Saturday, May 5, 2007

The nature of knowledge

Where does knowledge reside? Can it really be measured by standardised tests where students fill in bubbles?
Howard Gardner claimed everyone is intelligent, but not all are intelligent in the linguistic sense. How can we measure these other eight intelligences, and do we want to limit their development by doing so?
Knowing does not just happen inside your brain, as claimed by some. It is also interpersonal. It is social. It is not cheating. Think about the present business world where our students are headed. Does anyone give tests there? Are business people collaborating on projects there?
Recently a lot has been written in the blogosphere about collaboration. When I write this or lesson plans or anything, I have several IM windows open, a couple Skype chats going, am listening to audio blogs (I know, I need to do mine) or podcasts, am checking Ning and Jaiku and email. Do we really think kids aren't while they do homework online? Homework is already social and those who know how to collaborate are ahead of the game!
I don't know how to get away from the tests. I don't have th answers. But when those entering Kindergarten this fall graduate in 2020 and get their teaching certificates 4 years later, I really don't think they will assess students with bubble exams.
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1 comment:

Robyn McMaster said...

In the work I do based on what we now know about the brain, we celebrate what we learn rather than testing it. Brings the end results of curiosity to light as we share with wider community. Yours is a very interesting and thoughtful blog...