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[Xmca-l] Re: Heathcote and Immagination



Hi Robert
Robert - I appreciate your guidance on the best readings by Maxine Greene
on this topic - it is certainly worth reconnecting with her work on
imagination and I look forward to reading more.

Kind regards
Sue 



On 2/03/2016 3:55 am, "Robert Lake" <boblake@georgiasouthern.edu> wrote:

>Hi Mike and Ed,
>Thanks for your queries and comments on Maxine Greene.
>Her contribution to the field is focused more on social  imagination
>rather
>than the commodified and indivualistic versions of neoliberal R and D
>departments.
>Here are a few quotes the offer a window into what she meant by this
>concept.
>The link to more of her work is in the box below.
>My doctoral studies were predicated on her work along with Vera
>John-Steiner's and since then I have found
>many connections to LSV and   the socio-cultural  aspects of consciousness
>that are so wonderfully represented
>in the extended  XCMA community.
>
>Robert Lake
>
>
>*We also have our social imagination: the capacity to invent visions of
>what should be and what might be in our deficient society, on the streets
>where we live, in our schools. As I write of social imagination, I am
>reminded of Jean-Paul Sartre’s **declaration that “it is on the day that
>we
>can conceive of a different state of affairs that a new light falls on our
>troubles and our suffering and that we decide that these are unbearable”*
>
>     - Maxine Greene: *Releasing the Imagination*. (p. 5).
>
>
>*"Our very realization that the individual does not precede community may
>summon up images of relation, of the networks of concern in which we
>teachers still do our work and, as we do so, create and recreate
>ourselves.
>More and more of us, for all our postmodern preoccupations, are aware of
>how necesary it is to keep such visions of possibility before our eyes in
>the face of rampant carelessness and alteration and fragmentation.*
>
>
>*If is out of this kind of thinking, I still believe, that the ground of a
>critical community can be opened in our teaching and in our schools. It is
>out of such thinking that public spaces may be regained. The challenge is
>to make the ground palpable and visible to our students, to make possible
>the interplay of multiple plurality of consciousnesses --- and their
>recalcitrances and their resistances, along with their affirmations, their
>"songs of love." And, yes, it is to work for responsiveness to principles
>of equity, principles of equality, and principles of freedom, which still
>can be named within contexts of caring and concern. The principles and the
>contexts have to be chosen by living human beings against their own
>life-worlds and in the light of their lives with others, by persons able
>to
>call, to say, to sing, and -- using their imaginations, tapping their
>courage -- to transform."*
>
>     - Maxine Greene, *Releasing the Imagination**, *pp. 197-198.
>
>
>On Tue, Mar 1, 2016 at 11:16 AM, Ed Wall <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:
>
>> Mike
>>
>>      I’m not entirely positive which discussion you are referring below,
>> but, although I probably have it, I don’t have it pulled out.
>>
>>      Also I’m not entirely sure what questions you say are left hanging;
>> questions sometimes have a way of being answered (smile).
>>
>>       Interesting you mention Maxine Greene as, in a way, what I
>>consider
>> as the most relevant of her writings here was early and titled “The
>>Teacher
>> as Stranger.” However, that is my perspective on these things.
>>
>>        I’m not quite ready for "drama and imagination" although I would
>>be
>> fine, in the interim, with "teacher and imagination.”
>>
>>        I have, perhaps, a few things of interest to say in my reply to
>> Susan which I will get to later today.
>>
>> Ed
>>
>> > On Feb 29, 2016, at  7:53 PM, mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu> wrote:
>> >
>> > Seems like the section on imagination you mention, Susan, fits right
>>in
>> > with that thread of xmca discussion. Linking drama and imagination
>>seems
>> > essential to me and you mention several who have done so effectively.
>>You
>> > also remind me to go back and re-read Maxine Greene! Now I am further
>> > behind than ever. Better stop reading. :-)
>> >
>> > Ed, do you have that discussion pulled out and re-examined. It left a
>>LOT
>> > of questions unanswered.
>> >
>> > Maybe we need a header called drama and imagination?
>> >
>> > If so, I vote we add Raymond Williams to the discussion.
>> > mike
>> >
>> > On Mon, Feb 29, 2016 at 12:39 PM, Susan Davis <s.davis@cqu.edu.au>
>> wrote:
>> >
>> >> Hi Ed
>> >>
>> >> Both Vygotsky and Heathcote both understood that the work of the
>> >> imagination is not only an individual mental exercise but in
>>inspired by
>> >> and is expressed through interactions with others, conceptual tools
>>and
>> >> ultimately material means and artefacts.
>> >>
>> >> I think Vygotksy described the different ways imagination worked very
>> well
>> >> indeed and I have summarised that in the book. Some key quotes from
>>him
>> >> include:
>> >> Everything the imagination creates is always based on elements taken
>> from
>> >> reality, from a person’s previous
>> >> experience. The most fantastic creations are nothing other than a new
>> >> combination of elements that have ultimately been extracted from
>> reality.
>> >> (p. 13)
>> >>
>> >> The first law of creativity: The
>> >> act of imagination depends directly on the richness and variety of a
>> >> person’s
>> >> previous experience because this experience provides the material
>>from
>> >> which
>> >> the products of creativity are constructed. The richer a person’s
>> >> experience,
>> >> the richer is the material his imagination has access to. Great works
>> and
>> >> discoveries are always the result of an enormous amount of previously
>> >> accumulated experience. The implication of this for education is
>>that,
>> if
>> >> we
>> >> want to build a relatively strong foundation for a child’s
>>creativity,
>> >> what we
>> >> must do is broaden the experiences we provide him with.(pp. 14-15)
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> The right kind of education
>> >> involves awakening in the child what already exists within him,
>>helping
>> >> him to
>> >> develop it and directing this development in a particular direction.
>>(p.
>> >> 51)
>> >> –Vygotsky,
>> >> L. (2004) “Imagination and creativity in childhood.” Journal of
>>Russian
>> >> and Was tEuropean PsychologyVol. 42 No. 1.
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> This work recognises therefore that to inspire imagination means
>> ‘feeding’
>> >> the imagination and it is therefore the teacher’s responsibility to
>>work
>> >> with children and bring in various tools, processes and provocations
>> that
>> >> will draw them into creative processes.
>> >>
>> >> In terms of working in drama I think the notion of the social
>> imagination
>> >> comes into play (though that is a term more closely associated with
>> Maxine
>> >> Green) and collectively a group creates something together -
>>something
>> >> that did not exist previously and which would not exist in the same
>>form
>> >> if created individually.  In that sense it is helpful to draw on the
>> >> language of improvised drama to understand the process -  someone
>> >> generally makes an ‘offer’ to begin the imaginative exploration,
>> >> practically speaking in embodied action it can be a physical or
>>verbal
>> >> offer.  Multiple offers can at times be made but one has to be
>>accepted,
>> >> and then extended upon. This process keeps going and as those who
>>have
>> >> studied improvised drama knows, the key is then to draw the threads
>> >> together and find an appropriate conclusion.  Now what this means in
>> >> practice is a fluid interplay of power shifts as people forfeit their
>> >> right to have their every idea accepted (which is unworkable),
>>trusting
>> >> that if they go with the one that is on the table or seems to ‘grab’
>> >> people,  they will be able to contribute and that the outcome will be
>> >> something that they are a part of and will be worthwhile. That is
>>social
>> >> imagination in action. Decisions are often made in the moment - not
>> after
>> >> exhaustive dialogue - although reflection on what has gone on and
>>been
>> >> created often occurs afterwards. This is especially the case if you
>>were
>> >> to be devising a new work. The whole process has to be underpinned
>>by a
>> >> sense of trust and a belief that as a group the give and take of the
>> >> process will generate something that has been worth the effort. It
>> doesn’t
>> >> always, but that is often part of the educational process with
>>children
>> >> and participants - 'what do you feel worked, what didn’t, what offers
>> >> ended up proving fruitful, were there ‘blocks’ that we couldn’t work
>> >> around?  If we did it again what would you change?’ and so on. (see
>>some
>> >> of Keith Sawyer’s work on improvisation for more insights on how
>>these
>> >> processes work and why he believes improvised theatre is perhaps the
>> >> highest form of creativity)
>> >>
>> >> It is writerly in Barthes sense in that while a ‘text' has often been
>> >> initiated, it is deliberately left unfinished and the participants
>>must
>> >> make imaginative leaps, connections and new solutions to be able to
>> >> complete the text or dramatic encounter. What is also interesting in
>>a
>> >> drama process is that you can play it multiple times, from different
>> >> perspectives and something different can be revealed each time.  In
>> Boal’s
>> >> work with forum theatre people from an audience and the
>>disenfranchised
>> >> are also invited to step up and take on a role within a version (as
>> >> spectactors), therefore finding ways to shift power dynamics and to
>> >> explore alternative solutions.
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> I hope this is of interest.
>> >> Cheers
>> >> Sue
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> On 1/03/2016 4:58 am, "Ed Wall" <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:
>> >>
>> >>> Susan
>> >>>
>> >>>    Coming a little late to this conversation and thinking about your
>> >>> comments last July on Vygotsky and imagination, I was wondering if
>>any
>> of
>> >>> that played a large role in your book. In particular and if so, how
>>did
>> >>> Heathcote, one might say, pragmatically theorize imagination? It
>>seems,
>> >>> given, what you have written in the present thread that she seems to
>> have
>> >>> created moments through a stance that "respected and worked with the
>> >>> material they offered, drawing out significance, considering the
>> >>> implications and working dialogically with very alternative views
>>from
>> >>> her own.” This, in some of the literature, is indicative of an
>> >>> imaginative ‘leap’ that is stabilized in the ‘waking state.’ In a
>> sense,
>> >>> the moment becomes, in somewhat the sense of Barthes, ‘writeable.'
>> >>>
>> >>> Ed Wall
>> >>>
>> >>>> On Feb 24, 2016, at  5:32 AM, Susan Davis <s.davis@cqu.edu.au>
>>wrote:
>> >>>>
>> >>>> Thanks Robert,
>> >>>> It’s great to have the book published as part of your series.  The
>> book
>> >>>> is
>> >>>> called “Learning that matters: Revitalising Heathcote’s Rolling
>>Role
>> for
>> >>>> the digital age”.
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>
>> 
>>https://www.sensepublishers.com/catalogs/bookseries/imagination-and-praxi
>> >>>> s/
>> >>>> learning-that-matters/
>> >>>>
>> >>>> For those who haven’t heard of Heathcote before, she was a ‘master’
>> >>>> teacher who achieved international recognition for her teaching
>> practice
>> >>>> in the 70s and 80s - in particular for pioneering processes such as
>> >>>> Mantle
>> >>>> of the Expert - which use role and fictional contexts to position
>> >>>> children
>> >>>> as ‘experts’ and active agents in investigative processes. She also
>> >>>> invented this system called ‘Rolling Role’ which is a form of
>> >>>> trans-disciplinary learning - where multiple classes work with the
>> same
>> >>>> common context, but from their particular frame or subject
>> perspective.
>> >>>> The beauty of it is that no one group ‘owns’ the outcome, but
>>groups
>> >>>> regularly ‘publish’ and share artefacts and outcomes throughout the
>> >>>> process, with each group having to use and ‘roll’ the work of what
>>has
>> >>>> gone before.  It was a system she believed was perfectly suited for
>> >>>> revisiting in the digital age… so that is what the book hopes to
>> assist
>> >>>> with… the Vygotskian and CHAT work was very helpful in
>>conceptualising
>> >>>> and
>> >>>> understanding this work.
>> >>>>
>> >>>> At times reading the work of Vygotsky and Heathcote it felt like
>>they
>> >>>> could have been writing about education today!
>> >>>>
>> >>>> Educational experience, no less than theoretical research,
>> >>>> teaches us that, in practice, a straightforward learning of
>>concepts
>> >>>> always
>> >>>> proves impossible and educationally fruitless. Usually, any teacher
>> >>>> setting out
>> >>>> on this road achieves nothing except a meaningless acquisition of
>> words,
>> >>>> mere
>> >>>> verbalization in children, which is nothing more than simulation
>>and
>> >>>> imitation
>> >>>> of corresponding concepts which, in reality, are concealing a
>>vacuum.
>> >>>> In
>> >>>> such cases, the child assimilates not
>> >>>> concepts but words, and he fills his memory more than his thinking.
>> As a
>> >>>> result, he ends up helpless in the face of any sensible attempt to
>> apply
>> >>>> any of
>> >>>> this acquired knowledge. Essentially, this method of
>>teaching/learning
>> >>>> concepts, a purely scholastic and verbal method of teaching, which
>>is
>> >>>> condemned
>> >>>> by everybody and which advocates the replacement of acquisition of
>> >>>> living
>> >>>> knowledge by the assimilation of dead and empty verbal schemes,
>> >>>> represents
>> >>>> the
>> >>>> most basic failing in the field of education. (Vygotsky 1934/1994a,
>> pp.
>> >>>> 356-7)
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>> So – getting rid of the dummy run. On the face of it you
>> >>>> have a rather interesting paradox in drama, because it looks like
>> drama
>> >>>> is
>> >>>> entirely artificial and that the whole thing would be a dummy run
>>– we
>> >>>> are
>> >>>> only
>> >>>> pretending actually.  And we use words
>> >>>> like pretend and play and in our culture it does suggest that it’s
>> >>>> ephemeral
>> >>>> and there’s no real work/life purpose for it…. So it seems to me we
>> >>>> need to
>> >>>> look and see what it is that makes something NOT feel like a dummy
>> run…
>> >>>> It seemed to me that one of the important aspects of not
>> >>>> being a dummy run is that it matters now, we feel like its urgent
>>now.
>> >>>> (Heathcote 1993, Tape 9)
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>> Cheers
>> >>>> Sue
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>> Dr Susan Davis
>> >>>> Senior Lecturer | School of Education & the Arts | Higher Education
>> >>>> Division
>> >>>> CQUniversity Australia, Noosa Campus |
>> >>>> PO Box 1128, Qld 4566
>> >>>> P +61 (0)7 5440 7007 | X 547007 | M +61 400 000 000| E
>> >>>> s.davis@cqu.edu.au
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>>
>> >>>> On 24/02/2016 12:14 am, "Robert Lake" <boblake@georgiasouthern.edu>
>> >>>> wrote:
>> >>>>
>> >>>>> ​Susan Davis has published a book that weaves LSV, Dorothy
>>Heathcote
>> >>>>> and
>> >>>>> CHAT
>> >>>>> into one seamless, present tense unfolding of "rolling role". If
>> anyone
>> >>>>> would like to write a review of it I can get you a copy. It has
>>been
>> >>>>> five
>> >>>>> years since Heathcote's passing and I suspect her work will become
>> more
>> >>>>> and
>> >>>>> more  important in this era of standardized everything.
>> >>>>>
>> >>>>> *Robert Lake*
>> >>>>>
>> >>>>> 
>>https://www.sensepublishers.com/media/2709-learning-that-matters.pdf
>> >>>>>
>> >>>>>
>> >>>>> For a sense of the dynamic of  Dorothy's pedagogy, scroll to
>>about 5
>> >>>>> minutes into this.
>> >>>>>
>> >>>>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owKiUO99qrw
>> >>>>
>> >>>> <default.xml>
>> >>>
>> >>>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >
>> >
>> > --
>> >
>> > It is the dilemma of psychology to deal as a natural science with an
>> object
>> > that creates history. Ernst Boesch
>>
>>
>>
>
>
>-- 
>Robert Lake  Ed.D.
>Associate Professor
>Social Foundations of Education
>Dept. of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading
>Georgia Southern University
>Secretary/Treasurer-AERA- Paulo Freire Special Interest Group
>Webpage: https://georgiasouthern.academia.edu/RobertLake
>P. O. Box 8144
>Phone: (912) 478-0355
>Fax: (912) 478-5382
>Statesboro, GA  30460
>*If you want to build a ship, don't drum up the men to gather the wood or
>divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast
>and endless sea- *Antoine de Saint Exupery (1948).

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