Thursday, March 7, 2013

Chapter 9

How would you define successful mastery of your lesson objectives from a behavioral view of learning?


Anytime that I plan a lesson and have objectives, I expect that my students master them. Behaviorally, I would know if my students have mastered a lesson by any observable measure. This could include if they got a problem right or wrong, the body language they display as they are working or listening to my lesson, and the informal and formal testing I will do throughout my lesson. 

From a behavioral perspective, I could encourage mastery by providing a positive and comfortable environment in my classroom. Our textbook states: "behaviorism focuses on how environmental stimuli bring about changes in people behaviors" (285). I want my classroom to be a place where students feel comfortable to be themselves, push the boundaries, and are not scared to fail. I think developing a level of respect between students and teachers is essential in providing a classroom where students feel free to express themselves and learn and master topics. According to behaviorism, environmental influence is so important to the way that students behave. Anything that is observable in the environment are thought to influence environment. I could encourage this safe place by the classroom layout, the decoration I have around the classroom, the resources that I have provided my students, as well as the way that I conduct the class and treat my students and the way that the students treat each other. All of these observable environmental variables can influence if students successfully master learning objectives throughout the school year. 

Here is a classroom layout that I developed on a  on a classroom layout maker that I think  encourages learning and mastery of skills. 

P.S. This website is REALLY cool and its fun to think about how we would design our future classrooms :)    

Consider your CSEL intervention case study.  Are there tools from a behaviorist view for either encouraging productive behaviors or discouraging undesirable behaviors that you could apply to the case?  What are they? 

In my CSEL intervention case, a small group is not working well together. They often cannot master the skills and have a difficult time completing tasks in an acceptable manner. After observation, I have noticed that Lisa always seems to be cause.
She gets angry with others if she does not get the job she wants and refuses to do her part in contributing to the group’s learning.  She constantly interrupts others in her group and she does not pay attention when her group prepares for class presentations. 

To correct this, I would rely on punishing negative behaviors and reinforcing positive behavior. A reinforcer is a consequence of a response that increases the frequency of the behavior and a punishment is a consequence that decreases the frequency of a response. (pg. 292)

In this case, I would speak with Lisa's group and alert them that I have noticed their inability to complete assignments and their lack of working together properly. I would also talk to Lisa individually and let her know that I have noticed she has been acting up. I will tell Lisa if this behavior continues, there will be consequences. If it does continue, I will try punishing the undesirable behavior. If Lisa acts up again, I would have her sit out at recess for 5 minutes, which is something I know that she enjoys. I would be consistent in this punishment and the each time it happens add another minute to the time she has to sit out. 

Hopefully, this improves her behavior. If it does, I would begin reinforcing the good behavior. If she does not act out and works well in her group I will allow her to do something that she enjoys, like dropping her name in the classroom "good behavior" box that enters her to win a prize at the end of the week. 

Personally, I think that reinforcement and punishment is so effective and can really improve classroom behavior.

1 comment:

  1. Great answer, very detailed, yet simple to understand. I liked your explanation, and it helped me to understand the question better.