Tuesday, June 18, 2013

On Procrastination, Driving and Dispositions

I am an expert at procrastination. If I don't want to do something I can find hundreds of perfectly reasonable-sounding excuses for not doing it.

I drive quite large distances as part of my job, and beautiful though the scenery  on the Coromandel Peninsula is, after a while my attention can begin to wander. So often I write blog posts in my head while I drive.  This one was partially composed on the road between Whangamata and Whitianga.

Now those who have checked my blog will now be wondering what happened to all those blog posts. To answer that I need to refer to Yoram Harpaz.  In his article ‘Approaches to teaching thinking: Towards a conceptual mapping of the field he talks about good thinking being a combination of Thinking Skills + Thinking Dispositions + Understanding of Knowledge.  

Now when it comes to blogging I have the requisite skills and understanding, I understand the concept of blogging, I know how to blog, I’ve blogged before. What I have lacked is the disposition to blog. Without that, my tendency to procrastinate wins the day and no blog gets written.

Which brings me to inquiry-based learning. In this video Sharon Friesen from the Galilleo Institute talks about Inquiry as a Disposition.

Inquiry as a disposition from EDtalks on Vimeo.

Sharon Friesen talks about inquiry being a disposition cultivated during teaching and learning, rather than a process that 'gets done' by students. She talks about successful inquiry leading to deep understanding, giving examples from her own experiences.

Inquiry isn't a process. While some sort of scaffolding of an inquiry can be very helpful and having a shared understanding around inquiry is essential, we shouldn't be focusing on the process and ignoring the heart of inquiry. We need to foster the disposition to inquire.
As Socrates put it: “Wisdom begins in wonder.

And hopefully I now have developed a disposition to blog and my posts will be a bit more frequent. Time will tell.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, Jan Marie! I too found driving to be a great time to blog in my head. I worked on using my ipod to vlog in the car. Upload to youtube and then you can reflect later as well!