EDU629: Module 6 Discussion Post

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EDU629: Module 6 Discussion Post

Within my own learning experiences I believe that the only classes where I can pinpoint the usage of Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development is within elective courses. I believe this is primarily due to their project based or the linear progression of acquiring skills and applying them to various tasks in a sequence. I believe that in many courses throughout my elementary and junior high school experience strived to acknowledge my level and ability, but reflecting on my experiences there was limited two way dialog between myself and my educators until high school.

Reflecting on my high school experience I had a variety of teachers for different content areas rather than a few for multiple courses. I believe this and the ability for flex time where I could work on coursework or reflect on my classes with my teachers allowed for me to be better instructed at my level. While my classrooms never seemed to have specific learning centers I did feel that the openness of my teachers either during free periods or after school was useful to my growth and readiness for content learning in secondary education.

With regards to brain science in the classroom, I believe that most educators used experiential learning(Hansen, 61) as a keystone to what we did in their classrooms. Throughout my elementary school experiences teachers always aligned content with trips, skits we would create, or themed days where a grade would come together to create a learning experience around a unit. I can distinctly remember learning about agriculture, geology, and American expansion into the west and having that learning culminate in some sort of “pioneer day” class fair. I can also remember learning about various court cases in the 60’s and 70’s and having to do mock trials after various activities. This definitely kept me engaged in the content and had me contextualize and apply my own interpretations to the topics at hand.

While visual learning (Hansen, 62) may have been at the forefront of many of my teachers, I believe that I didn’t fully grasp it or it wasn’t properly implemented until I reacher high school. In high school I believe teachers did a better job explaining content and helping us engage in it by creating our own diagrams, ways of remembering things, etc. Specifically I remember my teachers using a variety of imagery to help make concepts more concrete or to reference back to when needed. My science courses were especially good at providing imagery for recalling content, while my language arts and Latin courses helped us create our own imagery while we read or interpreted various texts.

Finally looking at readiness vs. ability I believe that my high school teachers better ability to connect my interests to their content allowed me to think deeper about my ability and better engage in various tasks. As a student I felt very intimidated by tasks and felt unsure of my own ability, rarely feeling ready for future tasks. Throughout my freshman year in high school a few teachers through open communication and reflection on my work helped me overcome this and better understand how I personally could operate as a student.

As of now and moving forward I want to figure out how to make more time for my students to be able to get more independent time with me. How I do so within or outside the class must be explicit, but not mandatory. Realistically what I need to do is better loop back on how my students are faring as we move through larger projects, and better converse with them on how they should approach future projects. Currently I do this to an extent, but am mostly working with small groups, my next step is to work towards better direct communication with all my students individually.

Hansen, C. B. (2019). The Heart and Science of Teaching: Transformative Applications That Integrate Academic and Social–Emotional Learning. [VitalSource Bookshelf]. Retrieved from Tomlinson, D.A.S.C. A. (2018). Differentiation and the Brain. [VitalSource Bookshelf]. Retrieved from