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[Xmca-l] Re: book of possible interest



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11 jul 2014 kl. 06:41 skrev Larry Purss <lpscholar2@gmail.com>:

> David,
> I have been following your reflections through this thread.
> You commented:
> 
> So it's almost always more useful for me to
> think of learning phenomena as NOT reducible to the physical, at least not
> in their unit of analysis
> 
> I have been reflecting on the notion of *bildung* as learning.
> The notion of *cultivation* and *disposition* and *comportment* as the
> potential of learning.
> I came across this quote from Gramsci who was questioning the notion of
> *laws* as the basis for making social predictions. Such *laws* excluded the
> subjective factor from history.
> Gramsci wrote on social process: "Objective always means 'humanly
> objective' which can be held to correspond exactly to 'historically
> subjective' "
> 
> Merleau-Ponty also explored what I refer to as *disposition* with this
> quote on the reality of history:
> History "awakens us to the importance of daily events and action. For it is
> a philosophy [of history -LP] which arouses in us a love for our times
> which are not the simple repetition of human eternity nor merely the
> conclusion of premises already postulated. It is a view that like the most
> fragile object of perception - a soap bubble, or a wave - or like the most
> simple dialogue, embraces indivisibly all the order and all the disorder of
> the world."
> 
> I read these passages from Gramsci and M-P  as a way of exploring
> *comportment* or *disposition* that is *learned*.  [bildung??] There is no
> necessary or sufficient standpoint for interpreting this inherently
> heterogeneous process. However we may potentially learn various
> *approaches* or *ways* of being-in-the-world through learning processes.
> The notion of *bildung* is a way to reflect on this learning process
> Larry
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> On Thu, Jul 10, 2014 at 3:54 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> 
>> On 10 July 2014 22:33, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:
>> 
>>> Huw:
>>> 
>>> Is learning material? In what sense? At what point?
>>> 
>> 
>> Historically, with Marx.  :)
>> 
>> The rest of your formations are subsumed by Baldwin's 1st and 2nd axioms of
>> genetic logic.  :)
>> 
>> As someone experienced with computation and computational processes, I do
>> find it quite straightfoward to think of memories as material impressions.
>> Cached values or lazy evaluation -- it's quite straightforward...  Not
>> rubbish, not garbage, but Babbage!
>> 
>> Best,
>> Huw
>> 
>> 
>> 
>>> 
>>> I guess I think of it this way. All phenomena in the universe are
>> physical,
>>> but only in the final analysis. When my father (who is a retired but
>>> unrepentant solar physicist) studies these phenomena he uses various
>> units
>>> of analysis (my father likes to think big, so his usual unit of analysis
>> is
>>> a solar emission many times larger than the earth, but sometimes,
>> depending
>>> on the problem, he will condescend to think about smaller particles like
>>> atomic nuclei). Some of these physical phenomena, when they cool down a
>>> little, are chemical as well, and because these phenomena are chemical as
>>> well as physical, the unit of analysis that is proper to them is the
>>> molecule and its motions, and not simply the particle (Dad doesn't care
>>> about these phenomena; he likes his physics hot).
>>> 
>>> Some of these chemical phenomena are biological as well, and here once
>>> again the unit of analysis has to change (e.g. to the cell) in order to
>>> take into account the new properties which come into being at this scale.
>>> Some biological phenomena are cultural-historical in turn, and here too
>> we
>>> must change the unit of analysis in order not to lose essential
>> information
>>> that is created with higher levels of organization and complexity.Of
>>> course, these cultural historical phenomena are all reducible to
>> biological
>>> phenomena, and therefore reducible to chemical and physical phenomena,
>> but
>>> only in the final analysis. Hey, in the final analysis, as Carolyn Porco
>>> says, we all get reduced to physical phenomena when the sun explodes and
>>> blows the particles that were once our bodies out into space, to enjoy
>>> eternal life...but only as physical phenomena.
>>> 
>>> In the meantime, if we want to understand cultural-historical phenomena
>> as
>>> such, we have to confront their higher levels of organization and
>>> complexity.The cultural historical phenomena that I am most interested in
>>> turn out to have another subset of phenomena which Halliday calls
>>> semiotic--that is, they are sociologically cultural-historical phenomena
>>> that stand, even if only for a fleeting instant,
>>> for psychologically cultural-historical phenomena. These phenomena are
>>> material too (that is, they are biological, chemical, and even
>>> physical), for the way things stand for other things is ultimately
>>> reducible to a thing: words are, in the final analysis, "made of living
>>> breath", as Shakespeare says, or "layers of moving air" if you prefer
>>> Engels.
>>> 
>>> But only in the final analysis. In the interim, too much information is
>>> lost when we reduce these semiotic phenomena to physical, material,
>>> things (for example, when my students try to model learner comprehension
>>> problems as pure phonetic discrimination without taking into account the
>>> layer of wording or meaning). So it's almost always more useful for me to
>>> think of learning phenomena as NOT reducible to the physical, at least
>> not
>>> in their unit of analysis. Actually, it seems to me that the
>>> general "cultural-historical" level of analysis is if anything a step
>>> closer to biology or chemistry or physics than the subset of cultural
>>> historical phenomena that I mean when I refer to learning, because to me
>>> learning is microgenetic, that is, POTENTIALLY ontogenetic, which is in
>>> turn POTENTIALLY sociogenetic, which (to me) is the general level of
>>> analysis we mean when we talk about cultural historical phenomena. So the
>>> real answer to Mike's colorful complaint about handles is not "Community
>> of
>>> Learners" but actually "physico-chemico-bio-socio-semiotic learning
>>> activities".
>>> 
>>> Time for that quantum physical cup of coffee you were talking about....
>>> 
>>> David Kellogg
>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>>> 
>>> 
>>> On 10 July 2014 08:53, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> 
>>>> David,
>>>> 
>>>> Just to be clear, the error I was referring to was the attribution of a
>>>> theory (as an adjective) to the material thing (learning).  It would be
>>>> like saying, I am going to make a Newtonian cup of coffee in the
>> morning
>>>> and a quantum mechanical cup of coffee in the afternoon.
>>>> 
>>>> I suppose colourful language serves the purpose of deliberate
>> vagueness.
>>>> It's hard to be trendy and have a precise point.
>>>> 
>>>> I fear we are soon approaching the "teach yourself activity theory for
>>>> dummies" book someday soon.  From my understanding, the theory itself
>>>> repudiates such a thing -- one cannot spoon feed theory -- but I don't
>>>> think that will stop folk trying.
>>>> 
>>>> I see no problem (or contradiction) in top down approaches.  Solving a
>>>> problem in general is a powerful approach to many problems.  For many
>>>> problems the concrete details are amenable to design and configuration,
>>> one
>>>> can often choose tools to suit the proposed solution rather than
>>>> vice-versa.   But from an educational perspective, I see no alternative
>>>> than starting with the individual, ofcourse one can have general
>>> strategies
>>>> in doing so -- waiting to be asked before giving an explanation etc.
>>>> 
>>>> Nice chatting.
>>>> 
>>>> Best,
>>>> Huw
>>>> 
>>>> On 9 July 2014 22:46, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> Huw:
>>>>> 
>>>>> Helen has written a remarkable, important book. I gather it's part of
>>> her
>>>>> Ph.D. thesis, but it doesn't really read like a Ph.D. thesis. It
>> reads
>>>> like
>>>>> a teacher-trainer (or "professional development consultant", or
>>> whatever
>>>> we
>>>>> are supposed to call them) with a problem who eventually, with a
>> little
>>>>> help from the classics of cultural historical psychology and a lot of
>>>> help
>>>>> from a co-teacher (who has a somewhat bookish, inert but nevertheless
>>>>> respectful and open acquaintance with those classics) achieves a very
>>>> open
>>>>> but nevertheless very workable solution.
>>>>> 
>>>>> So the bit I quoted represents the problem, or rather, two problems.
>> On
>>>> the
>>>>> one hand, Helen is trying to do something new: she wants to bring new
>>>> CHAT
>>>>> concepts to bear on extant classroom activities and modify them in
>> ways
>>>>> that she is confident will work. On the other, Helen is working with
>>> some
>>>>> pretty experienced (and even somewhat brutalized) teachers: they have
>>>> seen
>>>>> "Professional Development" fads come and go, collected their free
>>> lunches
>>>>> and go on doing things the old way.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Helen achieves her solution from the bottom up. Eventually, she does
>>>> find a
>>>>> teacher who can teacher her a lot and who, even though Helen herself
>>>>> is uniquely gifted, with not only the theoretical background we all
>>>> share,
>>>>> but also considerable first hand experience as a teacher and a
>> parent,
>>>> can
>>>>> nevertheless be taught in turn. But as you can see from the extract,
>>>> she's
>>>>> extremely open, even to savage, unfair, and somewhat obtuse
>> criticisms.
>>>>> Mike's critique of "cultural historical" is not that it is an
>>>>> epistemological error or a typological one, or that it puts the
>> product
>>>>> "culture" before the process "history". It's not even that it
>> suggests
>>>> that
>>>>> on the odd day Piagetian activities might be taking place, which, by
>>> the
>>>>> way, is probably true, since these teachers were mostly trained
>> during
>>>> the
>>>>> "reign" of Piaget in the sixties and seventies.
>>>>> 
>>>>> No, Mike's complaint is really, if you will pardon the expression, a
>>> wank
>>>>> of a complaint. He is just complaining that the name is uncool; it
>>>> doesn't
>>>>> sound like the popular teachers would like it; the name won't go with
>>> an
>>>>> embossed moose like "Abercrombie and Fitch" or "community of
>>>>> learners" does. I think we have to accept that responsive, sensitive
>>>>> teachers inevitably end up internalizing some of the worst aspects of
>>>>> adolescent thinking, and this is an example. I might even say it's a
>>>>> bullshit complaint. It's crap, etc. (But this is one of those
>>>>> language situations where redundancy does not suggest development.)
>>>>> 
>>>>> I guess if I encountered a bullshit complaint like that I would
>>> complain
>>>> a
>>>>> little about "community of learners". I think that "community of
>>>>> learners" is essentially a way of saying "socio-psychological": it's
>>>>> relevant to everyday teaching, but it doesn't tell us much about how
>>> the
>>>>> "socio" got there, whereas "cultural-historical" does. I might even
>> ask
>>>> if
>>>>> Mike is going to try to teach physics, chemistry, biology, or history
>>> to
>>>>> kids without some way of saying "physico-chemical" or
>>>> "chemico-biological",
>>>>> or "biologico-social". If not, then I don't see anything wrong with
>>>>> teaching language, including the language of teaching, as something
>>>>> "socio-semiotic" or "historico-cultural". But then, I never was one
>> of
>>>> the
>>>>> cool kids.
>>>>> 
>>>>> My problem is this. I too would like to write a book now. I have two
>> in
>>>>> mind, and they are both practical books about teacher training,
>>>>> similar in their targets to Helen's book, which is why I am studying
>> it
>>>>> carefully. But I find that the books that I have in mind are really
>>>> "about
>>>>> something" in a way that Helen's book is not. I don't mean that
>> Helen's
>>>>> book has no object of study: like the title says, the object of study
>>> is
>>>>> teacher development. What I mean is that the teaching has no clear
>>> object
>>>>> of teaching: it's not specifically about teaching math or literacy or
>>>>> anything else but about teaching in general. The books I have in mind
>>> are
>>>>> really about teaching literacy (I think I want to try to teach
>> WRITING
>>>>> before READING) and teaching science (I think I want to try a "hands
>>> off"
>>>>> approach that emphasizes word meanings instead of laboratory
>>>> experiments).
>>>>> And I am finding that I when I do this the result is not at all the
>>> kind
>>>> of
>>>>> "bottom up" thing that Helen does; it's very top down.
>>>>> 
>>>>> David Kellogg
>>>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> On 9 July 2014 07:33, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>>> Colourful.  The complaint seems perfectly valid though:  a
>>> typological
>>>>> and
>>>>>> epistemological error all in one conflated term.  It suggests that
>> on
>>>> the
>>>>>> odd hours of the day there are Piagetian activities taking place.
>>> Was
>>>>> this
>>>>>> part of the point of the chapter?
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> Best,
>>>>>> Huw
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> On 8 July 2014 21:40, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> I'm actually in the middle of Chapter Three right now. What I can
>>>> tell
>>>>>> you
>>>>>>> is that Helen's first two chapters are a kind of "Who's Who" at
>>> xmca,
>>>>>> with
>>>>>>> Helen reading the great classics (in the wrong order) and talking
>>> to
>>>>>> Andy,
>>>>>>> Greg, and others on this list. But beyond the litte shout-outs to
>>>> xmca,
>>>>>> in
>>>>>>> Chapter Three, you find interesting problems like this. Helen is
>>>>> setting
>>>>>> up
>>>>>>> a "Professional Learning ZPD". This an acronymy within an acronym
>>> (an
>>>>>>> "acro-acronym-nym", like the group I used to belong to in New
>> York
>>>> and
>>>>>>> Paris, called "ACT-UP"), and in general Helen seems to have some
>>>>> trouble
>>>>>>> with names. On pp. 58-59, she writes.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> "In PLZ 4 I wrote the title 'Features of cultural Historical
>>> Learning
>>>>>>> Activities' across a piece of butcher's paper and asked the grou
>> to
>>>>>>> brainstorm features of activities that would be consistent with
>>>>> cultural
>>>>>>> historical theory. After a few suggestions, Mike suddenly
>>> interrupted
>>>>>> with:
>>>>>>> MIKE: Can I ask, Helen, why such a wank of a name?
>>>>>>> HELEN: Cultural-historical?
>>>>>>> MIKE: Yeah, what a bullshit name.
>>>>>>> DEB: What should it be Mike?
>>>>>>> MIKE: What does it mean to anyone? Is that relevant to anyone
>> that
>>>>>>> name? Cultural-historical learning. What does that mean?
>>>>>>> HELEN: Well....
>>>>>>> MIKE: It's crap.
>>>>>>> HELEN: Well, I don't think that you, that's the name of teh
>> theoyr,
>>>>>>> Cultural historical theory, but I think in terms of schools using
>>> teh
>>>>>>> theory they talk about Communities of Learners.
>>>>>>> MIKE: Yeah, but why don't they call it that?
>>>>>>> HELEN: OK, so (I start crossing out "cultural historical" and
>>>> changing
>>>>> it
>>>>>>> to "Communities of Learners")
>>>>>>> MIKE: That name is like calliing the ultra net site for teachers
>>>>> 'design
>>>>>>> space'. It has no relevance to the name whatsoever, and to use
>>>>>> it--features
>>>>>>> of cultural historical learning--sounds like a load of crap. It
>>>>>>> doesn't have any relevance ot what it means. If you said to me
>>>> cultural
>>>>>>> historical learning, I go ....
>>>>>>> BETH: I actually thought it meant talking about he past (general
>>>>>>> agreement).
>>>>>>> MIKE: That's what it implies, the past and how you used to teach.
>>>>>>> HELEN: I suppose I'm just trying to familiarize you with the term
>>>>>> (general
>>>>>>> agreement)
>>>>>>> MIKE: If you call it community of learners then it's something
>>> that's
>>>>>>> relevant."
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Helen then makes the (cultural-historical) point that words have
>> a
>>>>>> history,
>>>>>>> but they are not necessarily YOUR history--for Helen, "cultural
>>>>>> historical"
>>>>>>> calls up a whole series of quite precise concepts, while
>> "Community
>>>> of
>>>>>>> Learners" is kind of vague and undefined. But for the teachers
>> (who
>>>>> are,
>>>>>> I
>>>>>>> must say, not exactly reticent about sharing, and do not limit
>>>>> themselves
>>>>>>> to sharing their expertise) what you get is old times.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> It's funny that they ignore the word culture. I always thought
>> that
>>>>>>> "cultural historical" is a little bit of the cart before the
>>>> horse....
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> David Kellogg
>>>>>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> On 8 July 2014 21:40, Peter Smagorinsky <smago@uga.edu> wrote:
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> The Practice of Teachers' Professional Development
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> A Cultural-Historical Approach
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> Helen Grimmett (Monash University, Australia)
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> This book uses Vygotsky's cultural-historical theory to
>> provide a
>>>>>> unique
>>>>>>>> theorisation of teachers' professional development as a
>>> practice. A
>>>>>>>> practice can be described as the socially structured actions
>> set
>>> up
>>>>> to
>>>>>>>> produce a product or service aimed at meeting a collective
>> human
>>>>> need.
>>>>>> In
>>>>>>>> this case, collaborative, interventionist work with teachers in
>>> ...
>>>>>> Click
>>>>>>>> here for a free preview and full description<
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>> 
>>> 
>> http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?f=001ZduyW2xyB1USw9R1YjQno7GI-mDLfJ6m-729UFbNgCKe6Z_p9GP7xjN9IHr0mfZ1yni-XmxHyPfAaNcVjlENvx4l8ySiyRYKHRvvg2E6WbMlf3hNShpk2qTuRRu0ZenYc1mrXxe68_BX4FXljTnHjOx91vJalGeivvaQfmQF57rpGgcDrJe9bprlVyXQwjSo0U6yk-QJ1S5miZfuS7ohswmNs3UZWGMucMgWJyU6E_J3d8QHyWjpGuBM8i2twLXGBPHkZb6hFN4pF6PT3r3M7HYvwFdzAzSfRvpCd90DvQMVDuqkf5VY3ccoD6FppEGF&c=0Y23gLfSZ1jN_yGPyItMZic7SWiIoOcRfcrQWB0JYs9lkVW149lxUQ==&ch=ioZBoxRIwDxdvg-uu6NEwI-E45lgW01U_INO86ZNyJpwbp9zcKnCIA==
>>>>>>>>> .
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>> 
>>> 
>>