Thursday, February 23, 2012

Module 6 Learning Philosophy Debra Morris

I believe learning should be an active process that allows students the opportunity to explore and be creative in an environment that promotes success.  I believe learning should be presented in a manner in which the learner does not fear exploration and expression of his/her thoughts.  It should be active and allow for collaboration between learners.  I find that constructivism leans toward my thoughts on learning.  Constructivist learning allows for active engagement and uses problem solving strategies (Driscoll, 2005). This theory allows the learner to build upon prior knowledge. My learning experience with Walden University has provided me with this type of learning environment and therefore, I have applied this style to my teaching.
I have found that students are able to digest and apply material when it is presented in a meaningful way.  In addition, engagement is greater when they are active participants in a community of learners.
I believe creating an environment that is engaging and promotes success is non-negotiable.  My purpose for teaching is to engage students in the exploration of new knowledge and build upon prior knowledge.  It is to promote success for all learners.  In addition I feel my purpose is to create life-long learners that leave my classroom with knowledge and skills they can apply and find purpose in.  With these things in mind, it is vital that I promote the use of technology within this type of environment.  Research has shown that collaboration among learners promotes success.  Technology allows for greater collaboration, engagement, differentiated instruction and task, research of knowledge and application.
Driscoll, M. (2005).  Psychology of learning for instruction (3rd ed.). Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.
I have responded to Sandra Dykes and Toni Toney


  1. Hi Alison,
    I too am a constructivist proponent. I agree that learning must be active and that it occurs as a series of experiences--guided or independent--upon which the learner reflects to gain deeper understanding. Technology is just one more tool that learners can employ to enable social, collaborative interaction and reflection. The technology is just that--a tool. It is not the knowledge, as Siemens (2006) argued.

    Siemens, G. (2006). Knowing knowledge. Copyright 2006 by George Siemens.

  2. Hi Debra,

    I agree with you that students should have the opportunity to learn by doing. These concrete learning experiences are meaningful; students are more likely to retain knowledge when they have these experiences. For example, I am teaching my students the standard "Push and Pull" or "Objects in Motion".

    Today, we went outside, and we played a game of kick ball after we did our choral reading on the topic. My students were ask probing questions when they kicked the ball. We were able to put what we had learned into action. Furthermore, students could draw from prior knowledge to make those valuable real life connections to the factual knowledge about push and pull.
    Needless to say, the students had a blast!

    Your post is awesome; I can really relate to your comments about meaningful learning experiences. Engagement in experiments and activities allow students to make the connections to knowledge that will help them to retain knowledge.

    Sandra Dykes

  3. Debbie,

    I am always enamored with fellow scholar-practitioners such as yourself who embrace a constructivist learning philosophy. At times, I feel there is just no other alternative -- though, obviously there is -- to an experiential learning approach in which there is no limit on creativity and ideas of learners. In my view, this is a haven for the Multiple Intelligences approach -- and even more fertile ground for cognitive and developmental behavior.

    Kudos to embracing a malleable learning philosophy -- and extra kudos to the theorists behind a commendable approach.

    All the best,


  4. I agree that student to get more from material when it is presented in a meaningful way. I believe that with the students of today's classroom technology plays a big part in that meaningful way you are talking about. Technology is second nature to them since that have grown up with it. Therefore I think that when technology is used to present material the students gain more from it. BV