increases collaboration. We could just blindly believe this or we could test the assumptions, in order to be certain.

 

2. Use the simplest and quickest possible test to discover whether that assumption is accurate.

How might a simple and quick test be used to discover whether collaboration increases the quality of writing? Before the teacher bothered to set up blogs or Google Drive accounts, maybe a simple test might be to swap laptops periodically during the writing process. Sure it might not be an elegant use of technology but it might give us a better understanding of collaborative writing.

 

3. Identify the next biggest assumption that needs to be tested.

If the assumption has been proven to be correct, a teacher can then return to step one and identify the next most crucial assumption in order to test whether it is also true. In this example, a test might be constructed to see if and how blogging increases collaboration.  Of course, if the assumption proves to be false, rather than wasting all of the time implementing an initiative based on an ill formed assumption, the teacher can redesign and rethink the innovation.

 

At IOI Weekend Melbourne teachers will design and test their own small change innovation and learn how to identify and test the crucial assumptions that determine whether pedagogical innovations are successful.

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

 

Photo credit: Puzzle taken by Kevin Dooley CC By 2.0

The full stack school

In my previous post I discussed the idea of a full stack teacher, as a teacher who able to expertly respond to the opportunities presented by new innovation opportunities. What is the optimal school environment and culture that enables full stack teachers to improve their practice and increase student learning outcomes? What might a full stack school look like?

Full stack schools believe that school-based innovation is the best the driver for transformation. They believe that potential benefits of what is not yet known about learning and teaching far outweigh the benefits of what is already known. For this reason these schools favour exploring and testing new ideas and new technologies over what is already considered best practice.

Full stack schools believe that genuine transformation is only possible if they embrace new pedagogies and a shift in practice. They don’t simply seek to understand technological advancements and new learning strategies in the light of existing pedagogies but rather they are open to the possibilities that new pedagogies will need to be developed. They seek to understand how new ways of learning makes new pedagogies possible, for them everything is on the table and nothing is set in stone.

Full stack schools believe that pedagogical transformation impacts all facets of education and learning. When evaluating new pedagogical opportunities, full stack schools don’t limit their understanding to how innovation impact current assessments. They believe that innovation won’t just lead to improved learning outcomes, but also new learning outcomes. Innovation is seen to impact creativity, individually, and citizenship, not just curriculum outcomes.

Full stack schools believe the transformation will only happen when they develop a clear understanding of how learning happens in the digitally rich environments. They make new technologies available for their students and their teachers. They encourage open use as much as possible, they focus on the benefits as opposed to just the potential pitfalls. They encourage their students to embrace new technologies.

Full stack schools empower teachers to make the decisions about changes in pedagogical practice. They realise that teachers are best equipped to identify opportunities for pedagogical transformation. They understand that their teachers are best place to identify what is best for their students, as opposed to external experts and outdated research.

Full stack schools have a sophisticated pedagogical understanding beyond their unique context. They develop an inclusive understanding of learning which enables them to identify how learners are learning in innovative ways in other contexts. They understand that the big innovation opportunities are likely to be developed elsewhere. They then take these ideas and explore them within their context.

Full stack schools continuously refine and improve their practice, and ultimately transform the learning experiences of their students. Given the range of possibilities and the benefits of making good innovation decisions, full stack schools generally favour making many small improvements as opposed to putting all their apples in one basket. The big improvements they see are the result of many smaller positive steps.

Full stack schools measure and celebrate transformation by the qualitative growth in pedagogical quality, capacity and effectiveness. They focus on pedagogy and they measure the impact of their pedagogical innovation. This enables them to clearly articulate why and how their learning and teaching approach is powerful and effective.

 

At IOI Weekend Melbourne we will hold a short session for participants who are school leaders or are aspiring to be school leaders to share how the IOI Process can be used for successful school pedagogical transformation.

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

 

Photo credit: Concurs de castells Tarragona 2008 30 taken by Ferran Llorens CC By 2.0

Are you a full stack teacher?

Are you a full stack teacher?

There has been a bit of discussion lately around full stack employees, and employers, and this post quoting John Hattie as suggesting teachers should stay out of research. IOI Weekend if definitely aimed at full stack teachers, although we’ve been using Valve’s definition of a T-shaped person.

I strongly disagree that teachers should stay within their narrow set of expertise and away from research, firstly because it just isn’t practical, and secondly it isn’t consistent with how we’re seeing other industries understand and respond to innovation.

To suggest that teachers should stay stay out of research is to suggest that they deny their moral purpose. Teachers are the best placed to both recognise the opportunities for improvement in learning and teacher, and to assess the effectiveness of the interventions. A supposed lack of skills also misreads the new world we live, teachers like all other modern workers are constantly re-skilling themselves, thanks to online communities of practice and professional learning networks. To suggest that teachers are unable to develop research knowledge and skills to the level required to understand what works in their classrooms is no longer true, if it ever was.

Other industries are turning to full stack employees to reap the benefits of new ways of working. Prototyping, for one small example, as promoted by design thinking and learn startup has resulted in the need for small teams to be able to quickly produce full end to end solutions. No longer is it ok for individuals to have a narrow set but high level set of skills, workers in these teams now need to take on a wide variety of roles and understand roles previously outside of their main area of expertise. This enables these teams to be more agile, and therefore more likely to respond adequately to new opportunities. Modern full stack workers are now expected to be marketers, communicators, and workers who understand all major aspects of their field.

This is not to suggest that full stack employees have the same high level of knowledge and skills across all areas, but rather that their core area of expertise is complemented by a broader base. This is also not to suggest the core competency of a full stack teacher will ever be anything but learning and teaching!

So where once, the teacher’s competencies could be summarised by Shulman’s pedagogy and content knowledge dimensions, what are the competencies of full stack teachers?

Full stack teachers are learners first. Full stack teachers understand that they must constantly be learning, that things change fast, and that what is important to know also changes. They use online communities to learn with others, and they develop a personal learning network, that is wide and diverse.

Full stack teachers understand the learning shifts that are caused by modern technologies. Full stack teachers are highly skilled users of technology, they develop a professional online profile, their work practices change with new technologies, and they understand how new technologies relate to their underlying learning strategies.

Full stack teachers innovate in their own learning and teaching practice. Not content to simply reap the benefits of shifts in learning in their own learning, full stack teachers use innovative learning strategies and approaches in their own classrooms. They test and try new pedagogical ideas with their students, seeking to understand how innovation practices can best impact student learning.

Full stack teachers contribute to the depth and breadth of professional knowledge about learning and teaching. Not content to improve just their own learning and teaching practice, full stack teachers share their learning with others.  They attend and share at teach meets and other unconferences, they blog, they tweet, and present in more formal professional learning situations.

 

If you are, or if you aspire to be a full stack teacher we would love you to join us at IOI Weekend Melbourne.

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?

 

Photo credit: Pancakes taken by hedvigs CC By 2.0

Developing a more sophisticated understanding of learning and teaching

Developing a more sophisticated understanding of learning and teaching

Today’s post is another long excerpt from my forthcoming book on the IOI Process, it explores the components of the Modern Learning Canvas in detail. If you haven’t read Understanding the black box of learning and teaching you may want to read that post first.

The Modern Learning Canvas is inspired by Alexander Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas, which defines an ontology to describe the business model of a company or startup. Although the Modern Learning Canvas does not share any components with the Business Model Canvas, it does use the same format and process.

The Modern Learning Canvas attempts to take this idea but to describe the essential components and relationships of  learning. For this reason the domains of learning (Learner Role and responsibilities) and teaching (Educator Role and responsibilities) make up the two sides of the canvas, the process (which describes what the students and the teachers actually do) is split between the two sides.

The nine components chosen, coincidently the same number of elements in the Business Model Canvas, give a complete yet concise understanding the learning model. These inter-related elements can then serve as a repeatable pattern. Enabling successful learning and teaching practice to be replicated and achieve identical learning outcomes.

The canvas is a graphic organiser that allows educators to view their learning and teaching program and practice as a whole.

The Sequence Component

Every learning model must have a clearly defined Sequence. The set of (often sequential) activities that the learners undertake. The Sequence component of the Modern Learning Canvas defines how learners learn, and the repeatable process that makes learning successful. The Sequence describe what the learners actually do, and as such the Sequence should be defined from the learners point of view. Yes, what educators do is important and does need to be included but we describe it from the point of view of the learner. For example, “listening to or attending a lecture” describes an activity from the learner’s position, while “giving a lecture” describes the same activity from the educator’s perspective. For the learning model we choose to view learning from the learner’s perspective.

If the learning takes place in a classroom, the Sequence would be the major things that you would see in that classroom. The Sequence might describe the structure and process of a delivered lesson or series of lessons. How the learners and educators interact with each other. What steps that the learners undertake in order to complete the learning sequence. Essentially the Sequence component provides a generalised view of the essential steps of the lesson plan or unit of work. General, in that unlike a lesson plan they don’t go into specifics, as we are not interested in the object of the Sequence itself but rather the purpose of the Sequence. So rather than specifically noting that the teacher models nouns, we note that the teacher models a concept. In this way the learning model represents the generic learning event as opposed to a specific learning event.

The scope of the Sequence component defines the period of time that the learning model represents. A learning model, for instance might represent a learning event as short as 10 or 15 minutes, such as Guided Reading, or a learning event that lasts months, such as a major student project. Whatever the type of learning event, the Sequence should represent the whole learning event, and the complete learning model, regardless of the scope of the learning model, and represents it as succinctly as possible.

The Sequence might delineate:

– The distinct activities that the learners undertake. For example, the Early Years Literacy and Numeracy Model, used in primary schools across Australia defines three distinct activities: 1) the whole class modelled activity, 2) small group student activity, and 3) a whole class reflective conversation. These distinct activities have a finite time, a specific order, different activities and different goals. While it would be possible to undertake any of these activities in isolation, their effectiveness lies in their complementary nature.

– The distinct cognitive phases that the learners progress through while sense making. For example, consider the five phases of engagement, exploration, explanation, elaboration, evaluation that define the 5E Instructional Model. Rather than being separate activities like the Early Years Model, the five phases of the 5E Instructional Model would be applied to a single activity.

– The distinct sequence of steps that the learners undertake, such as the stages of a student-led project. A typical student-led project might consist of the following simplified steps: 1) Define the project, 2) Design the project, 3) Construct the project, 4) Present and celebrate the project.

We can also see from our examples that the Sequence can be linear, cyclic or a combination of the two. The Early Years Model is rigidly linear, with it’s whole, small, whole design, and with each activity having a set time allocated before moving on to the next activity. The project based learning approach by contrast has a much more fluid design. Unlike the Early Years Model, it is not necessary or expected for all learners to progress at the same speed or at the same time.

Questions to consider:

– Do all students progress through the stages of the Sequence together?

– What is the relationship between the different stages of the Sequence?

– Does personalising learning result in a different Sequence for individual students or cohorts? Are multiple learning models therefore needed in order to adequately describe the learning and teaching approach?

The Learner Role Component

Every learning model must clearly define the roles and responsibilities of the learners. The responsibility of decision making, or lack thereof, is a key component of the Learner Role of the Modern Learning Canvas. Do learners make decisions about who they learn with, what they learn, how they learn or where the learn?

While the Modern Learning Canvas is primarily concerned with formal learning models, we have chosen to label the two human roles as learners and educators, rather than students and teachers. This is because the canvas is designed to also allow us to visualise how anyone learns. It can be used to visualise how teachers learn. As a result the generic labels of learner and educators, are more appropriate than using the labels that describe institutional roles.

In highly teacher centred learning models the Learner Role is largely limited to following instructions and meeting requirements. Most learner responsibilities are likely to be in direct response to educator actions. For example, “completing activities as directed” and “seeking help as needed.”

In learning models where learning is “personalised by the learner” the Learner Role is likely to have much a greater active component, with responsibilities that relate to their own learning and the learning of their peers.

Learner Choice and Voice

What influence does the learner have over her learning? By enabling students to have a greater voice in their own learning, learners are able to influence how learning happens by sharing what they already know as opposed to relying on the educator to determine what the learner knows. This might include a greater voice in what they want to learn, how they want to learn and who they learn with. As learners exercise greater voice and responsibility for their own learning, they may also play a greater role in the learning of their peers.

Pace and Path

What decisions can students make about what they learn? The advent of modern technologies and the ubiquitous access to information has enabled learners to access learning beyond the traditional teacher and textbook. As such new learning models are arising where learners make greater decisions about what and how they learn. No longer restricted to a single source of information, learners are able to drill down to a greater depth of learning, or spread wide to a greater breadth of learning as needs and interests demand.

Questions to consider:

– What choices do learners make in their own learning?

– To what degree are learners able to influence what they learn?

– To what degree are learners able to influence how they learn?

The Strategies Component

Every learning model must clearly define the Strategies that learners use in order for their learning activities to be successful. Each distinct stage of the learning model Sequence requires the Learners to use a specific Strategy or range of Strategies in order for learning to be successful. What are the key learning skills that the learners must possess in order for the learning to be successful? What are the strategies that learners use for sense making, for project creation and for decision making?

Just as with the Sequence component, the Strategies component is described in terms of the learner’s, as opposed to the educator’s, point of view. Rather than describing “feedback as being given,” it is preferable to describe “feedback as being received.”  There are most likely a range of interchangeable strategies that the learners can and do use, including preferred and non-preferred strategies, with some of these interchangeable strategies no doubt being more effective that others. Depending on the purpose of the learning model, the model may want to describe the optimal Strategies in order to describe the preferred or goal state of the learning model. Alternatively, the actual (non-optimal) Strategies used might be described in order to paint a picture of what is actually happening, or why the learning model is not as effective as it should be.

The Strategies component may describe 1) sense making making strategies, 2) creation strategies, and 3) decision making strategies.

Sense Making Strategies

Sense making and knowledge construction is a crucial component in any meaningful learning. Traditionally, asking questions of the teacher has been the major way that students check their thinking as they learn, or checking facts or procedures in textbooks or other references. They might also use cognitive strategies to check and recheck their work, or clarify their understanding with their peers, especially those seated nearby.

As modern technologies force their way into formal learning, learners are increasingly using a wider range of people and resources in order to build knowledge and make sense of new concepts. In turn, these learners may need Strategies that enable them to identify and locate appropriate content, as well as be able to identify its worth and accuracy. Strategies that enable learners to confidently navigate physical and online environments, by searching, questioning and evaluating will be crucial for many learning models to be successful.

In the same way, we’re also seeing physical spaces and technology use transform reflection, feedback and intervention. As new forms of reflection, feedback and intervention are developed, the Strategies available for learners are widened. Learning models which place a higher value on peer support and peer learning, require learning Strategies enable learners to share their work and ideas with other learners in order to get feedback. To facilitate this we are witnessing a greater emphasis on group work and external connections, providing learners with expanded opportunities for reflection, feedback and intervention. Co-construction of knowledge and learning from the actions of others, builds upon the recognition that a diverse range of experiences and ideas leads to deeper understanding. Using modern technologies to increase the quality and quantity of interactions can learn to new learning opportunities.

Creation Strategies

In order for learners to move beyond superficial and perfunctory activities, Strategies that increase the depth, quality and creativity of their work are crucial. Traditionally, students work within a fairly narrow set of procedures, algorithms, and other strategies. For example, different types of writing are taught, defined, and assessed, by their strict genres. Narratives are created by establishing an orientation, a complication, and finally a resolution. Persuasive writing are created by an introduction, three supporting points, one opposing point, and a conclusion. Mathematics are traditionally taught the same, the teacher usually teaches a single specific algorithm for solving a particular problem, even though their may be a range of appropriate strategies from which students could use.

Modern technologies have an enormous potential to broaden the creation strategies that students use at school. For example, the volume of accessible authentic work that is produced outside of the classroom that students can now access exposes them to a wide range of creation strategies. Students, can in turn use these strategies as opposed to being limited to the strategies explicitly taught by the teacher, or defined in their textbooks.

At the same time, we are witnessing learning Strategies that move beyond project work that are individual and isolated tasks towards learning activities that build upon prior ideas, activities and products. Modern technologies and digital technologies make real time collaboration, reuse, and remixing simple.

Decision Making Strategies

For learning models that afford learners responsibilities for decisions in their own learning, the appropriateness of decision making Strategies are crucial for successful learning. Good learning decisions might be informed by understanding what others are doing in their learning. Traditionally decision making Strategies have also been limited [TODO: finish]

Of course, understanding what makes learning successful may not be limited to observing co-learners within the formal learning structure. Learners might identify what strategies and processes have been successful and unsuccessful in the past and using these experiences to make better decisions in the future. While undertaking a learning activity learners might observe and learn from the strategies and processes of their peers. Similarly, learners might monitor the progress of their own activities against some expected

Questions to consider:

– What strategies enable learners to construct knowledge with their peers?

– What strategies enable increase creativity of this learning product?

– What strategies enable learners to make better decisions about their learning?

The Enablers Component

Every learning model must clearly define the Enablers that make the learning Strategies possible. The Enablers component of the Modern Learning Canvas describe the necessary conduits that are required. Enablers recognise that physical spaces, and technologies play an important role in the successful use of the learning Strategies. In a balanced learning model, the key Enablers should correspond to the key learning Strategies, therefore finding the right combination of Enablers is crucial for a balanced learning model.

Flexible learning spaces, grouped tables, textbooks and concrete materials are examples of common Enablers. Specialist subjects would have their specific Enables. For example, sports equipment for the study of physical education, and art materials for the study of art, scientific calculators for the study of mathematics.

While not the only reasons why Enablers might be selected, it is useful when thinking about the types of Enablers learners might need in terms of: 1) quality and speed, 2) synchronous and asynchronous communication, and 3) simulation and authentic experiences.

Quality and Speed

Why do new learning technologies replace old ones? Usually it is because they offer advantages in the speed and quality (and if costs are also decreased that is a bonus as well). Whiteboards replaced blackboards across the schools of the western world in the 1980s because they were easier to write on and for students to read. Calculators enable students to skip time consuming mechanical calculations and focus on solving more complex problems. Word processors increase the quality of writing in numerous ways, redefining the drafting process, while spell checkers enable less confident spellers to broaden their vocabulary. Digital publishing and printing replaced hand made posters, by offering much higher quality results while greatly reducing the time required. This speed and agility in production enables learning to be more dynamic, with changes not having the same high costs associated with starting again or changing tact when using non-digital learning tools.

Synchronous and Asynchronous Communication

The advent of modern communication technologies means that formal education is no longer limited to purely synchronous communication. Where physical learning spaces are obviously limited to communication amongst learners who congregate at the same place and the same time, most online learning allow learners to communicate as and when they can, dropping in and out of the learning conversation. Other online communication tools increase the ease of sharing enabling new forms of communication based on activity and intentions. Location based application enable learners to easily share where they are. Photography applications on mobile devices enable learners to post photos of their learning activities. Of course it is not just modern digital technologies that enable asynchronous communication, consider the student diary and weekly newsletter that are used for communication between the school and the home.

Simulation and Authentic Experience

Other Enablers may allow students to undertake a simulated learning experience which might not otherwise be practical for a variety of reasons. Computer simulations, video chat, games, role playing, and virtual excursions allow students to explore scenarios and situations in a safe and controlled environment. In the play-based learning classroom, cash registers and price labelling gun enable children to simulate a real world shopping experience. Whereas online open communities of practice, as we’re now witnessing as professionals and experts learn together online, provide opportunities for students to participate in authentic learning experiences.

While there are many reasons why novice learners in particular may desire a traditional simulated learning experience, the walls that separate simulated educational experiences and authentic workforce experiences have never been so translucent. Open online communities of practice where experts and professionals use social tools such as Twitter to share new practice and ideas, removes the separation from what is learning and what is doing.

Questions to consider:

– How do the Enablers increase the quality learner products and interactions?

– How do the Enablers increase the speed of learner products and interactions?

– How do the Enablers increase the availability of learner products and interactions?

The Outcomes Component

Every learning mode should accurately describe the the object, the purpose and the outcomes of the learning. The purpose of a learning event might be to understand a specific concept, produce a learning artefact, learn a skill, demonstrate a competency, or be a combination of these. Mandated curriculum outcomes are the most obvious when we think about why learners undertake formal learning, comprising of sequenced curriculum with levels and progression points that are assessed via testing.

As an addition to traditional subject-based outcomes there is a trend towards valuing other skills and competencies, such as life-long learning skills, 21st Century skills, and social and emotional skills. For learning models that are more project based, the actual project itself is most likely viewed as an outcome. Where students produce an authentic and tangible end product as opposed to solely cognitive outcomes.

Knowledge, Skills and Competencies

What is the purpose of school learning? Is it to learn facts that can be recalled later when they are needed? Is it to obtain skills that are necessary to perform various tasks? Is it to build competencies which provide learners with the ability to perform specific actions. Or is it a combination of the three?

Knowledge is the facts, theories and principles that learners possess that enables them to understand relationships between ideas and concepts. Tacit knowledge gained through experiences rather than through memorisation or repeated practice, also might be included in this component. Skills describe the types of activities that learners can perform usually described in terms of accuracy and speed, and are acquired via repeated practice. This includes motor skills such as drawing or kicking a ball, as well as cognitive skills, such as problem solving and decision making. While competencies are usually understood to mean the ability to put into practice knowledge and skills in order to solve or complete an authentic complex problem.

Creativity and Individuality

Developing learners as creative individuals is also usually seen as a key aspect of being educated. Schools therefore might seek ways to develop confident students that take risks and try new approaches. Often creativity and individuality is linked to changing needs of the workforce due to technology-based innovation and globalisation. The need to develop learners who are creative, global life long learners who collaborate and cooperate with others in order to achieve what couldn’t otherwise be achieved.

Schools look for opportunities and approaches that allow students to follow their passions and explore their own ideas. A shift to inquiry-based learning is often justified by the requirement to develop students as creative individuals. Processes like design thinking give learners tools for creative problem solving, as schools increasingly see the creative process as a disciplined structured process, as opposed to a flash of brilliance.

Citizenship

The third often cited aspect of formal education is the development of learners as active citizens who contribute positively to their community and wider society. Leadership and civic skills are seen as crucial in order to propel the country forward. Learners who have a strong moral compass, who act with integrity and are honest. Values important to their country are promoted such as multi-cultural understanding. Linguistic, cultural and social understanding are viewed as being the fundamental to a richer country.

For these reasons schools often implement programs that focus on developing social and emotional intelligence in their students. They offer leadership programs and camps, and set up student councils. Charity work is also promoted in various ways, to enable students to understand and work towards solutions that address disadvantage, discrimination and other hardships.

Essential Learning and Non-Essential Learning

What is essential for learners to know and what isn’t? Does the non-essential learning that occurs as a by product of learning activities have any value?

Essential learning is the set curriculum that determines what and when learners learn what they do. They define the content and usually the sequence of what is covered in the learning and teaching. These essential learning outcomes might consist of outcomes from a single learning domain, such as mathematics, or from multiple learning domains.  A learning model might also consist of non-essential learning outcomes that it might be anticipated that some but not all learners learn. These might include deeper or more diverse learning outcomes than what are considered essential or core curriculum.

Questions to consider:

– What are the content, skills and ways of thinking that students need to develop?

– How is creativity and individuality developed and demonstrated?

– How is positive participation in groups and community encouraged and developed?

– Are there any non-essential or negotiated learning outcomes?

The Educator Role Component

A learning model should accurately describe the roles and responsibilities of the educator or the team of educators. It could be argued that the Educators Role is the most variable across learning models. In highly didactic instructional classrooms Educators have total control and make all of the decisions. At the opposite end of the education spectrum with counter-culture student driven education where Educators have little control and make few decisions about student learning. The reality is that for most learning models the Educator Role sits somewhere between these two poles.

In examining the Learner Role we explored learner voice and the pace and path of learning. Obviously in a balanced learning model the Educator Role is complementary to the Learner Role and vice versa. When describing the roles and responsibilities of the educator, it is useful to consider: 1) the value that the educator adds to the learning model, and 2) the values that the educator brings to the learning model.

Value

What value does the educator add to the learning model? What are the key roles and responsibilities of the educator? This might include in the setting of the curriculum, including the pace and the path of what and when learners learn, as well as the assessment of the learning. Is the educator an instructor, or a facilitator, a guide or a mentor, or does she take on a combination of these roles? Obviously the educator’s value is directly linked to the Pedagogical Beliefs of the learning model, which we’ll explore soon. Needless to say, that for learning models where learning is seen as a highly cognitive process, the educator will more than likely add value by questioning and prompting in order to guide learners towards new learning. Does the educator add value, by providing expert content knowledge, when resources don’t answer all of the learner’s questions? Does the educator add value by assisting learners to overcome sticking points and misconceptions? In exploratory learning models, the educator will more likely add value by assisting learners to make better decisions when determining their priories and actions.

Values

Having determined the value that the educator adds to the learning model, what is the role of the educator in setting the values or the culture of the learning model? After all in formal learning situations, it is the educator that has the ultimate professional responsibilities for the learning and everything else that happens, including the success, safety and well-being of all learners, but does the educator empower the learners to take on some of these responsibilities?

As such, values such as effort, doing your best and taking risks, as opposed to always being right might be instilled by the educator as the keys to successful learning. For learning models where learners have greater authority to make decisions, what are the values that the educator promotes in order for those decisions to be wise?

Questions to consider:

– How does the educator add value to the learner’s learning?

– Is it the educator who determines what is valued by the learning model?

The Policies Component

Every learning model has rules that define what learners can and can’t do. Some rules are clearly defined while other rules are implied. Schools might experience difficulties in maintaining policies that keep pace with changing technologies and how they are used both in and out of school. Often policies and rules are only apparent when they prevent a learning model from being successful. The policies component is therefore crucial, and may prevent a learning model from being adopted.

Some learning models have rules that change. Digital technologies in particular seem to pressure a school’s existing rules and policies. Fears for the safety of students who can now seemingly contact and be contacted by almost everyone in the world. Digital reuse and remixing, and online collaborative technologies challenge the notion not only of creativity but also originality. As schools modify their rules and policies do they adequately consider the impact that these rules have on their learning and teaching model?

External Policies

External policies are the rules and regulations that are set outside of the school and for which the school has no control over. These might include laws, rules set by education jurisdictions, and companies that own the technologies that they use. As such these policies might restrict learning activities that can happen at school. Rules around online safety and privacy might limit how students can interact outside of their school community. Department policies might limit the flexibility of the school timetable and curriculum by mandating when and for how long certain learning activities must occur. This might include the time spent on literacy, physical education or studying other languages.

School Rules

Schools rules might be in place across the whole school or may change depending on the class or the teacher. As such these rules most likely have more flexibility than external policies. Yet, changing school rules might be a difficult and lengthy process, and therefore limit the speed in which new learning models can be tested. Some learning models have rules that set the scope of what students can and can’t do. Don’t disturb the teacher. No talking. Ask for permission before you do something. Some of these rules are historical

Some learning models have rules that set the scope of what teachers can do. These might include school organisation, such as the way the school timetable and teaching loads are organised. There may be other more subtle rules, which promote teacher collegiality, such as keeping in line with what and how other teachers with similar roles are teaching, and keeping away from the content covered by others with different roles.

Questions to consider:

– What are the external policies and rules that enable learning to be successful?

– What are the internal school rules that enable learning to be successful?

The Culture Component

A learning model should accurately describe the Culture that enables learning and teaching to be successful. Culture and the social environment is intrinsically linked to how we learn. A student, for example, who moves to a new school where cultural norms differ from their previous experience will most likely have trouble adjusting. Similarly, the learning Strategies and Enablers that learners attempt to use might be incompatible with the learning Culture. Consider the effectiveness of the peer feedback and intervention in a learning environment that heavy with individual competition, how likely will learners who are in competition with each other be to assist each other?  Apprenticeships and project-based learning models are more likely to promote a Culture where learners seek help, while instruction-heavy learning models are less much less likely.

Culture dictates the way the learning community organises itself. In this way, culture shapes the learning and learning shapes culture. For the purposes of the Modern Learning Canvas it is tempting to see Culture as something that is singular and static, yet this may not paint the full picture. In the same way in that a learning model identifies only the most desired or most used learning Strategies, when describing the role that Culture plays in a learning model, it useful to identify the cultural influences that have the greatest impact. In may also be apparent that multiple competing Cultures exist within the learning model, particularly when there may be contrast between individual versus group goals and outcomes.

Beliefs

The shared beliefs about what makes the learning community effective has a large bearing on whether learning will be successful. In collaborative learning models, where key strategies are require learners to assist each other and learn together, there needs to complementary cultural beliefs where learners value the success of others as well as themselves. Some beliefs about learning might be detrimental to the success of a learning model.

Emotions

The emotions that learners possess also influence their learning activities and interactions. Usually these feelings reinforce their beliefs, other times what we believe about something and how we feel about it can cause tension. Copying and reusing the work of others is a prime example, we might feel differently when others use our ideas, as opposed to when we use their ideas! Similarly, the way the culture correlates with the policies component is crucial. How do learners and educators feel about the rules and policies that are in place?

Questions to consider:

– How does what we believe about effective learning enable learning to be successful?

– How does what we feel about effective learning enable learning to be successful?

The Pedagogical Beliefs Component

Every learning model needs the Pedagogical Beliefs that underpin it to be clearly identified. While I’ve left the Pedagogical Beliefs until last in the description of the Modern Learning Canvas, this is by no means a suggestion that it is the least important. In fact, a clear understanding of how learners learn, is crucial to the design, implementation and understanding of any learning model. The Pedagogical Beliefs define the whole learning model, and shine a light on all other components. In a balanced learning model, all eight other components should be justifiable in light of the stated Pedagogical Beliefs.

Given that the Modern Learning Canvas’ sole purpose is to visualise the complexity of a learning model and increase pedagogical intelligence, how might we explore our beliefs about pedagogy? At the heart of this is our beliefs about how people learn. For some, learning is deeply routed to action and hands on learning, for others learning is understood more as a cognitive activity. Capturing the heart of how we believe people learn, is the essence of describing the Pedagogical Beliefs component.

One broad approach when exploring pedagogical beliefs is Knud Illeris’ Three Dimensions of Learning. Illeris identifies content, incentive and interactions as crucial to understanding different learning theories, arguing that different theories of learning afford different importance to each of these three dimensions.

Content

For some, pedagogical beliefs around content, skills and competencies are the centre point of pedagogy. The ways in which successful knowledge is acquired, through scaffolding, correct sequencing and/or repeated practice underpin good learning and teaching. In these learning models, outcomes will be measured via testing and/or progression points, with a strong evidence on demonstrating learning.

Incentives

For others motivation and engagement are believed to have a bigger influence. This might include external praise and encouragement, rewards and achievements, and/or encouraging learners to pursue their passions. Feedback from peers, educators and from the learner themselves might be seen as crucial. Badges, stickers and other forms of external motivations might be used to value and celebrate progress.

Interactions

Still others believe that communication is the key to successful learning, that learning conversations and a variety of points of view enable learners to make sense and build their own mental models. The types of interactions will vary between learning models. Some learning models may have a strong Socratic approach, with learning conversations directed by the educator. Others may focus more on peer conversations with less emphasis on guided conversations and greater emphasis on shared discovery and meaning making.

Of course, it is more common that our pedagogical beliefs about the major influences of successful learning is a combination of content, incentives and interactions.

Questions to consider:

– What role does content, skill and competency acquisition play in order for learning to be successful?

– What role does motivation and incentives play in successful learning?

– What role does communication and shared sense making play in successful learning?

Teams at the IOI Weekend will use the Modern Learning Canvas to understand the black box of learning and teaching, and to understand, discuss and design innovation learning and teaching practice.

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

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How can educators better understand student development?

How can educators better understand student development?

In the previous post I described how understanding student development was crucial to understanding pedagogical effectiveness, as opposed to assessing against a curriculum. In this post I intend to unpack how the IOI Learner Development Profile enables teachers to form a more appropriate understanding of student development in order to better measure pedagogical effectiveness.

The IOI Learner Development Profile is based on Nikolai Veresov’s General model of genetic research methodology, and described four aspects of a learner’s development:

  1. Characteristics: What do these learners do? What do they do well? What don’t they do well?
  2. Motivations: What are the reasons why these learners want to engage in learning activities?
  3. Sources: What do these learners rely on in order for their learning activities to be successful? These might people, or concrete or even digital objects.
  4. Results: What are the results of learning activities? What is produced?

 

By exploring these four aspects, educators are able to construct a powerful developmental profile of their students.

I will now draw on the previous posts discussion on how students develop as mathematicians to demonstrate how each of these four aspects apply to the development of early and competent mathematicians, and illustrating their similarities and differences.

Early Mathematicians

development1

Early Mathematicians use concrete materials, enabling them to use precision when sorting, selecting and classifying as they complete puzzles and other maths based activities which would otherwise be beyond their capability. Their activities are almost always directed by an adult, and often linked to songs, rhymes, stories and games. Success is identified by their ability to engage in these activities and imitate their teacher. They begin to use basic mathematic concepts, such as ordering numbers.

Competent Mathematicians

development2

Competent mathematicians have now moved from a motive of enjoyment and imitation to a motivation which is focussed on learning mathematics. The start using mathematical symbols, logic and reasoning to make decisions and solve increasingly complex problems and puzzles. Their use of mathematical notation is often supported with concrete examples, such as blocks or other counters. However they often lack the confidence and the ability to deduce for themselves whether their thinking is correct or incorrect.  As such, they still rely on teachers and others to model and explain mathematical concepts, and identify when their mathematical reasoning is lacking.

 

As for the previous post, the purpose of this activity is not to accurately describe the developmental stages of student mathematicians but rather illustrate how the IOI Learner Development Profile is used. Again, while this example is drawing on a narrow single subject view of development, the IOI Learner Development Profile can also be used to develop a more holistic description of student development. By constructing a clear picture of the desired developmental process of your students, and yes you may need multiple profiles, a teacher is much better placed to understand and measure how their chosen pedagogical approach is effective.

In future posts, we will explore how we compare the development profile with out learning and teaching model in order to understand, design and predict how pedagogical innovation improves pedagogical effectiveness.

 

You can download the paper version of the IOI Learner Development Profile, which is creative commons licensed

Teams at the IOI Weekend will use the IOI Learner Development Profile to understand and measure pedagogical effectiveness.

A free fast paced three-hour taster on Friday night will provide you with a shorter experience of the IOI Weekend. This is a free event and will be held at:

May 15th 6PM – 9PM at New Era Melbourne
Level 2 141 Capel Street North Melbourne VIC 3051

Over three hours we will give you a taste the IOI Process highlighting:

  • IOI Pedagogical Quality Framework,
  • IOI Learner Development Profile,
  • the Modern Learning Canvas,
  • how pedagogical quality, effectiveness and capacity can be measured,
  • and get you on your way to develop an Innovation Thesis.

Please RSVP to if you intended to join us to help us with catering (light finger food and drinks.)

Your Email (required)

Bringing a friend ?