An Exploration of Learning Style Interests

Posted on October 3, 2012 by

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Taking a class like USHRS (United States History Research Seminar) has been a completely new experience for me.  So far at my school I have gotten used to and in the rhythm of taking classes that assign nightly work that is due the next day, with the occasional essay or longer-term project.  These types of monotonous classes have not allowed me to explore my strengths and skills in learning very much, which is why am I very excited to continue my work that I have just begun in USHRS.

The due dates or size of the assignments are not the only aspects of this class that make it unique and intriguing though, for the style that we learn the material and are able to present it to the class is completely new.  Our teacher, Mike, is formatting the class so that instead of the teacher-gives-lecture-to-student-while-student-takes-notes type of learning, we are doing something called Partnering.

Partnering is basically a style of learning created in order to make the students more enthusiastic about their work, and therefore more efficient and self-motivated.  This happens by the teacher initially asking the students prompt questions, such as “What does it mean to be an American?” which is actually the main topic of our learning for this first project.  Once the teacher asks the question though, the student may use any resources possible to find out information on the topic, and use the teacher as a guiding tool, and assistant at trouble-shooting.

students as rockets, needing to be properly fueled by teachers, programmed with self-directing capabilities, and sent to new distant places is far more respectful of students than the old pedagogy’s view of students as empty vessels to be filled with knowledge” (Prensky 18)

This type of learning appeals to me personally much more those of my other classes, because it gives room for creativeness, so the student does not feel so contained and controlled.

So far in the year, I have been able to explore my learning interests greatly, as I have already discovered that I tend to procrastinate on larger projects.  I always end up finishing them completely and not doing a bad job, but the procrastination adds a certain unnecessary amount stress that is not fun.  I do enjoy the process of research though in the classroom (technology is greatly encouraged to use as a research tool), and the freedom of my presentation method choices.

Although bigger projects are more a challenge to me because of my procrastination habits, challenges can always be overcome and I enthusiastically see this as an additional subject to learn in this class that will help me later in life.  I very much look forward to Partnering with Mike and my fellow classmates throughout the coming year in USHRS!!!!

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Block quote from: Marc Prensky’s Book on Partnering

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Posted in: Learning, Research