These days I don’t really get to teach as much as I facilitate learning with adult learners. Providing professional development learning opportunities for practicing educators is actually one of the many reasons why I love my job as an Instructional Technology Specialist. When considering the theories of learning, I would have to say that I use a mix of behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism when I provide any training for adult learners.
This week, February 5-9, you will find me at the Texas Computer Education Association annual conference in Austin, Texas. I have six sessions ranging in topics from Elementary Robotics to Technology Integration in English Language Arts and Social Studies settings. In this case, I won’t be able to formally assess what my adult learners know before I begin, but I can gain a general idea of my audience needs by using an introduction survey.
I have a range of instructional models planned. For example, Social Studies and ELA Technology Applications will be an informative session. I’ll provide my attendees with an overview of practiced strategies and encourage open dialogue and the sharing of ideas and idea extensions. This reliance on learning through communication is a cognitive approach. I will be reinforcing a behaviorist approach to teaching and learning during my Cross Curricular Connections with Dot and Dash. A slideshow with ideas of cross curricular connections will run on a loop while my co-presenters and I wonder the open space helping attendees reach a comfort level with the perfect for early childhood education and introduction to Blockly programming robots. Finally my Blended IS Elementary session will take a constructivist approach by encouraging learners to build on what they know about teaching and their current instructional practices. We’ll discuss common teaching strategies and provided ideas of how the same concept can be taught in a blended instructional model.