My Journey in EDS 103 Theories of Learning


Screenshot_2014-03-20-06-23-48I started my journey to become an educator with no ideas what will I suppose to learn. It seemed black and white for me. I felt that I am starting my journey with no sense at all. Sometimes, I asked myself is my goal just for the sake of grabbing the licence as teacher or is it for self fulfillment? I know that in mind and heart that my ultimate goal is to inspire and motivate students in achieving their dreams in life.

I enrolled in Professional Teaching Certification (PTC) in University of the Philippines Open University (UPOU) last term. I was blindfolded before but when I enrolled that was the start of an expedition in realizing my dreams as an educator. My first term in UPOU was an eye opener with lots of ideas in teaching profession; it was challenging but made me more aware with my journey towards achieving my dreams. Here we go again; I need to enrol for the third term but I don’t know what course to choose, uhmm suddenly there was a light bulb came in my mind and one course I chose was EDS 103 Theories of Learning. Why theories of learning?  I know that this course will help me be knowledgeable on what constitutes the learning behavior of students.

January 4, 2014 was the start of the class; I was challenged with bulk of requirements and tasks to be accomplished. Is it the time to give up early? I said “NO”, I knew in my heart that I can do it. It was just a challenge, and I am ready to cross the rough roads or even to be in the great ravine to accomplish the tasks. Nonetheless, I already started my expedition and I am here not to give up but to learn on how to be an effective and efficient educator in the future. As the expedition went by, a lot of challenges came in. Being a full time worker and a distance education learner, it was not easy. There were times I am in state of “I don’t know what to do and don’t know what to say” (I am not a psychiatric patient, it was just simple anxiety that I was able to manage. haha) because of stressful work environment and a lot of lessons to read. One of my officemates asked me, “Hindi ka ba napapagod sa ginagawa mo, walang social life puro work and school?”  I said to her “haha, ginusto ko to eh at kakayanin ko para sa inaasam kong pangarap”. I am guilty that I sacrificed my social life, but at times when I am done with my requirements I need to hang out with my friends to watch movies just to relax. But one thing I never sacrificed and that was going to church, it is where I seek divine intervention when I feel down and if everything is not on the proper place I just kneel down and pray.

Screenshot_2014-03-20-06-20-58Now the time has come and it was the culmination of taking the road with the course EDS 103 Theories of Learning.  I want to share with you what new perspectives in learning and teaching I learned during my journey. First, learning theories are important in the field of education because these are essential tools by educators and students to achieve succesful learning experience. These theories are evidence based and will give us incites on the background on how people learn effectively. Theories arm teachers with effective strategies to meet the learning needs of learners. Furthermore, in order for one to be successful in learning, metacognition and self regulation are important because in the end our willingness to learn should start within us.  Motivation to learn starts with the mind and continues within the heart. Our goals, self-determination, self-efficacy, and expectations are important components of motivation.

As educators, awareness of the intelligences of every student is important in order to give opportunites for developing their strengths and achieving mastery, more time for connecting content area and provision for improving assessment.Added to that, all of us have innate intelligences and we sometimes fail to discover it but we must always keep on our mind that the best way to know it is nurturing on what existing knowledge that we have.  I also learned that become an expert it takes a lot focus, dedication and hard work.

Behavioral theories are essential in any settings whether it be in home, school or in work. In school, an educator must be aware on how to regulate behaviors of students in order for successful learning to occur. Using of punishment and rewards should be regarded us a way of modifying students attitudes. At times, students are motivated extrinsically and not intrinsically because of these reinforcements. Therefore, reinforcements should not be solely the basis in determining on how students get motivated to learn.

In the field of education, social learning theories have essential role in developing and modifying students’ behavior towards learning.  Students’ ways of responding in situation will depend on how the environment affects her or his way of thinking. They tend to be goal oriented if they see someone succeed and at times they maybe demotivated because of others failure.  As educators, we must aim for students to have a successful learning experience and for it to realize we should model good behavior. Being good role models to our students will greatly impact on how they see learning in good ways. Furthermore, observational learning has vital role in the learning process because this can create a positive and negative outcomes on students’ learning depending on what they observed from other people. We must create learning materials and strategies where students can enjoy and better understand the lessons through observation.

The methods we process information affects our capacity to learn and to retrieve information. In education, cognitive theories have vital roles in harnessing students’methods of learning. The way we act is the result of the way we think. Realizing the essence of cognitive theories will facilitate effective learning and teaching. Therefore, as educators we must incorporate different strategies using the concepts and ideas of cognitive theories so that we can instill into students minds on how they can successfully process information which includes primacy recency effect, thus effective learning can be achieved.

Constructivist perspectives deal on how students learn on their own and how collaboration with other people affects their existing knowledge or information. It means that learning is learner centered and it should be active not a passive process. To promote a learner centered environment in the classroom setting, teachers must consider the use of constructivism in learning. Lastly, our complex thinking process can be developed as long as we are self directed, self regulated and we practice metacognition. Our creativity, originality and creative thinking are innate but we must always inculcate in our mind that we have the capacity to strengthen these skills with the help of other people and of course “YOU” as the person.

Learning is enhanced in an atmosphere of collaboration and cooperation and participating in forum discussions, e journal and activities facilitate the transfer of learning. Joining these activities provided me a chance to share ideas and insights to fellow virtual learners which increases my complexity of judgment and deepens my understanding.

To sum it all, I learned that effective teaching and learning can be achieved by looking at a person holistically which includes social, cognitive, developmental, personality, behavioral and humanistic views. Thus, our aim as educators is to mold a holistic individual that will build a great society in the future.

The road to success is not easy there are obtacles that you need to take and challenges that you need to surpass but if you have the will and power surely you can make it and you will cross the road smoothly.  As the course comes to an end, my expedition to be an educator is not anymore black and white but it is now colorfol as the rainbow. I must say that this was a wonderful learning experience, an experience that I will never forget as my journey as teacher goes on.

P. S.

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This journey will not be colorful and successful without the people who joined me during the expedition. Thank you Teacher Malou for the wisdom you have shared. Your strategies in teaching are incomparable and I salute you with that. You served as a great motivator and inspiration to me. You certainly did a great job.

To my fellow virtual learners who also served as my More Knowledgeable Others (MKO), all of you never fail to amaze me with your posts, insights and comments which made me achieve more as a learner. It was a great journey taking the road with you guys.

My expedition does not stop here. I will continue to take my journey with a great engine because of the wisdom I acquired from this experience.

God bless.

Complex Thinking Process: The Way We Think


Humans are created with brains to think. Brains will develop as well as the way we think. It is just a matter of honing our capacity to think in order to achieve higher level of thinking .But I have questions on my mind; have you ever felt that your way of thinking is stagnant? Or have you ever been in a situation that you need to think critically?

 

I know that some of you will say that you were once or even many times felt stagnant on the way you think.  As a learner, I tend to memorize facts and just doing rote repetition which is a lower level of thinking. I do it for recalling information when the examination comes and for grades sake. I even asked myself if the way of my thinking is the result of my teachers’ way of planning the lessons and their teaching strategies. Are they doing it right? In classroom setting, most activities take place in the knowledge acquisition with little opportunities for advanced thinking. Based on my experience, some of my teachers’ strategies in teaching make us students as passive learners. Active participation is not being promoted, we are not asked what will be our stand in the lessons but they are more of lecturing. In terms of examination, their types of questions are merely of recalling the information which makes the evaluation process as superficial. I am not blaming my teachers because I know that I have the capacity to become self directed but then again I am just providing realities in the classroom setting. In addition, I handle situations so easy without thinking critically if what will be the consequences of my actions. Sometimes, I feel that I am just a robot trying to follow the commands by other people. I feel so stagnant; my brains are not working so well. I need strategies to enhance my thinking skills and to achieve it I should be metacognitive and self regulated learner. Furthermore, I need to understand, analyze, synthesize and evaluate situations or lessons and not just merely remember the information.

In my undergraduate studies, I have always been in a situation that I need to critically think not because I have to but it is for the people who will be affected and that will be our “PATIENTS”.  As a nurse by profession, it is imperative to have a higher level of thinking because you are dealing with lives. Our complex thinking is related to our nursing process ADPIE (Assessment, Diagnosis, Plan, Intervention and Evaluation). Careful assessment is essential to create a diagnosis that will serve as key in creating the right plan and prompts a great intervention and therefore good outcome will occur. In education, we must not only rely on knowledge formation, comprehension and application but of course we must go beyond that which includes analysis, synthesis and evaluation which are part of the Bloom’s Taxonomy. In order to achieve it, teachers have vital roles in creating teaching strategies that will make students think critically and creatively.

Our complex thinking process can be developed as long as we are self directed, self regulated and we practice metacognition. Our creativity, originality and creative thinking are innate but we must always inculcate in our mind that we have the capacity to strengthen these skills with the help of other people and of course “YOU” as the person.

Constructivist Perspectives: Explore, Expose and Experience


Learning is a continuous process of exploring, experiencing and exposing ourselves in the realities of life that will have a great impact or change on our attitude, knowledge, skills and beliefs.  When you start to explore you learn new ideas, when you experience something whether it be bad or good one you learn from it, when you expose yourself to other people there might be change or modify on your behavior. Just like this TV commercial of NIDO when you let your kids or students explore, experience something and expose them with other people surely they will learn.

Providing knowledge and skills is essential in teaching profession but as educator we must also be aware that students can also construct their own learning. Provision of knowledge and skills means teaching the 3R’s (Reading, Writing, Arithmetic) and any related information about subjects (Science, English, Math, Sports,etc) while providing experience includes life lessons (failures, triumphs, challenges, etc.) and that is part of learning process. In addition, teaching encompasses letting your students to explore something and exposing them to people and environment so that they can learn on their own.

Constructivist perspectives deal on how students learn on their own and how collaboration with other people affects their existing knowledge or information. Existing knowledge of students might change, modify or add wherein if there is discrepancy they can accommodate it and in case there is similarity they can assimilate it.  To promote a learner centered environment in the classroom setting, teachers must consider the use of constructivism in learning. First, students do not come to school with an empty vessels instead they already have existing ideas and conceptions about the lessons. Therefore, awareness of learners’ pre-existing knowledge is necessary for educators to successfully plan teaching activities and help students relate the new material to what they already know. Second, learning is enhanced in an atmosphere of collaboration and   cooperation. Therefore, encouraging participation among students facilitates the transfer of learning wherein we can create activities like role play, experimentation, writing activities and group discussions. The opportunity for them to share ideas and insights and having the freedom to respond to the ideas increases complexity of judgment and deepens understanding. Third, importance of continuous assessment of students’ understanding and providing performance feedback is necessary for effective teaching to occur. Assessment and feedback should be fair and objective in order for students to realize what they need to modify or change about learning the lesson. Fourth, inquiry based teaching is also vital in constructivism. Therefore as educator, you should know how to prepare questioning strategies, instructional materials, and lesson plans that stimulate students understanding which promotes scientific inquiry. Lastly, application of students newly acquired knowledge is necessary and it should have a spotlight in school. It is like a candle if you don’t have a match to light it then that candle is not worthy. In learning, if the lessons will not be put into practice surely you will not realize the essence of it.

Constructivist perspectives is not the sole determinant in effective learning but as educators we must look at a person holistically which includes social, cognitive, developmental, personality, behavioral and humanistic views.

Cognitive Theories: The Way We Process Information


I admit that I am guilty of just memorizing facts that is why sometimes I tend to forget the essence of the lessons. I just memorized pertinent concepts that can be possible questions during examinations just for the sake of having good grades and that was just stored on my short term memory. I am fan of reading the lessons a lot of times just to grasp the information but the truth is I don’t totally understand the reason behind those concepts. I still remember when I was in high school and our subject was Asian History wherein I will create notes with the dates and what happened on those dates and memorize it all over. There are funny moments wherein to test that I already memorized the information, I will just close my eyes and verbally dictate the dates and also what happened on those dates. And if examination comes, I and my classmates will do brainstorming by asking questions with each other just to remember what we have memorized.  This is just a throwback during the days that I am fan of memorizing information.

As a nursing student it is vital that you know the basic concepts or even memorize it. But, when I was a student nurse back when I was in college, I realized that I don’t just need to memorize all the concepts but I need to have deeper understanding on the lessons in order to provide the best nursing care to our patients. Otherwise, if you will just memorize the facts without application you will just fail to provide the right interventions to your patienst. At that time, I learned that to be successful as a student, I must have the capacity to assimilate, organize, comprehend, analyze, synthesize and not just merely memorizing the facts.

The methods we process information affects our capacity to learn and to retrieve information. In education, cognitive theories have vital roles in harnessing students’methods of learning. The way we act and respond is the result of the way we think. Realizing the essence of cognitive theories will facilitate effective learning and teaching. Therefore, as educators we must be aware on different strategies by incorporating cognitive theories so that we can instill into our students minds on how they can successfully process information, thus effective learning can be achieved.

Distance Education: Is it less Social? Forum question by Salvador Jr. Fresado


Distance Education: Is it less Social?

by Salvador Jr. Fresado – Monday, 3 March 2014, 10:13 AM

I am watching the news regarding the construction of the skyway and it’s heavy traffic effect in Makati and Manila and other surrounding areas.  In addition to shortened school days, some suggested Open University as an alternative option.

I spoke with some of my friends who are still in college and they said open university is less social as it lacks classroom interactions.  What can you say about this perception about DE?

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According to Webster dictionary social means “relating to or involving activities in which people spend time talking to each other or doing enjoyable things with each other.”  With this definition of social, I don’t think that distance education is less social in such a way that DE involves virtual interactions among learners and educators. With the emergence of social media, blogging sites, virtual classroom websites, and forum discussion sites this makes DE as an alternative way of developing social interactions in the academe. Furthermore, being a UPOU student it is of high importance to interact with your classmates in the online forum discussion in order to share insights and knowledge. Joining forums and giving comments facilitate transfer of learning. For example, the e journal activity provided by Professor Malou serves as a way of developing interactions among learners by sharing insights and reflections. The constant guidance of our FICs makes DE as supportive learning environment. I also want to share my experience about the virtual classroom which is WIZIQ with Professor Villanueva in EDS 111 wherein it is live video class discussion wherein students and the professor can interact with each other by sharing ideas, insights and comments about the topic real time. In addition, WIZIQ is comparable to traditonal classroom setting wherein there is whiteboard and the teacher can present her power point discussion. Lastly, DE in my own opinion can be successful if learners are in constant communication and participation with their virtual classmates and professors.

Intelligence pl…


That is really true, we always hear this ” Matalino nga pangit naman ang ugali”. Therefore, aside from the knowledge that a person has, he or she must also reflect good attitude towards people in order to realize true success.

EDS 103 : Theories of Learning

“Intelligence plus Character – that is the goal of true education” – Martin Luther King, JR

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Models and Mentors in My Life


Role Models and Mentors

Their Contributions

My Parents

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I will not be a great person without them because they inculcated to us, their children how to be great individuals and that is to have the good attitude towards people. My parents are not college graduates but I am proud of them because they were able to send their children in college. They always believe in my abilities and in every endeavor that I will take they are there to support me. There are times when I feel down, they are always there to lift me up.

Jesus Gonzales ( My Clinical Instructor)

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My nursing profession will not be possible without his guidance. He was my mentor in my endeavor as a nurse. He was my counselor whenever I feel giving up with my nursing career but he always made me feel that I can do it. When I was reviewing for my board exam, he even shared his reviewers. Gladly with his guidance I was able to pass the Nurse Licensure Exam with flying colors. With my new endeavor of becoming an educator, he is very supportive.

Angelica Fernandez (My Classmate and My very good Friend)

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She may not be in a well off family but her passion and perseverance for learning is incomparable that is why I am one of her fan. She introduced me on how to be more faithful as a catholic. Her advice whenever I have problems never fails to cheer me up. She motivated me to aim higher and dream bigger.

Daniel Joseph Berdida ( National Reviewer for NLE, Board topnotcher)

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My idol when I was in review. His enthusiasm in teaching was incomparable. He amazed me with his knowledge in nursing especially in Obstetrics, Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases. He maybe on his highest peak of career but he still down to earth and ready to mingle with students.  He is the “Memory Master” for me and I want to be like him.

Filomena O. Seledio ( My teacher when Iwas In Grade 5)

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“The greatest reward of being a teacher is when you see your students became successful in their lives”, this were the words imparted by Teacher Seledio to me. She was a great motivator, wherein she always made sure that our goals will be achieve. She might be strict in class but one thing I adored her is the passion for teaching.  She was a great role model for the students wherein she showed genuine respect and kindness to people.She was an outstanding teacher for me.

The Type of Role Model I Want to Be for My Students

Inspiration- The reason why I want to be an educator is to inspire students whether it is in their academic or personal aspects.

Respectful- Students are diverse in nature and as teacher I want to show respect to my students by listening to them and making them feel that I am their not to ridicule them but to enhance their abilities in learning. If you will show respect to them, your students will also show respect to you and to other people. Respect begets respect.

Honest- As a teacher, we must always show honesty to our students for them to realize that they should also be honest to other people.

Motivator- It maybe hard to for students to be motivated to learn but as teachers we have to show to them on how they can be motivated. Motivation plays a great role in the learning outcome of students. If we as teachers show motivation in teaching surely students will also be motivated in learning.

Kindness- Being kind to your students’ means that you are understanding, listening and feeling their needs and helping them to meet those needs especially in terms of learning.

Flexible-  teachers must be flexible in making strategies/methods in teaching. Students are diverse in nature and some might have the existing knowledge about the lessons but as educators we should always let our students be excited on what new concepts or ideas they will learn.

How I Will Incorporate Models and Mentors in My Classroom?
Describe a systematic plan for bringing models and mentors into your students’ lives in one or more domain(s) you plan to teach, such as math, English, science, music, and so on.

In teaching biology and the topic is all about DNA you need to make sure that they know the concept of DNA and how to make the model of DNA. Showing videos on the actual DNA and how to create model of DNA is essential for them to understand the lesson.

 After showing these videos, I will create an activity wherein they need to produce their own model of DNA and they must be creative on what things they will use.

In History, for them to understand the value of what happened on the past, modeling can be done by having students to make a role play. In addition, you can provide visual imagery activity just like asking them to create sketch or graphic organizer about the important events in the past.

Who Will Be My Education Mentor? What Would My Ideal Education Mentor Be Like?

An ideal education mentor for me is someone who has passion in teaching and learning. Furthermore, content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge and pedagogical knowledge must be on that person. Lastly, knowledge and skills of that education mentor are essential but without the right attitude towards teaching I will not consider that person him or her as one. In my own opinion these are the qualities that an ideal mentor should have.

  1. Good Role Model
  2. An inspiration to students
  3. Motivator
  4. With good sense of humor
  5. God fearing
  6. Punctual
  7. Passionate
  8. Flexible
  9. Open Minded
  10.  Respectful