[xmca] RE: Request RE tools for thought

From: David Williamson Shaffer <dws who-is-at education.wisc.edu>
Date: Fri Aug 31 2007 - 08:05:33 PDT

Hi, Ellice—

I would love to have you come to the, but I agree the commute would be a

I’m taking the liberty of copying this answer to the listserv; I hope you
don’t mind. I thought others might have a better suggestion than I, or might
be otherwise interested.

For the audience you’re interested in (MAT preservice teachers) the pieces
that I use that would come closest, I think, would be:

Brosterman, Inventing Kindergarten, pp. 30-103
Papert, Mindstorms, pp. 19-37, 55-94, 135-155
Cuban, Teachers and Machines, pp. 51-103
Kalmbach, From Liquid Paper to Typewriters, pp. 57-68
Shaffer, How Computer Games Can Help Children Learn, pp. 41-71
DiSessa, Changing Minds, 1-28

Of these, Brosterman, Cuban, and Kalmbach are historical, but really
interesting as case studies. Cuban is the most skeptical of the lot in terms
of the impact of technology on learning. Brosterman is the most engaging of
the three, but geared toward younger students and is the least theoretical
of the lot. Kalmbach is a nice short article, although not about math and
science. The others are more current, and all look at the interaction
between technology and thinking in the context of particular case studies in
math and science ed--in particular how new cognitive tools require reexaming
what we teach and how we teach it.

There are many others out there, of course; these are just the ones I use.
If I was going to pick just one I'd pick the Shaffer piece. But then I'm
biased! ;-) No, seriously, diSessa's chapter is pretty good as a stand
alone, especially for math/science teachers. And of course Mindstorms is a

I hope that is helpful....


-----Original Message-----
From: Forman, Ellice [mailto:ellice@education.pitt.edu]
Sent: Friday, August 31, 2007 8:06 AM
To: dws@education.wisc.edu
Subject: Request RE tools for thought

No, I'm not asking to be admitted to your course (although I would like to
be--but the commute is a killer). I'm working with a doc student, Eli
Silk, who is teaching my section of a graduate Ed Psych course to MAT
students in math and science education. We're looking for a good reading on
tools for thought for preservice teachers in these disciplines. Yea, I
know--just one reading? Any thoughts? I'm considering a chapter in the
Kozulin book on psychological tools but taking a chapter out of context
doesn't seem good. This course is using cases to help students apply
theories of learning to teaching. Do you have another suggestion? (Thanks
for your post on xmca.)

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Received on Fri Aug 31 08:12 PDT 2007

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