Critical and Creative Thinking
Critical thinking is the active, persistent, and careful consideration of a belief or form of knowledge, the grounds that support it, and the conclusions that follow. It involves analyzing and evaluating one’s own thinking and that of others. In the context of college teaching and learning, critical thinking deliberately and actively engages students in:
- Raising vital questions and problems and formulating these clearly and precisely;
- Gathering and assessing relevant information, and using abstract ideas to interpret it effectively;
- Reaching well-reasoned conclusions and solutions and testing them against relevant criteria and standards;
- Openly considering alternative systems of thought; and
- Effectively communicating to others the analysis of and proposed solutions to complex challenges.
Creative thinking is the generation of new ideas within or across domains of knowledge, drawing upon or intentionally breaking with established symbolic rules and procedures. It usually involves the behaviors of preparation, incubation, insight, evaluation, elaboration, and communication. In the context of college teaching and learning, creative thinking deliberately and actively engages students in:
- Bringing together existing ideas into new configurations;
- Developing new properties or possibilities for something that already exists; and
- Discovering or imagining something entirely new.
NC State University, (2012).
My understanding of critical thinking is the logical process of thinking; it includes reasoning, evaluating and making a decision based on the information. Creative thinking is thinking outside the box, using your imagination and creating original thoughts and ideas. Reflecting on my skills in these areas of cognitive ability, I believe I have a moderate level of critical thinking skills but as for creative thinking, I am not a blimp on the radar. I believe my biggest hurdle to critical thinking is being impatient. I do not allow people; myself included time to think about the question or problem to come up with ideas and answers. In regards to my creative thinking barriers, I can only offer that it is substantially harder to do, so I stay in the safe critical thinking zone where I know the elements and can defend my position. I find it very difficult to step out of the box, even though I know there are wondrous things that could be waiting for me.
Interpretive:I see lots of examples of critical thinking in our classroom and the development of these thinking skills in students as they move through the course. We use classification and case study strategies quite often which foster high level thinking skills. Student use the data provided to create treatment plans for clients with various skin conditions, and must include procedures or products which are recommended for the treatment of their case. Students must also list contra-indications for their particular case. We have students troubleshoot solutions and reasons for cases with unsatisfactory treatment results. By figuring out why something did not work helps the student to apply their knowledge without harming a client. In addition, students are required to analyze each service they perform in the practice lab and document their results and thoughts. These are discussed with the instructor and feedback is provided.
One article in my research I found very interesting discusses how the brain develops pathways for thinking, making shortcuts and overtime these limit our regard to alternatives. I wonder if this is this a reason I find creative thinking so difficult, because of the way I have trained my brain to think over the years?
"Habits, thinking patterns and routines with which we approach life gradually accumulate until they significantly reduce our awareness of other possibilities." Michalko, M (2015).
I will be conducting further research on thinking patterns before I buy in, but it’s interesting none the less.
I am disappointed to realise we offer very few opportunities for creative learning in our class and the few we may do are surface learning at best. In groups our students create a 3D representation of the cross section of the skin. The students are learning about the 3 dermal layers of the skin, what each layer contains and how the components of each layer work with the others. While they do like the creative aspect of this project, to me this is superficial thinking as the students are essentially creating a 3D model of an existing image, they are not taking this image and creating something new with it. I realize now that it’s probably not even a creative thinking activity at all. Hmm…There is another example of learning the colour wheel and students must create the secondary and tertiary colours themselves. Is this creative thinking? I think it might be.
I will embrace a 3-5 second delay when waiting for an answer or in responding to an answer. The more I develop this skill the more I can help myself and students develop critical and creative thinking skills.
I would like to include an additional project which is open to the student’s imagination and one I believe to be a creative thinking activity. Students must study an era/style and create a modern makeup look that highlights one component of that era/style. Detailed photographs of their original makeup look are to be accompanied by their self assessment mark and rationale outlining their ideas and decisions. Examples could be Victorian, Renaissance, and Elizabethan or Egyptian....They are free to choose and create as they wish. Assessment will be a combination of self and instructor marks.
Ethical dilemmas or Split-Room Debate are two critical thinking SET’s I'd like to try for topics such as tanning or Botox. Having the students develop flow charts and concept maps in class, explaining how the Endocrine system (e.g.) interacts with the skin is an example of a critical thinking activity I will build into my Anatomy and Physiology lessons.
Including short answer questions and a short essay question in exams will further display the student’s critical thinking skills. Students are given a set of symptoms of a skin disorder in a case study scenario. They must determine the disorder and formulate a treatment plan for their client in writing, detailing which disorder it is, how they came to that conclusion and the proposed treatment.
As I progress in my instructing career I am committed to learning many more strategies to foster critical and creative thinking in myself and those students I have the pleasure of assisting.
Michalko, M. (2015). Creative Thinking: Think outside your Caged Imagination, Retrieved From: https://creativethinking.net/articlesandtechniques/
NC State University. (2012). Critical & Creative Thinking Definitions, Retrieved From: http://accreditation.ncsu.edu/critical-creative-thinking-definitions
This journal focuses on my reflections on Susan Cain’s ted talk titled “The Power of Introverts”.
The terms introvert and extrovert relates to how an individual responds to various levels of social stimulation. Extroverts crave and enjoy lots of stimulation; they gain energy from being in social situations with lots of people, they can be very talkative and their mind tends to process information very quickly. Introverts need and seek less stimulation, they gain energy from being alone, prefering quieter and calm environments. These individuals like to take their time processing information which can often lead to deep levels of cognitive thinking. (Cain. 2012)
Introversion is different from shyness. Shyness is a fear of social judgment and often shy people feel anxious or awkward when interacting with others. Introverts do not feel anxiety when interacting with people they just like to spend time alone.
Being unique, all people fall on a different place within the spectrum of introvert and extrovert. Those who land in the middle area of the spectrum are known as Ambivert.
Institutions like our schools and work are currently being designed towards group based working environments which leaves little privacy or space for a person to be alone. This extrovert orientated design approach when creating work/school spaces is not ideal. The constant distraction from other people does not enable a person to engage their mind to a level of focus required for deep and creative thinking. All people whether extrovert or introvert, need some quiet time to enable the mind to navigate and maximize their thought processes.
I definitely have a more extroverted personality and my husband is more introverted. This has and sometimes still does create challenges for us. It has taken me along time to accept and allow him the freedom to be himself without pushing my social behavior biases on him. I often catch myself overpowering a situation with my chatter, and have to remind myself to quiet down, allowing others the opportunity to talk.
When in the grips of learning, I do need time to reflect on the information that I am absorbing and focus on my thinking without distractions or interference.
In today’s society there is a belief that bigger and bolder is better. Being an introvert is commonly viewed as socially unacceptable and this bias in our thinking has resulted in many introverts behaving in more extroverted ways to try and fit the mold that is favored in our societies. This inauthentic behavior and pressure to be what we are not, affects a huge percentage of us. Cain suggests that at least a third to a half of the world population is introverts. These people should not be shunned or shamed but given the freedom to spend the time they need alone to recharge and perform to their highest potential.
I recently attended a parent teacher meeting with my daughter who is in grade 3. Their classroom is designed so the students sit at round tables with 5 or 6 children to a table. She was asked what was most difficult about sitting at these group tables and although my daughter has more of an extrovert persona she said that she gets distracted by the other students, which then leads to problems with her achievement. The solution (for now) when she requires solitude, is for her to ask if she can move to the one single table in the back of the room, or to use a privacy screen at the group table. Even though she is confident enough to ask, I wonder if other students would feel comfortable to ask. I saw firsthand how ingrained group based learning is in our society and the detrimental effects it’s having. It is essential to allow people the space and time they require to work individually without interference from others.
I do expect and foster a mutually respectful climate in the classroom. A class discussion during the first week of the course on introverts/extroverts will provide information and promote understanding on the needs and expectations of people on both ends of the spectrum.
I commit to being mindful of the classroom design with some group settings and individual settings. Where I work, I am fortunate to be blessed with a room big enough to have the space and furniture to achieve this.
I will give breaks often and establish regular quiet time in the classroom which will provide opportunities for all students to focus their mind. During classroom discussion I will allow adequate wait time for those quieter students to think thru their answer and the opening to voice their thoughts. Giving students notice of changes or upcoming events removes the surprise element that most introverts find unnerving. I strive to meet the needs of all people, both introverts and extroverts in my classroom, to help them reach their maximum potential.
Cain, S., The power of introverts. (2012). Retrieved November 7, 2015, from
Psychology Today: Shyness. Retrieved November 7, 2015, from https://www.psychologytoday.com/basics/shyness
“Student engagement is a process and a product that is experienced on a continuum and results from the synergistic interaction between motivation and active learning.” Barkley, E., 2010. p8.
The Merriam Webster dictionary defines motivation as “a force or influence that causes someone to do something.”
Motivation can intrinsic or extrinsic and often is a combination of both. Intrinsic motivation refers to a person’s attitudes, beliefs and values and is personal in nature. Extrinsic motivation refers to factors outside the individual such as grades, professional development and money.
Active learning involves students participating in reading, writing and discussion activities that encourage higher order thinking like analysis, creation, evaluation and problem solving skills. Students are performing tasks and thinking about what they are doing and not just passively listening in the classroom. Bonwell, C. 2009.
Both motivation and active learning are required for student engagement to be a real and empowering process.
When I fully participate in my life activities, I find them more rewarding than if I sit on the sidelines and watch. This positive experience fuels my motivation to experience that feeling of enjoyment again. My attitude to learning is the same, the more I participate the more I learn and the more I want to engage.
My first day in Esthetics College began with a quick lesson of theory and a demonstration. We were then taken through the procedure step by step, and performed an eyelash tinting treatment. The class assessed and compared results and discussed ways in which we could improve. I was hooked! We jumped right in and were actively learning which left us wanting more. I have witnessed the joy of students who are fully engaged in their learning; they participate to a greater extent and are motivated to push themselves deeper and further in their tasks. On the flip side, I have also seen students completely detached from the learning experience, which is disheartening for everyone.
Being interested in the lesson motivates students to participate actively in the lesson. There must be relevance to the lesson that links to the course objectives or outlines and the students must be aware of these connections. Motivation comes from applying the newly acquired knowledge or skills and building it onto our current knowledge bases. However, I do think ultimately the level of a student’s motivation is linked to how the student feels about them self as a learner (self-efficacy), their intrinsic and extrinsic motivating factors and their perceived success or failure in the course.
Active learning can be as simple as turning to your neighbor and discussing a topic in a face to face classroom or posting your thoughts on a discussion forum in an online setting. There are higher levels of active learning such as critical thinking tasks. One such learning task is Classifying, which requires the student to understand the content, and use analysis and evaluation skills to determine the items should be sorted, and finally create a classification system.
The two go hand in hand, when students are actively learning, the motivation to continue and keep making connections is increased leading to further participation in active learning activities.
I believe establishing and maintaining a classroom environment that is positive, respectful and energetic helps fosters individuals who are motivated and enthusiastic learners. Keeping lessons short or incorporating quick breaks into a long session will help the students maintain attention. The content and context of the lesson must be relevant to the students learning goals. I will continually link the activity or lesson to prior learning/knowledge and course/lesson outcomes. These strategies will assist students to keep up their motivation.
I will ensure there are plenty of active learning activities and tasks throughout the lessons. One example of this is to have students develop a blog or digital portfolio at the beginning of the course and document their learning and progress for the duration of the program. They will be required to write journals and visually display their newly acquired knowledge and skill development, via photos, videos or pictures. This will be graded and a portion of their final evaluation. I will regularly check on these portfolios and offer feed forward comments.
It’s my sincere desire to witness students be successful in their education goals but my ultimate goal is to see students take responsibility for their own learning and be motivated to become a lifelong learner.
Barkley, Elizabeth F. 2010. Student Engagement Techniques: A Handbook for College Faculty. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, Print.
Bonwell, C. 2009. Active Learning: Creating Excitement in the Classroom. Retrieved from: http://www.ydae.purdue.edu/lct/hbcu/documents/Active_Learning_Creating_Excitement_in_the_Classroom.pdf
Merriam Webster, Motivation. Retrieved from: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/motivation
“Students learn by doing” (Bowen, J., 2012, p 192).
Students need to actively participate in class lessons and activities in order to gain and retain their newly acquired knowledge. The term Active Learning “indicates that to learn, students must do more than just listen: They must read, write, discuss, or be engaged in solving problems. In particular, students must engage in such higher-order thinking tasks as analysis, synthesis, and evaluation” (Active Learning, Wikipedia).
The pyramid below displays the general abilities of students to perform learning outcomes in relation to particular learning activities (UBC, 2010). It shows that people remember only 10% of what they read and 20 % of what they hear. Alternatively, people retain 70% of what they say and write and 90% of what they do. Doing tasks or writing reports enhances students’ critical thinking skills, as their knowledge is required to analyse, evaluate and create solutions or to successfully achieve a learning outcome. Collaborative learning demands, that students discuss, negotiate, solve problems and make decisions. These abilities enhance a student’s social, communication and higher level thinking skills.
Keeping lessons short or incorporating quick breaks into a longer session will help hold the student’s attention. Being interested in the lesson motivates students to participate in the “active” portion of the lesson. There is “long standing evidence that student attention and retention decreases dramatically after 15 minutes, regardless of the quality of the lecture” (Wankat, 2002; Bowen, 2012 p 193). Active learning is possible in all learning environments, by creating valuable lessons either in the field, in the classroom or online.
This subject reminds me of the Chinese proverb:
When I hear, I forget. When I see, I remember. When I do, I understand.
I am a hands-on learner and I believe that is one reason I chose a career in esthetics. What I am discovering, is that I am also a hands-on instructor. I find the best way to teach and learn a treatment is by the methods of modelling or demonstration and then practise, practise, practise. My very first day in esthetics college, rather than beginning with theory, we were taught and then performed an eyelash tinting treatment, I was hooked! We jumped right in and were doing tasks that were exciting and left us wanting more. I can say that all my fellow class mates felt the same way.
It is my sincere desire to see students be successful in their education but my ultimate wish is for students to take responsibility for their own learning. When I fully participate in my life activities, I find them more rewarding and I learn more than if I sit on the sidelines and watch. I have witnessed the joy of students who are fully engaged in their learning, they participate to a greater extent and are motivated to push themselves. I will strive to create a learning environment that fosters enjoyment with the added bonus of learning as well.
To me, active learning can be as simple as turning to your neighbour and discussing a topic in a face to face environment or posting your thoughts on a thread or forum style discussion, in an online setting. Presenting an assignment also contains higher order thinking skills as information must first be gathered, analysed, evaluated and then used to create the project.
Being mindful of how knowledge is gained, questioning that information and then using it to solve problems and develop ideas is active learning in progress. Techniques like mind mapping, journaling, pair or group tasks and my favorite, case studies are all examples of active learning strategies.
For esthetics students, I believe active learning really comes into focus when students are performing treatments, in the school spa. For example, when performing a facial; first the student must use their knowledge to analyse a client’s skin, create an appropriate treatment plan and then evaluate their treatment results by assessing the changes to the skin and how the client feels.
I believe that a class discussion, in a safe and non-judgemental climate, is one of the best ways in which students learn. It helps them understand and apply what they have learned and can provide insight for the teacher as there may be some areas of a lesson that need reviewing. I like using case studies in my classroom; they are a wonderful opportunity for student to practise their knowledge in a secure environment before experimenting on their clients. I will ask students to pair up and choose and research a topic, then create and perform a presentation on their chosen subject. This exercise contains several active learning components, firstly the collaborative learning benefits, next analysing and evaluating the information that they have gathered and finally preparing and understanding their subject so they are able to teach it. By giving students the choice of how they will learn, empowers and motivates them to succeed.
Another example of active learning for students is to create a course long journaling assignment. They could develop a digital portfolio, blog or even a hand written journal with pictures, videos or photographs of their learning journey. Not only is this a great way for students to solidify their understanding, it provides a valuable future resource.
I commit to incorporating active learning tasks into my lesson plans and having short but regular breaks when I have to speak for longer than 15 minutes. This course has provided me with many resources to use in the class room, for example, a game site that I can customise for my subject and a makeup game that allow students to upload a photo and use make up and application techniques to age the person. As I progress as an instructor I look forward to gathering and updating a portfolio of active learning activities and ideas.
Active learning, (2013). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:51, October 17, 2013, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Active_learning&oldid=577528354
Bowen, J., (2012), Teaching Naked: How moving technology out of your college classroom will improve student learning, Wiley & Sons; San Francisco, p 192
UBC, (2010), Active Learning, http://wiki.ubc.ca/Course:EDCP371_951_2010/Active_learning
“Teaching is all about making connections” (Bowen, J., 2012, p 30).
We are social creatures and most of us desire to have meaningful connections with other people. To be successful in the classroom we must first connect with our students to build teaching and learning relationships. Creating an ideal learning environment and getting to know our students in person are good examples of connecting in the classroom. In addition, by using and encouraging communication through various technological mediums, an effective and efficient means of connecting with students is possible both inside and outside of the classroom. “Communication is highly motivating and has a direct impact on students’ learning” (Bowen, J., 2012, p 108).
Facebook now boasts 1.11 billion people using the site each month (The Associated Press, 2013) and Twitter just released its figures at 218.3 million active user each month (Gibbs,S., 2013). Today most students have a Facebook profile or a Twitter account and there are many on other social networking sites. In our busy lives connecting face to face seems to be increasingly difficult, with some students enrolled in courses whose only option is to connect online. Developing a Facebook page for the classroom allows the instructor to post interesting links and articles or general housekeeping information. Students can join and keep their personal pages private (Bowen, J., 2012, p 35).Reflective:
I feel developing relationships and making connections are at the very core of my learning and also how I teach. I remember being more attentive and wanting to work harder in the classes where I trusted and liked the teacher and behaved quite the opposite for the classes with teachers I had no personal connection. Of course it goes without saying that those classes I actively participated in, I achieved higher grades. I also believe that my connection to what I was learning and how relevant I thought it was to me also helped, but for this journal I will concentrate on social connections.
Getting help outside of school hours was a challenge for students, they would have to find the teacher who may or may not have stayed after school and phoning them for assistance was not an option. Using technology like email or facebook now makes it easier for students to access help from either the instructor or from their peers. People can connect from anywhere at any time with real time conversations, providing they are online.
This summer I participated in a course on delivery of instruction and one of my fellow class members was in Costa Rica and joined us online each day. She was on a large screen and we could all see and hear her, as she could us. While the occasional technical hitch was a little frustrating, it was an interesting experience and connecting with her throughout the course was enjoyable for all of us. I realise now, that part of the foundation of my academic success was and still is my relationships with teachers. While most of my early connections were based solely on face to face interactions, recently I took a course and my only communication with the instructor was online. I was nervous, but five minutes into the first meeting I was comfortable and at ease with the new learning environment because I felt a connection with my instructor.
My thought is that trust is what’s most important in building and maintaining connections with students. It is important for students to trust that I am respectful, available, and fair and that I value their previous experiences and knowledge. I am aware there will be times when all my attempts at connecting with a student may be refused, but I will keep trying as it is my sincere desire for all students to know I care about them and that I want to help them achieve their goals.
This year our college class has a Facebook page and all the students do subscribe. The instructor posts fun pictures or activities the group has participated in and this has proven to be a positive experience for our class. It does need to be managed to ensure appropriate information is published, and that is overseen by the instructor.
I do think it is necessary for the instructor to keep the number of social networks used for class communications low, maybe one or two sites. Keeping track of any more is tedious and time consuming. I think Twitter is a great tool to replace texting for announcements or reminders as it allows contact with all students at once rather than sending multiple texts.
My esthetics class is small, and in order to learn, our environment is one of face to face and hands on learning. Smiling and greeting the students in the morning is one way I connect and let them know I am happy they are present. I will build the trust of my students by being available either in class or online when outside of class hours, and reply within a set time frame. I will also continue to be encouraging with feedback and offer objective suggestions in a timely manner.
To create out of class connections, we will collectively decide which communication tool/s to use, (i.e. email, Facebook or Twitter), for class announcements and be consistent with these. I see the benefits of using these sites and would encourage all class members to join and participate by regularly posting interesting information, videos or new trends in the beauty industry to the class Facebook page. I will now invite students to follow me on Twitter as engaging in these methods of communication with the instructor (e.g. to follow the instructor on Twitter) is useful to deliver information quickly and easily, I may occasionally Tweet helpful study or exam tips to keep interest up. As a result of this exercise I see myself integrating e-communications into my classroom.
References: Bowen, J., (2012), Teaching Naked: How moving technology out of your college classroom will improve student learning, Wiley & Sons; San Francisco, p 30
The Associated Press, (2013), Number of active users at Facebook over the years,
Retrieved from http://news.yahoo.com/number-active-users-facebook-over-230449748.html 06/10/13
Gibbs, S., (2013) The Guardian, Twitter's IPO filing: nine scintillating things we've learned,
Roles of the Educator in a Multiple Intelligence Environment
Multiple Intelligences is a theory developed by Howard Gardner in the early 1980’s. “The theory defines intelligence as the ability to solve problems or create products that are valued in one or more cultures or communities. It counters views that intelligence can be measured solely through IQ tests. It contends that all humans possess at least eight forms of intelligence: linguistic, logical/mathematical, spatial/visual, bodily/kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalist” (Kallenbach, 1999, p.14).
The main role of a teacher in this theory is to be a mentor or guide to students and create a positive learning environment where students feel safe and free to explore their new knowledge. In the late 1990’s multiple intelligences was extensively studied in the area of adult learning, particularly adult literacy. It was found that using multiple intelligence teaching strategies can lead to a more effective learning environment. An important aspect of this theory is assessing a student’s intelligence strengths. Having students discover their unique intelligence composition can be achieved by them participating in a questionnaire at this site. Educators can use the assessment results to connect with and know their students better and ultimately be more effective in teaching.
By broadening the approach to developing lesson plans an instructor offers a more individualised mode of teaching which benefits all students. This customising of instruction can be seen through offering a variety of activities and theme or project based lessons, resulting in an increase in creativity and a more positive learning environment. Allowing the choice of activities in class enables students to use their strongest intelligence and often follows with an increase in student attendance, participation and retention of the lesson material; this is even more evident with students with learning disabilities or focus issues. “As a whole, MI-based approaches can be characterised as constructivist. They invite students to construct their own meaning through problem-solving and the media of their intelligence strengths, building on what they already know and feel competent in.” (Kallenbach, et al., p.15).
An instructor should develop and plan assessments that enable students to demonstrate their knowledge of the course material through the use of their preferred intelligence style. This builds on the teaching approach of validating the strengths of the learner. While this does require much thought and initially extra work for the instructor, once the lesson activities and assessments are built the learning benefits for the student are invaluable. I will strive to become more creative in my own thinking to involve the intelligences when developing lesson plans and assessments, and insure a wide variety of resources are readily available for all students to use. As Gardner (1999a) states, “the multiple intelligence theory is best thought of as a tool rather than an educational goal” (Gardner, 1999a; Merriam, S., Caffarella, R., Baumgartner, L., 2007, p 376).
Gardner, H, (1999a), A Multiplicity of Intelligences. Intelligence, 9(4), p 21. In Merriam, S., Caffarella, R., Baumgartner, L., (2007), Learning in Adulthood, Wiley & Sons; San Francisco
Kallenbach, S, (1999) Emerging Themes in Adult Multiple Intelligences, Focus on Basics, Volume 3, Issue A, pp. 16–20 taken from http://www.ncsall.net/fileadmin/resources/teach/ami_pract.pdf
Trends in Multiple Intelligences
Flipped classroom is a recently revived trend in adult education in which the typical lecture and homework elements of a course are reversed. “The term is widely used to describe almost any class structure that provides pre-recorded lectures followed by in class exercises, projects or discussions. The value of a flipped class is in the re purposing of class time into a workshop where students can enquire about lecture content, test their skills in applying knowledge, and interact with one another in hands-on activities”(Eli, 2012). The fundamental element in this approach is the video lecture although the lecture content can certainly be made available through text format.
Multiple intelligence theory can be engaged when using a flipped classroom format as students are able view a podcast, learning the content by utilising a method best suited to their intelligence strengths and at their own pace. For example, a spatial student may be able to retain the infomation by just looking at the video, a linguistic students may want to take notes, a kinesthetic learner has the opportunity to move around and a musical student may have music playing in the background. These habitual activities performed while viewing the video help a learner to remember the content and are usually automatic in nature. Concepts of active learning and student engagement are enhanced by using the flipped format, students can decide if they need to review the material, pause or skip forward the lecture being presented, thus putting the learner in the control of the lesson. The accountability that develops by taking an active role in their own learning process builds students self confidence and has empowering results. This video of Aaron Sams demonstrates how effective combining these two modes of teaching can be. By using the time in class and having a choice of activities or projects, students are able to use their intelligence strengths to reiterate knowledge learned in the podcast. Additionally the instructor can catch misinterpreted information encouraging the student to master one concept before continuing on. Careful preparation by the instructor is essential to be sure all the elements of a flipped class are right. The fluid integration of 'in' and 'out' of class aspects helps motivate students to be prepared for class. When the flipped model is adopted, the time in class also allows for students to engage with each other and help their fellow student with challenges.
An example of combining the multiple intelligence theory and flipping my classroom would be to provide students with a video of a facial massage lecture to be viewed prior to class, with various activities to be completed in class. The video lecture contains information on the contraindications and benefits both physically and psychologically of massage, definitions of various techniques and movements and an actual example of a facial massage. Time in class is spent reviewing the content of the lecture and performing hands on training of the treatment. The classroom would be set up with centres, each with a different project but focused on the subject matter. Individuals are free to choose which centre they will work on. Finally, students would be required to produce the sequence of movements and massage techniques on a fellow student for constructive feedback.
Specific examples of facial massage activities at each centre are as follows:
Centre Activity for Lesson
Describe in writing the massage movements and correct sequence on cue cards
Develop a pattern of movements on cue cards and organise in sequence
Design a map of the massage by drawing pictures or using photos of the movements and place in sequence
In a group (2 or more) discuss the massage and create a plan/chart of the movements and their sequence
Reflect and journal your thoughts about massage and how you interpret the movements and sequencing
Compose a rhythm or song and perform the massage to your composition
Perform massage on a partner and provide feedback for each other
Eli, (2012). 7 Things You Should Know about Flipped Classroom
Web Conference on Multiple Intelligences
Participating in this learning opportunity with my fellow classmate has been a fun and enlightening experience. We discovered and shared many sites and articles relating to multiple intelligence (MI), flipped classrooms and e-learning. We spoke of our thoughts regarding these teaching methods and tools and how we could integrate our new knowledge into the classroom, enabling students to utilise their learning strengths.
Ronna introduced the term "e-learning" to me. It is the use of electronic media (television, video, audio, computers and smart phones) to enhance and deliver instruction to students. Web based learning, virtual classrooms, moodle, mobile learning, skype, social networks, blogs and you tube are just a few vessels in which education today is presented.
Electronic learning can be diversely interactive; this teaching mode is well suited to developing lessons and activities which engage the MI theory. Students can control the pace as they travel through the lessons and activities can be formed with consideration to intelligence styles. Establishing live chat rooms or discussion forums within a course community creates shared experiences and student to student learning opportunities. Flipped classrooms most commonly use videos to prepare students before a class; it is an effective e-learning platform and is essential to implement the concept of flipping. E-learning instruction is generally a step by step format and learning is able to occur in and out of the classroom.
A few examples of e-learning in action are Harvard and Yale Universities who have produced entire free online courses, also Khan Academy which is home to one the largest collections of educational videos on the web today. Today, more instructors are embracing the multiple intelligence theory and utilising the teaching concepts of flipped classrooms and e-learning platforms. These are tools that enhance learning and ultimately the advancement of individuals.