Friday, February 5, 2010

Cognitive and Physical Dissonance

"The Macintosh uses an experimental pointing device called a ‘mouse’. There is no evidence that people want to use these things." - John Dvorak

"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new
discoveries, is not 'Eureka!', but 'That's funny…'" -Isaac Asimov

"Everything makes sense a bit at a time. But when you try to think of it all at once, it comes out wrong." Terry Pratchet

It's funny - I see this a lot when I do training sessions, the cognitive and physical dissonance that develops when people first try out an IWB. I'm not talking in the first minute because that's the wonder / drawing part. It's when they try and do something they usually do on their computer with a mouse but all of a sudden the image is a lot bigger and they have to use gross motor movements instead of the super fine movements with their mouse.

I love watching it though, mainly because it can be so quick from first try to fairly proficient. Sometimes within half an hour. - That's the technical side of things, what about the teaching that flows from that?

Does the IWB (eBeam) and other Ed Tech create a cognitive and (to a smaller extent) physical dissonance that makes teachers re-evaluate their teaching? What has it done for you and what have you seen in you colleagues?

Is the value in an IWB not just about the resources that it can bring to the learning environment, but that the teacher "had" to learn something profoundly new that wasn't part of their childhood experience?

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Nick Provenzano said...

I can say that it has made me more conscience of my handwriting. I lso feel more active in the class. I'm moving around and adjusting content on the board and the kids seemed more focus on me as I manipulate the information on the board. Before, I was more static behind my podium or desk as I flipped through slides. I like it more this way.


Hall Jackson said...

I agree, when I'm doing my demonstrations and training sessions, people always comment on my energy. What I think they are picking up on is the physical nature of using an IWB.

I do a hadndwriting "lesson" demonstration as part of my usual presentation to teachers - It is now a lot better that it was when I first started.

Mrs. Tenkely said...

I love watching teachers try out and learn new things on our Promethean Boards. Most of them won't use the pen, they perfer the fine motor skills on the computer. I think it is important that teachers remember what it is like to be the learner, to be challenged to think in different ways. IWB or something else, teachers all need to be the learner sometimes.