Sunday, November 18, 2012

Cognitivism in Practice

          Two chapters were explored this week from my class at Walden University from the book Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works “Cues, Questions, and Advance Organizers” and “Summarizing and Note Taking” both use cognitive learning theories.  These instructional strategies not only help students become better at being organized, but also help students retain what is being learned in the classroom and understand new content that is being learned. Also, we were to explore Concept Mapping and Virtual Field Trip tools.  These tools correlate with the instructional strategies and cognitive learning theories by having students discover new ways of learning ideas and information by using technology.
            The first instructional strategies “Cues, Questions, and Advance Organizers” offer teachers information to teach students ways of understanding content being learned with embedding technology.  The authors suggest that “Cues, Questions, and Advance Organizers” “focuses on enhancing students’ abilities to retrieve, use, and organize information about a topic” (Pitler, Hubbell, Kuhn and Malenoski, 2007). By using these types of strategies and technology can help students retain information being learned such as word processing applications, spreadsheet software, organizing and brainstorming software, and multimedia programs they can help students retain the information by evoking multiple senses and help store information in a students memory because images are being used, developed and seen. 
            When it comes to “Summarizing and Note Taking” the authors suggests that “summarizing and note taking focus on enhancing students’ ability to synthesize information and distill it into concise new form.  Teachers can help students separate important information from extraneous information and state the information in their own words” (Pitler, Hubbell, Kuhn and Malenoski, 2007).  Although in my middle school art class students do not usually have to note take they do have to summarize information that is being learned and use that information to create artworks of their own.  The ideas that this chapter has offered like wikis and blogs are great ways for students to take ideas that have been learned and summarize them by using these types of technology.  These types of technologies can help students to have reciprocal teaching where others can share, clarify, and question each other.
            Concept Mapping and Virtual Field Trip tools are great ways for students to explore new ideas and old.  These tools help students make mental pictures of information without leaving the classroom.  These tools connect with the principles of cognitive learning theory by having students replicate memory of ideas learned, become organized, supports Paivio’s dual coding hypothesis, information that is stored as images and text, and visualize tools (Laureate Education, 2010).  All of these technologies help students keep new information that is being given to them and allows it to be stored in their memory.
Laureate Education, Inc. (2010). Cognitive learning theories. Baltimore, MD: Dr. Michael Orey.

Pitler, H., Hubbell, E., Kuhn, M., & Malenoski, K. (2007). Using technology with classroom instruction that works. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.


  1. Amanda,
    I agree with your comments about the necessity in summarizing content for effective synthesis of the information. Teaching art, my students do not have as much opportunity for the written note taking that a student might need in other subject matter but we both know that having a student attempt to visualize a principle of design such as Harmony can be daunting. Understanding requires breakdown of the visual or written definition for a student to be able to visualize and create an image that contains this value. The use of technology as you have identified can also be a great teacher’s assistant in helping student’s acquisition of understanding. I teach AP Studio this year and in doing so I am becoming very appreciative of the value of technology specifically with the use of peer blogs for critical reflection, and the strengthening of learning that comes with the possibility for dual coding that exist with tech learning tools such as virtual field trips and concept mapping.
    Thanks for your post,

  2. Amanda,
    You stated, “Although in my middle school art class students do not usually have to note take they do have to summarize information that is being learned and use that information to create artworks of their own”. As an elective teacher it becomes a challenge to utilize some of the technology introduced by Walden. But like you, creating student driven blogs etc. is the way to go. My wood working students could post pictures of their projects, awards or blue prints.