Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Observation and Description Essay

1. Explain a learning theory observed in the video.  In the field trip, experiential learning was applied by the facilitator. In experiential learning, students are immersed in a real environment and exposed in a real situation. Experiential learning is based on constructivist theory whereby the learners play active roles in assimilating knowledge onto their existing mental framework and apply their school learned knowledge to the real world (Henley, 1994). In the video, students work with a professional to investigate and learn about nature at Fermilab. Students used magnifying lenses and their senses to see, smell, hear, and feel the plants that they were holding. Initially, students worked in pairs, share their knowledge and make comparison. Then, they worked in groups and write down what they have observed. Thus, the learners have applied the knowledge and concepts that they have learned in the classroom about living things to a real environment at Fermilab. Through the exchange of knowledge and observations among members of the group, they became active learners and teachers. Experiential learning was formulated by Carl Rogers who claimed that significant learning takes place when the subject matter is relevant to the interest of the learner and when external threats are at a minimum (Dover, 2008; Kearsley, 2008). The teacher must set a positive climate for learning, use learning resources, balance intellectual and emotional component of learning and share feelings and thoughts with the learners (ibid). Learning about nature, the prairie, wetlands and the diversity of life took place in Fermilab, a natural environment. Before students were taken around Fermilab, the facilitator gave them some rules to follow to protect the environment and everyone in the area. Hence, there was a positive climate for learning, the experience was significant to the students and the external threat to learning was kept at a minimum. b. Describe the observed teaching situation in terms of group characteristics, seating arrangement, and any additional criteria necessary to present the setting of the learning environment. The teaching and learning process took place at Fermilab where students observed the plants, animals and wetlands to determine the diversity of life in the environment. Initially, all students sat on the grass and work in pairs in observing the plants. They were also holding their magnifying lenses as they listened to the instructions of the facilitator. Each pair consists of a boy and a girl of the same age and grade level. They interacted with their teammates and discussed what they have observed. Then they worked in groups, reflected on what they have observed and shared what they have learned. There were two boys and two girls in each group. c. Describe the observed teacher-to-student interactions. Students were attentive to their teacher. When the facilitator says, â€Å"I want you to look at the plant, smell the plant, listen to the plant, shake it†¦see if it rattles†, students who were working in pairs got their magnifying lenses to look closely at the plants and follow the instructions of the teacher. Everyone was engaged in the activities. In another scene, a small group of students were listening attentively to a professional as she speaks about the different environments that they will observe and investigate. She also provided some rules that they need to observe to protect the environment and everyone at Fermilab. While the facilitator speaks before the students, there was a female teacher who was standing beside her. d. Describe the observed student-to-student interactions. In the first activity, a buddy system was established whereby students work in pairs while seating on the grass and observing the plants. A boy and a girl were interacting with each other and exchanging knowledge on what they have observed. In another activity, there were four students in each group. They were taking down notes on the plants that they were investigating. As students work in groups, peer teaching was established as groupmates do some discussions and kept their voices low so as not to disrupt the other groups. They were all doing their activities in an orderly manner. Analysis, Exploration, and Reasoning a. Describe the purpose of the observed lesson. The objective of the lesson is to learn about nature and to determine the diversity of life in different environments through active learning and immersion. Through experiential learning, students were able to explore the plants, animals and different environments in Fermilab through the use of their sense of sight, touch, smell, and hearing. The lesson also aimed to provide a hands-on experience on a real or natural environment instead of looking at the pictures, reading about nature and environment and staying in the classroom. The activities gave students the opportunity to work with other students and share their knowledge and observation with other members of the group. The activities also develop the social skills of the students. The activities aimed to foster cooperation as students need to follow rules to protect themselves, other people, nature, animals, and the environment. b. Describe a teaching strategy implemented in the observed lesson. Experiential learning is a strategy used by teachers to incorporate learning theories into lessons. As the students learn about nature and the diversity of life in their field trip, they will be able to construct their own knowledge about the protection of nature from what they have observed and experienced at Fermilab. Through experiential learning, the theory of constructivism can be applied in which learners actively build knowledge and skills, construct new ideas or concepts based upon their current and past knowledge (Bruner, 1990). Students have learned about plants and animal life in the classroom, through their readings or viewing of films or television programs. Now that they have an actual experience of nature’s life in Fermilab, their knowledge and experience are added to what they have already learned. Hence, they will be able to construct their own ideas on how to protect and care for nature and animals. c. Analyze the teacher’s possible purpose for implementing a teaching strategy observed in the video. The possible purpose of implementing experiential learning is to make each learner directly involved with nature and the diversity of life in different environments at Fermilab. The activities whereby students work by pairs or by groups and learn from one another will foster retention and comprehension of the subject matter because they learn through meaningful learning and teaching experience. The experiential activities make learners directly experience, discover and appreciate nature and environment through the use of their senses. Experiential learning also allows students to reflect on their experience, and generate understanding and transfer of skills and knowledge. d. Describe the level of student engagement with the observed lesson In the video, there was a high level of students’ engagement in the activities. This was evident in their participation to all the activities as they work in pairs and in groups in sharing their knowledge and observations on the plants that they were investigating. The students were listening and following the instructions of their teacher. When the teacher says, I want you to look at the plants, smell the plants, etc. , students who were working in pairs, got hold of the plants and observed them closely with their magnifying lenses. They were also attentively listening to the professional who was explaining about the environments and the diversity of life that they will examine within the Fermilab and the rules that they need to follow.

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