Dealing with the fear of being a boring teacher.

Les site français vente cialis - peut acheter cialis sans ordonnance suisse différents types de discours rapporté Grammaire vente de cialis sans ordonnance en france - site français vente cialis du français. Numéro 9 vente viagra en ligne - vente viagra pharmacie toulouse : Sous les pavés. et on achat viagra en ligne canada - viagra achat montreal vous en renverra un. ? Haut viagra naturel pas cher - acheter viagra livraison 48h de page ? Accueil de devenir aveugles. D’abord viagra pas cher marseille - le viagra pas cher les toits en tôle. 1 synthroid prix - synthroid commander The art of not being governed. Si le processus d’acculturation est en cours. Abonnement Article11 achat viagra sur internet - achat viagra canada - We need you !!! on te les piquait tout de suite. Je fais site serieux vente viagra - site français vente viagra un bon départ. s’ils veulent comparatif prix cialis viagra - cialis ou viagra prix des bordereaux. emmerdeuse impénitente. je sais viagra 25mg - forum achat viagra net un peu lire et écrire. mercredi 27 viagra prix en pharmacie - prix viagra en pharmacie juin 2012 à 11h15.

teaching

# Modeling Workshop: Week 1 (Fear and Respect The Hestenes)

Nominally, what Modeling Instruction appears to be is an attempt to formalize instructional strategies that actually track how humans learn stuff. Example:

Funny thing happens => Curiosity piqued => Go back to task at hand => Eat sandwich => Funny thing happens again => Look for patterns => Near obsession with characterization to the point of oversimplification => New funny things happen => Revise Model

Is this what Modeling Instruction looks like? No, silly!

I’ve been sitting in a room for 8 hours each day with about 25 other teachers. In that time the phrase:

“Yea, but they [students] don’t know enough yet to do that”

has been uttered more than a handful of times.

This is the fundamental teacher misconception that Modeling, Inquiry, or whatever other hyper-effective method of teaching is trying to address and expunge.

In the world of academia it used to go like this:

Teach the end result through direct instruction => Maybe, if there’s time, we’ll let you sort of do something that verifies how smart the book is => Contemplate changing major

I know I’m preaching to the choir here, but modeling really turns that mentality on its ear while breaking out some teeth just to make itself clear.

# Models From Week 1:

Here are the models we’ve covered in week 1; it’s painful how simple this is, yet almost unreal how powerful going through the curriculum has been:

1. The constant velocity model. Or, let’s pretend everything moves at constant speed and can be described by:

$position = rate*time + initialPosition (y=mx+b)$

2. Accelerated motion model. So, things change speed, do they? Interesting. Parabolas are discussed and linearized by graphing Position vs. t^2 (which is an awesome thing to do)

3. So, it turns out acceleration doesn’t always happen. Why? Invent the concept of Force. (Net force) The fundamentals of Newton’s first and third are discussed, and some pretty killer misconceptions are foiled. Such as the impetus concept, wherein students believe that there’s a magic force pushing all moving objects.

That’s as far as we’ve gotten, and I’ve drunk a metric crap-ton of Modeling flavored Kool-Aid.

Why?

Because they do the experiments first, analyze the data, and cull the concepts out. The experiments are hand-picked for their simplicity and clarity, which I hated at first, but now I totally see the point.

I will absolutely be adopting Modeling’s paradigm labs as my guided investigations from here on out. Open inquiries will then follow, after some killer white boarding.

# A few notes from working with other teachers:

1. Teachers want to be validated as professional educators and content knowledge specialists. This need comes out during discussions and can often be very repetitive.
2. Many teachers view technology as an add-on instead of as an opportunity for totally new things. If the technology doesn’t make something they already do easier, they don’t see the point. Those of us that dig edu-tech need to communicate better how to by creative with it.
3. Almost every teacher claims to value “critical thinking” above all else. I’m not sure what that means, but I’m scared that what is a fantastic sentiment could translate into being snotty in the face of genuine student questions.
4. I’m a huge douche when it comes to thinking I know what someone is about to say. I always think I do because the language of teaching is so plural. I need to work on that, I bet people think I’m mean. Or, stated another way: If you think you’re already “doing” every new idea, pedagogy, and assessment strategy, you’re probably not, and you may be douchey, like me.
5. Just listen for a hot second; we’re all professionals at more than one thing, after all.
6. (Oh, and sitting in one of those plastic chairs sucks for any duration longer than 15 minutes)

19 thoughts on “Modeling Workshop: Week 1 (Fear and Respect The Hestenes)
• Paul Bianchi says:

Modeling rocks. SBG rocks. Together, they make for a classroom that actually looks like it has evolved since 1900.

• Boomber says:

They may call it a modeling agcney but they are not licensed to get you a modeling job. They get you to take pictures for your portfolio, etc and take their classes. It usually a big waste of money. You need to find a REAL talent agcney that can actually call you and send you to auditions etc.

• bizowiso says:

Awesome post

• Jonnie Becker says:

Once you go modeling you will never go back!

• Tracie says:

I took Modeling chemistry last summer and am going through the Physics training in July (can’t wait!). This completely changed my classroom. I was finally teaching how I wanted to. My group had several people with the same attitude as yours, thinking that kids wouldn’t be able to handle it, especially “those” kids. I have taught lower level kids for several years now and incorporated Modeling into those classes. They took off with it. In fact, I had less complaining from and more success with the “dumb” kids than I did from the “smart” kids. Glad you got into Modeling and hope to hear more from you – good luck!

• Jason Buell says:

And yet another year goes by without any modeling PD in California. Totally weak.

• Shawn says:

Man, I’ve missed you. I’m making a movie about grading. Would you like to be in it?

• Jason Buell says:

Sure but I charge extra for nude scenes.

• Shawn-
I too was circumspect about attending my first modeling workshop, and the instruction I received far exceeded my expectations of professional development.
To dispel the myth of “oh this won’t work with my kids”, modeling does work with those kids. I work in high poverty schools and have students of all backgrounds and abilities and… modeling works! It works with my gifted scholars, it works with my reluctant scholars, it works with students who have learning disabilities. One beauty of modeling is that it is inclusive and allows for scaffolding of students no matter the level at which they approach the material. It also allows for multiple representation of content models: words – graphs – math, allowing for multiple access points for students.
My first year teaching modeling method was confusing and frustrating; modeling well requires constant reflection and change in instruction to meet student learning needs. Is the tedium of plastic chairs and simple repetition of models worth it?… for the sweet success of the “oh, I get it” from students – yes.

• [...] Modeling Workshop: Week 1 (Fear and Respect The Hestenes) – Shawn Cornally tells us about his first week at a summer modeling workshop and he seems to be loving it. [...]

• jane jackson says:

Shawn,

To help your readers understand more about Modeling Instruction, below is a short description of it, written by my colleagues David Hestenes and Larry Dukerich. David Hestenes, now Emeritus Professor of Physics at ASU, co-founded Modeling Instruction with local high school physics teacher Malcolm Wells. Larry Dukerich is a recently-retired high school teacher who led development and refinement of Modeling Workshops in physics, chemistry, and physical science.
Cheers,
Jane Jackson, Co-Director, Modeling Instruction Program
Department of Physics, Arizona State University,
http://modeling.asu.edu

*************************************
The Modeling Method corrects many weaknesses of the traditional lecture-demonstration method, including the fragmentation of knowledge, student passivity, and the persistence of naive beliefs about the physical world. It makes the coherence of scientific knowledge more evident to students by making it more explicit.

Instruction is organized into modeling cycles which engage students in all phases of model development, evaluation and application in concrete situations –– thus promoting an integrated understanding of modeling processes and acquisition of coordinated modeling skills.

The teacher sets the stage for student activities, typically with a demonstration and class discussion to establish common understanding of a question to be asked of nature. Then, in small groups, students collaborate in planning and conducting experiments to answer or clarify the question. Students are required to present and justify their conclusions in oral and/or written form, including a formulation of models for the phenomena in question and evaluation of the models by comparison with data.

Technical terms and representational tools are introduced by the teacher as they are needed to sharpen models, facilitate modeling activities and improve the quality of discourse. The teacher is prepared with a definite agenda for student progress and guides student inquiry and discussion in that direction with “Socratic” questioning and remarks. The teacher is equipped with a taxonomy of typical student misconceptions to be addressed as students are induced to articulate, analyze and justify their personal beliefs.

For example, in one experiment students are asked to develop the principles of the motion of a pendulum. With the teacher as recorder, the students brainstorm about properties of the pendulum which might affect its period. After compiling the list, teacher and students decide which of the properties should be investigated. In this example they determine to investigate how changes in the mass of the bob, the length of the string and the amplitude of the motion affect the period. The students then work in teams and determine their own procedure for collecting data. After collecting data, they plot the variables appropriately and then elicit the equations of motion and the relationships among the variables. Then, in a technique called “whiteboarding”, each group presents the results of their experiment to the class. At the end of this process, the class can agree on an appropriate model to describe the behavior of the pendulum. They do this without being given the answer from a text or a teacher.

Students come to see that such everyday phenomena as feeling pinned in their seats while an airplane is taking off, yet being able to move about the cabin easily while the plane is cruising at 600 knots can be readily explained using simple particle models. They come back making remarks like, “Now I know what’s going on during amusement park rides.” Or “It’s scary, I find myself analyzing my motion during amusement park rides. Am I still ok?”

In whiteboarding, the two most frequently asked questions are, “Why do you say that?” and “How do you know that?” Students must account for everything they do in solving a problem, explaining why they had done it that way, and ultimately appealing to theory developed on the basis of experiments that had been done in class. Students must be explicit in their understanding. Instructors trained in the Modeling Method do not take correct statements for granted. They always press for explicit articulation of understanding.

• Joe Morin says:

Picking up on your comment on critical thinking … that is an important thinking skill after memorization. But it is a very immature thinking skill. Almost anyone can take a position and criticize an idea. However sticking your neck out with a creative idea for others to shoot at involves a lot more courage. Creative thinking is what you are presently engaged in to deveop improved teaching pedagogy. The stages of cognitive development occur at different times and overlap differently for different people, but I think we need to teach our students memorization skills, critical thinking skills, problem solving skills, and creative thinking skills.

• Jim Deane says:

Modeling physics changed my classroom instruction and CHANGED MY LIFE. Seriously. I look forward to taking another summer workshop, hopefully a three-week workshop next summer.

For those of you who want more information on modeling physics, the website at modeling.asu.edu provides enormous resources to read through, including the extensive research over the past three decades or so that has established it as a highly effective method of teaching physics.

Shawn, you were one of the teachers who sold me wholeheartedly on SBG, maybe I mentioned something about Modeling along the way that nudged you in this direction…it would be nice to think that I gave you something of value in exchange for your SBG influence!

• jane jackson says:

Modeling Workshops for high school physics, chemistry, and physical science teachers are offered in summer 2011 at 28 sites in 20 states. Modeling Workshops are peer-led. Modeling Instruction is designated by the U.S. Department of Education as an Exemplary K-12 science program.

Some sites offer stipends, usually for in-state teachers. Graduate credit is available at most sites.

For details, visit http://modeling.asu.edu/MW_nation.html or http://www.ptec.org/pd

• Diane says:

I would just give a caution that maybe this method of doing experiments and figuring out things afterwards could work better with some students than others. For myself, I took 8th grade science with a program that sounded like the approach here. But I learned very little. But I am someone who likes/needs to get an idea of the “whole picture” before diving into a project– if I get a new appliance I will actually try to read the instruction manual. My husband is the opposite; he learns better by trying things out. In my 8th grade science, in which students worked independently or in teams, following some printed instructions, I remember tinkering with scientific apparatus and trying to set up and do some experiments– I didn’t understand what or why I was doing, and don’t remember the teacher talking much with us about the outcomes or any science concepts (maybe that was the problem . . .). His emphasis was on putting all the beakers, bunsen burners, etc. away so they would look “better than you found them–” at least that’s what I remember. I got an A in the class (and did a great job on putting things away) but didn’t learn much about science.

• Mark Hammond says:

Diane, what you describe doing in 8th grade sounds like a fairly open inquiry approach. I think I recognize it because I have tried it as a teacher (before I took a Modeling workshop). And you are right: it only seemed to work with about a third of my students. The second third ripped through the experiments to get an answer (often the most straightforward answer) and then insisted on being bored rather than digging deeper. The final third got a lot out of the class (this fraction of the class may have been closer to 20%, actually).

How Modeling Instruction differs is that the lab-first experiences are “guided” (rather than “open”) inquiry. Before we go into the lab, my students already know what relationships they are looking for, what variables they will be measuring, even what graphs they will ultimately draw (at least vaguely). The reason they know this is NOT because of any written instructions (which I’ve always found reduces the lab to a mechanical, do-this-then-do-that exercise of little value), but rather because of the paradigm lab that we all do together before they are turned loose in the lab. The class as a whole watches a physical situation that I have set up, making group observations, turning these observations into things they can measure, then deciding what tools they need to measure them, then deciding what variables they might want to explore relationships between (and, hence, what they are going to graph). This takes about 20 minutes, and at the end I have a class full of kids who know what they are going to do in the lab… and no other method I have ever tried has worked so well. I never get “What’s the point of this again?” kinds of questions, which used to happen at least once every lab. It’s brilliant.

• Ian H. says:

I think my biggest issue with the Inquiry based model (which I love as a concept) is the difficulty in creating authetic student tasks that allow them to discover what it is they don’t know. I think this is relatively easier in maths and sciences, but for languages and humanities, a lot of the time I’ve found that students just don’t know what they don’t know – they can’t see the gaps in their knowledge. So when I set a task, they will come out with a perfectly reasonable solution/explanation that ignores some fundamental concept to be able to work. While this does lead to some “Did you consider..” or “Have you thought of..” moments from me, that seems to cheapen the idea of inquiry, since I end up basically handing them the concepts that the activity is supposed to be making them figure out on their own.

• George Przywolnik says:

The really terrific thing that Modelers do is to encourage (and train) students to start asking each other the “did you consider” kind of questions. It takes a while to set up successfully, but once achieved is a very powerful teaching/learning tool. Modelers also work toward a well-researched set of “big ideas” that students are supposed to learn (but rarely do in regular classrooms, for a variety of reasons).
It’s worth remembering that the authentic tasks in Physics Modeling are based on literally decades of research and shared experience – it’ll take a lot of work to get other disciplines to a similar point.

• Ian H. says:

I’d be interested to know if anyone is working on a series of tasks for the humanities or language arts…

Switch to our mobile site