“to exist humanly is to name the world, to change the world”

In reaction to our discussion about racism and the racial microaggressions we are all capable of this quote could not mean more.  From what I gathered in class, we all know that these exist and we all know that we probably are guilty of such microaggressions but do we ever really sit back and think about them or take the time to know what they really mean?  We also know that racism is not a good thing and we know a change should be made but with out really knowing all of the forms, that change can not take place.  This statement makes so much sense when you think of it that way…how can we teach others about racism and the potentially harms if we can not name exactly what it is.  As it turns out, racism is something different to each person, knowing those differences will help us teach others and to make that change. 

Reflection

We talked in class how reflecting comes easy for some but very difficult for others.  I find for me reflecting comes very easy if it is through verbal conversations.  I tend to panic when I am asked to put those thoughts down on paper, especially for others to read!  There is something about having to commit to a thought or idea.  When I talk something through with someone I am more willing to let my thoughts flow in free form.  When asked to write I find myself too concerned with what I am saying, will it sound right, does it make sense, am I writing the right thing, etc.  We also discussed whether or not we should read each others blogs and make comments or just read them and reflect.  I personally do not look at any one else’sblog until I finish my own.  That is the only way I know my thoughts will be original.  Of course raeding others help me in my own learning, just as discussed in class, sometimes someone else seems like they are on the same wave length you are and can break something down in just the right way so that you can understand the problem, or situation better.

Brookfield was concerned with how we use reflection to see how we work and learn from different lenses.  I have seen that idea come through.  Often as we are discussing these different lenses I see myself reverting back to my educational biography and some of the ways I described situations that affected my learning and can see the different theories into play.  I also enjoy watching that ah ha moments of others when they see the same thing.  Learning is so dynamic and constantly changing so it makes sense that there so many different ways to explain the process of learning.  I, in the meantime, am going to continue to try to let go of the fear of writing the wrong thing and  practice free form reflection in my writing as I do in my speaking.     

First Reflection

Well now that I am in, my password reset (again), and my design picked (even though I will most likely change it because I am indecisive like that) I can reflect.  Well, before I reflect I must say that I am not as good at this blogging thing as I thought I would be because I just noticed I gave it the wrong name.  I will work on fixing that.  Back to the topic at hand, it is not very often that I allow myself time for reflection so this should be fun…In class we began to discuss some of the various theories of adult learning and I must say, I think I am liking the cognitive learning theory but I have lots of questions.  I love the idea that your mind is active, not passive in learning (or it should be anyway).  Love schema theory, the idea that we create scripts or schemas for ourselves that help us make sense of things.  I understand how someone that is an “expert” has developed the ability to organize their knowledge in a way that is easy to retrieve based on the patterns or schema they have created in their mind and the way they can retrieve that information in a way that uses as little effort as possible.  My big question is can anyone become an expert at something or do some posses some sort of predilection based on their IQ or genetics or something else?  I am trying to think of something I am expert at and I just can’t…does this mean that I do not have the ability to become expert or have I just not worked hard enough at something?  I will keep working on that I guess.  Having a broad set of schemas and having them organized a certain way makes an “expert” but is this always such a good thing?  Does it close ourselves off from coming up with new solutions or thinking of new ideas, or a better way to organize our knowledge?  I am reading a book right now, How Doctor’s think” by Dr. Jerome Groopman.  The book discusses some of the cognitive errors Doctors make in treating and diagnosing their patients.  One of the common cognitive errors that can occur come from the schemas doctors create.  They have seen this or that before so they sometime are quick to make the diagnosis and move on.  The good doctors, Dr. Goopman says, are aware of these types of cognitive errors and work to avoid them.  But have they just made a new schema for that thus becoming even more expert?  I don’t know??  Anyway, I think the book is a great read and fits in quite naturally.  Looks at learning in a very specific field but a lot of the same themes seem to be there!   

A must read: