By Terry Heck
It is not the thought behind an idea that will bother us, but the effect of the idea.
#edtech. Content-based academic standards. PLC video streaming. Data usage. It is imperative to be research-oriented in our behavior. Distance learning. Separation. Social media in the classroom.
None of these ideas are good or bad in themselves. They are just ideas. They gather in value-neutral-isolation. We only charge them when we internalize them – think of them using our unique schema, visualize them in our familiar situations, or otherwise make them comfortably relevant to avoid cognitive inconsistencies.
By internalizing them, we smooth out their rough edges for easy use. Who wants to feel that they have an incomplete understanding of something? At the moment, though, the concept has lost its original shape. This is the same difference between a mishapen একটি a real dog and a clown brown and white balloon.
Moving from an idea or concept to something we understand in our own terminology is no small change. And comes with a loss. By internalizing an idea, we also associate emotions with them – optimistic optimism, shaking skepticism. Or indifference.
For example, I like the concept of personalized learning, so I associate it with positive emotions that can lead me to cognitive distortion, where I over-simplify its effectiveness or undermine our continued misconceptions about its potential in education. I champion it, but ‘it’ (personal education, in this case) is just an idea. This + context is different. This is chemistry.
Think of it as a pattern: The idea->Mixture->Effect.
The idea alone is only useful as a visual or artistic subject. As an academic or intellectual practice. Funny conversation or good old-fashioned bench racing as a topic.
Integration is a matter of design and engineering (designer and engineer are two minds of a teacher).
Ideas, integration, and effects are all things, of course, but it all repeats itself: one affects the other, the concept affects the integration, the integration affects the effect, the effect shines a new light on the concept. Maybe then, instead of a linear The idea–->Mixture->EffectWe can think of something more like a triangle instead:
Change our thinking
And instead of “this is a good one The idea? “, We can ask other questions:
What is it? What are its parts? Does it look like the whole thing?
What is it doing?
How is it working?
How much does it cost? Impact? Change?
How does it support teachers নীতি making teaching a creative and intellectual and humanitarian endeavor rather than a policy, method, and survival?
What are its effects-and not the narrow effect of achieving a single goal, but the macro effect on an object in its place of birth?
In education, these can be addressed as follows:
Has the standardization of content in a narrow range of content done for education?
How does an unpleasant system of education for children work because they want to be able to do good, empathize with the people around them and be whole people capable of digital and physical citizenship?
See more What should a school do?
How has the lag in education policy and vocabulary affected the ability of families and communities to serve by their own education?
How do teachers respond when asked to be ‘research-oriented’? Does it encourage them to pour out peer-reviewed journals from emerging academics to bring only “proven” methods into their classrooms? Or it sends them to Google to search ‘Research-based instructional strategies‘Where do they find the same 6-8 examples that become dumb and lifeless in their next lesson plan because that’s what they were told?
Let’s expand our perspective. Let’s pretend for a moment that we will finally be able to design a system of teaching and learning where every single student will be able to master every academic standard their local government sets for them. What is the effect of this system? This domination? What do we assume about values and their mastery? That they will create a nation of critical thinkers who do amazing things?
And this system – what are we guessing about it and its effects? What will it ‘do’ to children? When they graduate from this fictional machine, will they have a strong sense of self-knowledge, wisdom, space and family heritage? Critical thinking, work, and love? If not, okay?
Is that even the intended effect we are looking for? If not, what? We should know, shouldn’t we?
Concepts as effects
An inverted classroom is good, yes? 1: 1? Maker education? 3D printer in the library? Yes, as an idea. So what are they doing? What is their effect? The idea is always neutral.
A ‘good idea’ is to market based on emotion and appearance. How has it been implemented, and more critically, what are its implications? Technology. Workshop based P.D. Snark on Twitter. That was the grouping strategy you planned to use tomorrow.
And be careful about the metrics or evidence you’re looking for. This new questioning technique may involve 65% more students than students but may prevent students from wrestling with questions on their own. The same goes for teacher self-directed PDs, 3-minute hallway switches, or labeling a school as ‘good’ or ‘bad.’ A ‘good idea’ to say something can only be accepted if we go straight to the conversation about integration, and then it works.
“What’s the effect?” A complex question that deserves our thinking and the most careful talent. But one of the more worthy of our collective affection may be, “What is it doing to our children when they want to be more human – to grow intellectually, creatively and in wisdom and love?”
Then we can crane our necks further down than we used to, so that we can see where we – and they – are heading together.