Learning and Teaching

Lectures for BA(Ed) Year 1: Education in Practice Lecture 1:

School Learning and Teaching Effectiveness
Available at:

http://www.dur.ac.uk/r.j.coe/learnteach

Dr Robert Coe 5.11.01

Learning and Teaching      School learning and teaching effectiveness Individual differences in learning Classroom strategies: cooperative learning Classroom strategies: formative assessment Trying to improve school learning: theory and practice Core text: Croll and Hastings „Effective Primary Teaching‟ .

A number of models of school learning have tried to understand what factors influence learning. trying to infer good practice is problematic. .Lecture summary Theories of learning and development have implications for teaching. However.

detentions. demerits. praise  Bad behaviour gets attention  “Assertive Discipline”: explicit rewards and consequences Behaviour learning vs intellectual learning .Theories of learning (1)  Skinner  Conditioning: reinforcement and reward Behaviour is shaped and maintained by its consequences   Implications for teaching:  Merit marks.

Concrete operational. Pre-operational. Formal operational Implications for teaching:  Readiness  Curriculum design  Teaching methods assimilation/accommodation Implications for teaching:  Discovery learning  Create disequilibrium  accommodation  Focus on mistakes  Schemas   .Theories of learning (2)  Piaget  Stages of development   Sensorimotor.

Adapt teaching to the learner‟s success and failure  Scaffolding:  . but on capacity to make use of help.Theories of learning (3)  Vygotsky  Social learning  „Child as apprentice‟  Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD)  Achievement depends not just on current ability.

Theories of learning (4)  Bandura: Social Learning Theory  Reinforcement as information  Response not automatic  Observational learning: watching others      Paying attention Coding observed behaviour Retaining memory Reproducing behaviour accurately Motivation .

iconic.Learning in school  Bruner   Modes of representation: enactive. symbolic Spiral curriculum: „any subject can be taught effectively in some intellectually honest form to any child at any stage of development‟ „reception/discovery‟ „rote/meaningful‟ „Advanced organisers‟  Ausubel    .

Theories of school learning (1)  Carroll (1963) Five factors:      Aptitude Ability to understand instruction Perseverance Opportunity Quality of instruction .

Theories of school learning (2)  Slavin (1984) Alterable variables (QAIT):     Quality of instruction Appropriate levels of instruction Incentive Time .

Theories of school learning (3)  Walberg (1980) Nine factors:          Student age/developmental level Ability/prior achievement Motivation Quantity of instruction Quality of instruction Classroom environment Home influence Peer group Mass media .

Which variables are most important?  Based on research and expert opinions (Wang et al. 1993):           Classroom management Metacognitive Cognitive Home environment / parental support Student / teacher interactions Social and behavioural Motivation and affective Peer group Quantity of instruction School culture .

Implications for teaching  Are theories useful?    Theory: helps to account for / predict All teachers have „theories‟ Formal theories have implications “I can‟t get him to sit still and pay attention” “I have been over it again and again. but they still don‟t get it” “I think I‟ll just consult the research literature on this”  Can research help teaching?    .

 .  Research is descriptive.  … but even when it is relevant. and seldom evaluates feasible solutions All schools/classrooms are different anyway Objectives of teaching are not well-defined … but even when it does.  … and besides.Problems with ‘researchinformed’ teaching  Research is inaccessible Research is irrelevant to practice … but even when it is accessible.

An example of useless research (Hay McBer)         Set high expectations Are good at planning Employ a variety of teaching strategies Have a clear strategy for pupil management Manage time and resources wisely Employ a range of assessment methods Set appropriate homework Keep pupils on task (For which the DfEE paid £3m*) .

for instance. that classroom disruption reduces effectiveness. Some may just be incidental to it or even the consequence of it. But what comes first. It is no revelation.00 .Is it causation or just correlation? “It remains to be seen how many of the teacher characteristics HayMcBer associates with pupil success are among the real causes of that success.6. the chicken of good behaviour or the egg of satisfying learning?” TES 23.

Can the variables be altered? “And how far can an individual teacher alone raise pupil aspirations or produce good order without the wider support of home and school?” TES 23.00 (cont.) .6.

and recognise cause and effect “The more variables there are for the teacher to analyse. Demonstrates an ability to think through an implication. Considers several possible causes for any given situation. Analyses the reason for something.Characteristics teachers must show to pass the ‘threshold’ Analytical Thinking The ability to think logically.” Shows that he or she can analyse the reasons for actions and behaviour. the greater the sophistication of thought required to see cause and effect. break things down. Demonstrates consideration of multiple implications. From the Hay McBer report .

H av in g a to p Every lesson Once a term Once a month Once a fortnight Never or almost never 1 2 3 4 6 Once or twice 5 a week Teaching is more complex Average frequency of activities in class Geology departments ic pr W es or en W ki W ng or te o ki d fro rk ng by i fro m p ng th th e re m r te ou vi pr o gh ach ev us er io ex ex us am ex am pl s a Pr e (w H ep ms av ith s (e ar in he xa g in cl g lp m as ) es co s s nd ay di sc ns s or us ) si re o p ns H or av ts le in R d g ea b di di s c y th ng e us te si M ac on H ak av he s i n i i U r g n ng si o g ng w r n o o up te du n n s s ot pl d e ic ic s at t ed from ate d no le te ss U s si on ( ng Do s i ng han au do p d M ra ut ak io o ct s) ic rv in al g i s w us ua e l m ork of at IT er (c ia R Li o e ls st m se en p a u rc in te Pr g hi ng rs) to es W an en a to ot tin ork pi he i ng g c rs w i o n t r ud G pa k iv to en R ir in e t t R he s pr ec ceiv g h es cl el ei in as p en vi g t s ng o tin he a g lp in n ot w di fro or he vi m k du r st an al u ot he he den lp t rs fro Pr tu m od de th uc nt e in t e g ac or he ig r in al w or k .

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