Reflection is an important component of the learning process. It can NOT be seen as an add-on, something to be cut if time is running short. Unfortunately that is precisely what happens most often.
We have all heard John Dewey’s quote:
“We don’t learn from experience, we learn from reflecting on the experience”
Reflection also takes on an important role in documenting learning, blogging as pedagogy and formative assessment. Asking a learner to to simply “reflect” on their experience, asking a teacher to reflect on a lesson taught or asking students to “reflect” on their learning, will often be met with blank stares. Being able to reflect is a skill to be learned, a habit to develop. Reflection requires metacognition (thinking about your thinking), articulation of that thinking and the ability to make connections (past, present, future, outliers, relevant information, etc.).
In addition to inherent components of reflection, which traditionally have been viewed as internal (thinking about one’s own learning and that thinking primarily benefiting ourselves), we need to take a closer look at amplifying reflection by sharing our reflection transparently (learning how to articulate and make our thinking visible to others and the learning benefiting ourselves AND others). By sharing our reflection beyond a teacher or a classmate, we acknowledge our voice as learners and the role that it can play in the learning process (our own process or the one of others).
In this challenge, you will amplify your reflection about a chosen topic, theme, a book, a conversation, a movie, a TED talk, experience(s) related to your work, professional passion of yours, etc. Be creative! Don’t just think about what these experiences mean to you in your head, but
- articulate your thoughts, your connections to other areas of your work or experiences and write them down with the purpose of sharing it via your blog.
- use a reflection strategy that works for you or choose from several ones that we are sharing below.
- be metagognitive about your learning process. How do you regulate and maximize your learning?
- share these strategies with an audience greater than one.
- leave the link to your blog post in the comment section below.
Here are a few routines, taxonomies, and prompts that support reflection in ourselves and give a variety of choices to grow as reflective, metacognitive learners.
Reflective Teacher by Peter Pappas
Bloom’s Remembering – Reflection: What did I do?
Bloom’s Understanding – Reflection: What was important about what I did? Did I meet my goals?
Bloom’s Applying – Reflection: When did I do this before? Where could I use this again?
Bloom’s Analyzing – Reflection: Do I see any patterns or relationships in what I did?
Bloom’s Evaluating – Reflection: How well did I do? What worked? What do I need to improve?
Bloom’s Creating – Reflection: What should I do next? What’s my plan / design?
Keywords & Prompts
Four Dimensions of Reflective Learning by Karen Barnstable . Also look at 40 Reflection question to help you look back, forward, inward and outward by Edutopia.
- I. Thinking Back
- II. Thinking Forward
- III. Thinking Inward
- IV. Thinking Outward
What? So What?
- Describe the experience; outline what happened that compelled you to think about and change your behavior (i.e. learn).
- So What?
- Describe what difference it makes; outline what impact or meaning it has for you (or why it should matter to others).
- Now What?
- Describe what’s in store for the future now that you’ve learned from this experience; outline what you are going to will do to continue learning.
Higher Level Question Stems from Bloom’s Taxonomy by Professor Julie Hall
Can you create new and unusual uses for____?
Can you design a____to____?
Do you agree with____?
How would you decide about____?
What solutions would you suggest for____?
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