http://www.ted.com/talks/susan_cain_the_power_of_introverts.html

Now this is what many introverts do, and it's our loss for sure, but it is also our colleagues' loss and our communities' loss. And at the risk of sounding grandiose, it is the world's loss. Because when it comes to creativity and to leadership, we need introverts doing what they do best. A third to a half of the population are introverts -- a third to a half. So that's one out of every two or three people you know. So even if you're an extrovert yourself, I'm talking about your coworkers and your spouses and your children and the person sitting next to you right now -- all of them subject to this bias that is pretty deep and real in our society. We all internalize it from a very early age without even having a language for what we're doing.

Now, to see the bias clearly, you need to understand what introversion is. It's different from being shy. Shyness is about fear of social judgment. Introversion is more about, how do you respond to stimulation, including social stimulation. So extroverts really crave large amounts of stimulation, whereas introverts feel at their most alive and their most switched-on and their most capable when they're in quieter, more low-key environments. Not all the time -- these things aren't absolute -- but a lot of the time. So the key then to maximizing our talents is for us all to put ourselves in the zone of stimulation that is right for us.


- Susan Cain

Objective: Susan Cain creates a beautiful theatre for presenting her arguments on what introverts are and how they function the best. She equates a lot of her findings to her own real life events and the effects those events had on her growing up creating the woman she is today. I didn’t realize that nearly third to half of the population are introverts, making us think why do we press so hard for collaborative work and open concepts.

Reflective: This TED talk is quite informative and made me wonder, how I can use what I have learned to start creating environments that cater to both introverts and extroverts. Up this point of my teaching career, I had no idea that this character trait even existed, much less lesson plans need to be created to be inclusive of introverts. I can see how I am an introvert as well. I like to work alone and do all my research in solitude. I suppose just because I like group work when in classes, that action alone doesn’t make me an introvert. Coming up with deep thoughts by myself is most likely the leading factor that allows me to categorize myself as an introvert. Looking at my students, those poor guys that are introverts, I pushed them fairly hard to fit into group environemtns thinking that learning happens equally in both character groups.

Interpretive: Looking back at history and being aware of introverts, it makes sense to explore the notion that we need to be aware of different personality traits, some our great leaders were introverts. This doesn’t mean that they are loners, it means that they formulated their thoughts and ideas in isolation. Brainstorming in large groups wasn’t for them, once the idea was formulated then coming together in a group meant possibly seeing their ideas to fruition or getting further input in improving their creations.

We also need to be careful with introverts in an all-inclusive society. Not everyone wants to play together, let’s be aware of each other’s needs and respect their personality style. I suppose the best thing would be to identify personality type first, then create environments that fosters that student’s success.

Decisional: Wow, this was an eye opener for me. I need to harness the energy from introverts and allow them privacy needed to be creative. Once their thoughts are formulated then a further building onto the initial idea can take place if needed. I am also feeling better about myself knowing why I created in isolation but needed additional help in completing my projects. I never liked the creation stage in groups.

It’s interesting that I was forcing some of my students to learn in group environments as the current trends in the education system tend to favor collaborative learning, I’ve ruled out up 50% of my learners by doing so. Some thoughts will need to be placed in allowing for introvert personalities as I create some new lesson plans in the future. This means I would rethink the initial brain storming, mind mapping process and have an exercise for introverts. I will start by asking leading questions during initial icebreaker exercises to draw out personality types.


David Silverman (1993). “Beginning Research”. Interpreting Qualitative Data. Methods for Analysing Talk, Text and Interaction. Sage Publications
 
 
Hattie focuses on the role of the teacher as the deciding factor in the outcome of the learners. Sure things like homework, facilities and health make a difference but the single largest factor is the educator.

With continuous feedback to learners and self-reflection on improving the course and delivery methods, learners can overcome challenges to learning. 

Hattie’s research shows that the teacher is the catalysts for change and does make a difference in the learner’s lives.

 
 
This is a Prezi that I created to demonstrate how the PBL method can be easily utilized in any classroom environment. Problem based learning creates a very engaging atmosphere and can be fun for the learners and educators. In automotives there is a natural element of problem based learning as most of the learners equate their learning to customer concerns.

Why use Prezi? This presentation has voice over and I was allowed a five minute time limit. After the voice over, I was at nine minutes. My thought turned to using a form of media that allowed the users to have control of the presentation, speed through commons areas and revisit complex areas. This makes it very difficult to determine the eventual length of the presentation. 
Prezi is a great online tool for creating presentations, I find it easy to use and easy to share, just make sure the internet connection is suitable. 

Prezi works best once launched and clicked to full screen. Use the left arrow at the bottom to advance through the slides.

 
 
I was a big fan of the notion that there are different learning styles.
As I experiment and research academic findings, it turns out that learning styles don't really exist.
Knowing this now makes it easier for me to create lesson plans. I used to incorporate elements of different learning styles in all my lessons. 
Most of my lessons contain large visual elements and large kinesthetic elements. I believed that auditory should be reserved for large lecture formats, I am not a big fan of this format.
Since starting my research I am starting to discover that it's not necessarily bad to have some lessons mainly in auditory format. Lesson plans should be matched to the activity and environments. 


So it's more important to match activities to the subject matter being studied not necessarily the myriad of learners present in a classroom.
 
 
This is good stuff on brain based learning. As I started researching this method, I kept wondering about assessment and who designs the assessment methods. 

I found this attached article that spoke to me.

It's from University of Lethbridge and has a quick summary of brain based learning. Most of which have been discussed here already but I have copied a recommended assessment method below.

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Assessment – achievement and motivation “In a brain compatible classroom, assessment both measures achievement and provides motivation” (Goldberg & Stevens, 2001, p. 125). If teachers wish to establish a classroom in which brain-based learning can thrive, Caine, Caine, McClinitic and Klimek (2005) and Caufield, Kidd and Kocher (2000) all suggest allowing students to create some of their assignments and rubrics for marking. Assessment should be designed to fit the students, not vice versa (Caine et al., 2005). Erlauer (2003) suggests that because students are learning through a preferred intelligence, they should in turn demonstrate their knowledge through a preferred intelligence or learning style. Immediate, constructive feedback increases motivation and makes students aware of how to improve their work. As with teaching strategies, effective teachers are more likely to use an appropriate variety of assessment techniques in a brain-based classroom.

Retrieved from: https://education.alberta.ca/apps/aisi/literature/pdfs/bbased_learning.pdf

 

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