Thursday, January 5, 2012

Jerrid Kruse, MagisterGreen, and Barry Garelick on Why open-ended projects aren’t so open after all

http://oilf.blogspot.com/2011/12/why-open-ended-projects-arent-so-open.html)

Jerrid Kruse said...

You are setting up a strawman here. "open ended" does not me "without constraint". Furthermore, being told exactly what to do & structure are different ends of a spectrum. Most advocates of open ended assignments are working against the assignments that provide so much detail that all decisions are made for students. Constraints are important, but your argument gives teachers an excuse to do all the thinking for their students.


MagisterGreen said...

People mistakenly equate the words "creative" with "new and original". Providing students with guidelines and restrictions is not equivalent to making decisions for them or doing any, much less all, of the thinking for them. This inability, or unwillingness, to unyoke the idea behind "creative" from the idea of "new and original" is responsible for a great deal of the garbage foisted upon students as "projects".

“Art consists of limitation. The most beautiful part of every picture is the frame.” - G. K. Chesterton


Barry Garelick said...

"Constraints are important, but your argument gives teachers an excuse to do all the thinking for their students."

If the students have the tools with which to do the thinking, that's one thing. But often such assignments are given before students are proficient at organizing and analyzing information.

We definitely should give students problems for which they have not seen the “worked example”. But there is some amount of scaffolding and preparation to get students to that step. The ed school approach is to skip a lot of the scaffolding in the belief that students will learn the information, procedural, organizational and analytical tools they need in order to solve the problem in a “just in time” sort of way.

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