[IAEP] Comments on David Kokorowski, David Pritchard and "Mastering" Educational SW
alan.nemo at yahoo.com
Wed Jul 1 12:25:49 EDT 2009
That's a pretty funny comment. (I hope you were being humerous ...)
From: David Farning <dfarning at sugarlabs.org>
To: Maria Droujkova <droujkova at gmail.com>
Cc: Alan Kay <alan.nemo at yahoo.com>; K. K. Subramaniam <subbukk at gmail.com>; iaep at lists.sugarlabs.org
Sent: Wednesday, July 1, 2009 9:08:18 AM
Subject: Re: [IAEP] Comments on David Kokorowski, David Pritchard and "Mastering" Educational SW
On Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 10:55 AM, Maria Droujkova<droujkova at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 11:29 AM, Alan Kay <alan.nemo at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> In theory, teachers are supposed to be a critical pool of significant
>> adults, especially for the fields -- such as math and science -- in which
>> most parents are not adept or interested. In the US, this is unfortunately
>> also the case for most elementary school teachers, and (way too) many middle
>> and high school teachers.
>> Serious "juvenile" science fiction stories and novels -- not TV or movies
>> -- in the 40s and 50s were a great alternative. For example, those by
>> Heinlein, Asimov, Clark, etc.
> Juvenile science fiction and fantasy has been increasingly moving from
> technology focus to social and psychological topics. What kids read now is
> much more likely to be about touch moral choices than about fancy future
> technologies. This may be a part of the general lack of math in juvenile
> cultures, including social web sites.
While this is an interesting topic. It is getting pretty far from the
goals of Sugar Labs, to create and promote a learning platform.
There are numerous forums for discussing education theory. This
particular forum, and project, are geared toward turning those
theories into activites and content which can used, tested, and
assessed in classrooms.
>> From: Maria Droujkova <droujkova at gmail.com>
>> To: Alan Kay <alan.nemo at yahoo.com>
>> Cc: K. K. Subramaniam <subbukk at gmail.com>; iaep at lists.sugarlabs.org
>> Sent: Wednesday, July 1, 2009 8:18:34 AM
>> Subject: Re: [IAEP] Comments on David Kokorowski, David Pritchard and
>> "Mastering" Educational SW
>> On Tue, Jun 30, 2009 at 11:33 PM, Alan Kay<alan.nemo at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> > When I get together with other scientists, at some point I ask them how
>> > they
>> > got started. For most, it wasn't because of school, but because of
>> > direct
>> > contact with adults, often a relative who was a scientist, and some of
>> > the
>> > older generation got into it from reading the classic science fiction
>> > stories of the 40s and 50s. (This is not a scientific survey, heh heh,
>> > but
>> > it would be interesting to see the results of one.)
>> I have seen results of more formal studies about the subject in several
>> different areas. One of most notable areas is "survival": success stories of
>> people who grew up with serious adversity, such as parental abuse or extreme
>> poverty. Almost universally, people who were able to make it name
>> "significant adults" as the key difference in their life.
>> I conducted some interviews at two summer camps, one for keeping girls on
>> the fast math track, and another for underrepresented minorities. I asked
>> kids about their decisions for college, future career, and current math and
>> science activities. Personal adult friends or relatives came up as the main
>> factor in these interviews.
>> My daughter is working on a parent-child-professional coop called "My
>> young apprentice" for helping kids meet adults for micro-apprenticeships and
>> possibly longer-term contact. It's crucial for, well, everything pretty
>> > ________________________________
>> > From: K. K. Subramaniam <subbukk at gmail.com>
>> > On Tuesday 30 Jun 2009 11:23:24 pm Alan Kay wrote:
>> >> what is more interesting is how well certain ways of thinking work
>> >> in finding strong models of phenomena compared to others.
>> > This is the part that interests me too ...
>> >> So, if we get
>> >> pneumonia, there are lots of paradigms to choose from, but I'm betting
>> >> that
>> >> most will choose the one that knows how to find out about bacteria and
>> >> how
>> >> to make antibiotics.
>> > ... and this is where I get stuck ;-), particularly in the context of
>> > school
>> > education (first 12 years). Unlike the 3Rs, thinking processes have no
>> > external
>> > manifestation that parents/teachers can monitor, assess or assist. The
>> > economic value of deep thinking is not realized until many years later.
>> > The
>> > latency between 'input' and 'output' can be as large as 12 years and
>> > 'evaluation' of output may stretch into decades!
>> I beg to differ here, Subbu. Any time you do any sort of meaningful
>> project with a person of any age, deep thinking manifests itself most
>> strikingly. Here are some household examples:
>> - Deep idea: random events. A toddler pushes a pet bunny off a high place.
>> The mother says that unlike kittens, rabbits can break their legs this way,
>> but the toddler thinks since it did not happen this once, it won't ever
>> happen. The mother takes a glass outside and rolls it down the stairs,
>> several times. It breaks at fourth roll. Toddler experiments with breakable
>> objects more to explore the idea of "sometimes." They keep discussing this
>> big idea of "sometimes" and experimenting. A few years down the road, the
>> mother relates to the kid how this guy was saying, "I smoked all my life and
>> I am fine" - and they laugh at it, together. Probability and statistics
>> comes in later still. Meanwhile, the bunny's safe, and a whole host of
>> dangers that happens "sometimes" are easy to communicate to the toddler.
>> - Deep tool: graphs. Several kids play with graphs qualitatively (a-la
>> http://thisisindexed.com/). What comes of it? When the 5yo math club members
>> yell too loud, the leader makes a "yelling graph" kids follow up and down in
>> volume, as it's being drawn, thereby obtaining control. When a 10yo
>> experiences a strange math anxiety, she draws a graph of her mood vs.
>> problem solving events, and analyzes it for possible patterns. When a tween
>> and teen group discusses game design, they compare learning curves for apps
>> and games they know and make design decisions correspondingly.
>> - Deep collective reasoning: kites. A 3-5 Reggio Emilia group decides to
>> make kites together. Adults provide books and supplies, kids work on
>> patterns and sketch and photograph their ideas. It takes listening and
>> coordinating; their peacekeepers of the day resolve conflicts. Kites change
>> from day to day, becoming increasingly complex.
>> Maria Droujkova
>> Make math your own, to make your own math.
>> http://www.naturalmath.com social math site
>> http://groups.google.com/group/naturalmath subscribe now to discuss future
>> math culture with parents, researchers and techies
>> http://www.phenixsolutions.com empowering our innovations
> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
> IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org
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