Factors Influencing Learning

Week 8 (5/3 – 5/9)
Textbook: Educational
Psych Textbook (Ch. 4 – Factors Influencing Learning)
Video: What does it feel like to have a learning
disability? (“F.A.T. City” Workshop)
Read: Why grades are not the key to achievement
and answer
Read: Vygotsky’s approach to special education
1. In Ch.4 of our Educational Psychology Textbook (NOBA), they discuss a variety of factors that can help students retain information and learn more effectively. Can you name some of these factors? Have you tried using any of these to help you study? Which was most effective for you, and why?
2. Based on Ch. 4, how would you best design a computer program to help someone learn a new foreign language? Think about some of the principles of learning outlined in this module and how those principles could be put into “rules” in a computer program.
3. In the video “What does it feel like to have a learning disability? (F.A.T. City workshop),” what techniques does Rick, the workshop leader (and an expert in learning disability) use to make the attendees feel what the experience of having a learning disability? Do you feel these were effective or too extreme? Why or why not?
4. In Alfie Kohn’s video on “Why Grades Should Not Exist,” what are some of his key arguments against relying on grades as feedback or motivation for students? Do you agree with these arguments? Why or why not?
Week 10
Read: “The Risks of
Rewards” (Alfie Kohn)
The 3 Needs of Students, and Why Schools Don’t Meet Them
Read: NYC Opt-Out
and answer:
1. In the article “The Risks of Rewards,” what evidence does Alfie Kohn use to build his case that rewards can often have a negative impact on children’s learning, motivation, and development? Do you agree with him based on your own experience as a teacher or student? Why or why not?
2. In the video, “3 Needs of Students and Why Schools Fail to Meet Them (Alfie Kohn),” what are some ways that schools fail to address the psychological needs of students? Does what Alfie shares match your experience with schools? How do you think we can do better?
3. You read the article “NYC Opt Out (how and why to opt out)” and watched the video on the NY State Opt Out movement
Had you heard of the Opt Out movement before this week? What do you think about this movement, and what questions do you have about it? Could you see yourself opting a child out of tests, or encouraging parents to do so? Why or why not?
Please read the introduction to Paolo Freire’s “The Banking Concept of Education” below to get a sense of some background to his work and some of this main ideas. Then, please discuss the four questions at the end about this article.
Paulo Freire–“The Banking Concept of Education”
“The Banking Concept of Education” is chapter two in a book called Pedagogy of the Oppressed, published in 1968.
Author: Paulo Freire, from Brazil, 1921-1997
Ideas in Pedagogy of the Oppressed
Freire’s ideas are called “liberation theology.” They’re a mixture of Marxism and Christianity.
Freire was greatly influenced by Frantz Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth. Fanon wanted to educate oppressed populations (for example, natives of countries in Africa and the Americas that had been colonized by Europeans) in a new and anti-colonial way, not just pass on European tradition.
Some of Freire’s main ideas include:
Conscientization–the process of becoming conscious of problems in our culture, particularly in the symbols that we’re getting from our culture. When the poor and colonized do this, they can stop believing the negative view of themselves that the imperial culture is trying to give them.
Reconstructivism–the process of rebuilding our ideas of the world into an equal, democratic view, after we break down the old imperial view of the world.
1.) What is “narration sickness”? What are two problems with a teacher narrating knowledge to a class, according to Freire? Do you agree, based on your own experiences in education? Why or why not?
2.) Freire writes:
“In an oppressive system, students are ‘receptacles’ to be ‘filled’ by the teacher. The more completely she fills the receptacles, the better teacher she is. The more meekly the receptacles permit themselves to be filled, the better students they are.”
How is education in this oppressive system like depositing money in a bank? Do you think this is a good way to learn? What might be a better way to learn?
3.) What do you think Freire means when he writes that students are “alienated” like slaves? Have you ever felt alienated or disconnected from learning in school? What do you think caused this feeling?
4.) Freire writes:
“The more students work at storing the deposits entrusted to them, the less they develop the critical consciousness which would result from their intervention in the world as transformers of that world.”
What is “critical consciousness” for Freire? How could developing this critical consciousness help people change society for the better?
research group project
your group’s collaborative work, and your 1-page reflection]
topic : Educating students with disabilities
What was
the topic that your CL

Teaching Students with Disabilities

“I found this video to be extremely accurate in describing the realities of team teaching. I myself, witnessed great team teaching in elementary school where the two teachers would share the room and have the same exact schedule but in middle school and high school the special ed teacher was more of a second teacher and the gen ed teacher ran the show. This exposes the systemic problems of co-teaching where in middle school and high school it becomes very difficult to team teach. “G group investigated?
What interests
you about this topic?
materials did you and others find about this topic?
What did
you learn from your own and your group members’ research?