Quote: “Unlike a classroom where a teacher controls the lecture, the organic communities that emerge through collectives produce meaningful learning because the inquiry that arises comes from the collective itself” (Thomas and Seely Brown).
I chose this quote because I thought it beautifully demonstrates the nature of collectives versus the nature of typical classrooms.
Question: The chapter speaks to how a collective - by its very nature - cannot be refocused and harvested for specific educational goals. Is there a way to encourage the formation and growth of collectives where students to learn from each other in school and specifically in your classes?
Connection: Ahah! I realized that everything we have been doing in this class has been toward the goal of establishing collectives :)
Epiphany/Aha: I appreciated the authors’ addressing the idea of harnessing collectives for specific learning goals. However, I think providing the context in which collectives can form in my classes is something important that I need to incorporate in my classroom more actively and purposefully.
Quote: “... collectives change and shift in relation to the world around them, and new technologies are making it easier to access them. As a result, collectives are beginning to emerge throughout the arc of life - from preschool to old age. Learning in an age of constant change simply never stops. In the new culture of learning, the bad news it that we rarely reach and final answers. But the good news is that we get to play again, and we may find even more satisfaction in continuing the search” (Thomas and Seely Brown).
I chose this quote because it basically sums up the answer to my question from the previous chapter.
Question: I can see how learning in the context of collectives is more meaningful to students… However my question is how can you encourage students to form their own collectives within your class while at the same time showing them the importance of still trying and applying themselves when faced with “normal” classroom situations?
Connection: I really liked the section about blogs. I have honestly used my blog more as a personal means to fulfil requirements but I am beginning to shift my thinking to what I want my blog to say that is meaningful beyond just to myself.
Epiphany/Aha: This chapter answered my question from the previous chapter. Students form collectives usually on their own… but in high school students may need encouragement to feel the freedom to form collectives because of social pressures/cliques.
Quote:“With just a small shift, from answering questions to asking them, inquiry emerges as a tool for harnessing not only the passion of students but also the stockpile of tacit knowledge that comes from a lifetime of experience doing the things that have become second nature to them” (Thomas and Seely Brown).
I chose this quote because I love how it describes how inquiry engages both the passion and the tacit knowledge of students. I have thought a lot about engaging the passion but not as much time thinking about how to engage students’ tacit knowledge.
Question: I love the concept of inquiry based learning. How do you incorporate meaningful inquiry-based learning (rather than simply occasionally adding an exercise or two in inquiry-based learning) into a classroom when you have the constraints of the things students must learn by the time they are finished with your class?
Connection: I really connected with this chapter because I have spent a lot of time reflecting on inquiry based learning in my methods class. I have tried to incorporate small inquiry-based projects into my class this semester but they tend to feel contrived and incoherent because they have been spread out inconsistently through the semester.
Epiphany/Aha: Inquiry engages not only students’ passion but also their “stockpile of tacit knowledge.” It is a way to encourage students both to connect what they are learning to their lives but also to connect their lives to their learning!