Complex Learning

  1. 1.      If you believe that we can teach complex learning (e.g., analytical, creative thinking), HOW can it be done?  Be specific; your ideas must be doable.  If not, what are the“insurmountable obstacles”?


I believe we can teach critical thinking by provoking our students to go beyond just knowing facts and by engaging their higher order thinking skills. In addition, Blooms taxonomy has outlined how we or our students can develop critical thinking. According to him, we should teach our students to progress from knowledge acquisition, to comprehension, to application, to analysis, to evaluation and finally to creation of their original thoughts and concepts based on their deep processing experience.

By grouping students and providing them with real life problems to solve in class instead of just giving them the facts of certain topics, we are giving them opportunities to think creatively of possible solutions. They learn how to think for themselves and validate their learning as well.

For example, in biology subject, instead of directly presenting the usual body cells, tissues, to organs, to systems; the teacher may introduce a medical condition say, diabetes, and allow the student to share what it is that they know about the disease. The students will be given time to share everything that they know then the teacher can solicit the lesson and learning from the class in the process.

  1. 2.      Which theoretical approach/es best align/s with complex learning?  Conversely, which theoretical views tend to undermine high order thinking skills?  Elaborate.  What are the implications to curriculum development and classroom teaching?  In other words, what are the implications of specific theoretical perspectives on the way we design curriculum and plan/ implement teaching, or even in the way students learn?

I believe that constructivism approach is best aligned with complex thinking.  Creative thinking, critical thinking and analysis are skills needed when we are constructing schemes, concepts and principles.

On the other hand, I think information processing theory tend to undermine higher order thinking skills because of its nature which focuses more on encoding, retention and retrieval that basically gives emphasis to memorization more than critical and creative thinking.

The curriculum dictates the “what” and the “how” things should be taught in class.  I think that it has to be designed with the learner in mind because at the end of the day they are the recipients and beneficiaries of the learning process.  The theoretical perspectives serve as tools in approaching the uniqueness of the individual learner in class. 

  1. 3.      How do you imagine might learning theory affect the progress and development of a community or a nation?  As an individual with such awareness, what commitment/s, if any, can you make?


I believe that in the past learning had become synonymous with memorization. The western teachers fed our minds with foreign information which were not necessarily beneficial to us as a nation. Now, armed with learning theories, I believe that we can become free thinkers and model critical, analytical and creative thinking to our learners. I commit that I will be a catalyst for change by influencing learners to practice critical thinking in choosing and participating in activities that  contribute to self development and national progress.


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