Enabling Effective Learning

I really enjoyed increasing my own understanding about the difference between learning and understanding through this week’s reading. When creating my essay, I utilized the concepts discussed by Bransford, Brown and Cocking’s (2000) How People Learn and focused on how teachers can facilitate effective student learning. I tied a few of my own teaching experiences to my writing to put my perspective into context. Feel free to read the full essay Here !


3 thoughts on “Enabling Effective Learning

  1. Amy, I thought you effectively expressed the challenges we educators must address if we are to teach for understanding. In particular, I found you made an important point about not only establishing students’ preconceptions of the content, but also recognizing the students’ preconceptions of themselves as learners. Helping students articulate their mindsets, and then intervening when those mindsets are self-defeating, will encourage the development of strong non-cognitive skills.

    Shifting gears, I’m curious if you use technology to have students reflect on how they solve math problems. I ask because as an English teacher I’m always looking for ways to improve my students’ metacognitive skills. A common refrain I hear from math teachers is for students to show their work, and it seems to me such transparency in their thought process allows for intriguing ways to incorporate opportunities for boosting metacognition.


    1. Thanks for your feedback, Charles! Yes, I used technology every day with my students. I taught math at a blended learning high school so I utilized a plethora of ed tech tools, online adaptive math practice programs/apps. I would have students share their work virtually with each other and with the class and would have them walk through their thinking for each step as they solved through problems.


  2. You are spot on with the belief that students will not learn for themselves if a teacher is constantly by their side or if the work is always the same. I liked the example you used with Denny’s. As a former restaurateur, I know that all menus are different. If you prepare someone using only one menu, it will not prepare them to eat at other restaurants. This is very accurate for teaching. One method will not work for the entire class. Individual students will need varying teaching methods in relation to their cognitive abilities.


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