“When students begin to learn a subject, they should first memorize facts, then understand and apply these facts into a creative process.”

I completely agree with you. A good example of this is elementary math. Imagine how difficult later classes would have been if we never had to memorize our basic multiplication tables. Since we have memorized 6 x 6 = 36, we don’t have to waste time trying to figure out the area of a 6 by 6 square. Memorizing the basics makes life easier and probably facilitates the “creative process.”

]]>I read a book this semester, the Case for Constructivist Classrooms, and the authors describe two different ways to introduce the topic of photosynthesis. The first way is the traditional “here is the definition of photosynthesis; here is a diagram; memorize everything.” In the second approach, the teacher started by asking students to think about a process where raw materials are turned into a product (one example was creating art in art class). Students thought about a process that they could relate to. Later in the lesson, students learned that photosynthesis is a similar process and then started to fill in the specific details of photosynthesis.

I personally prefer this second method of starting general and then learning the specifics. But I would be interested to hear your thoughts!

]]>For design you have to have a list or group of precedent examples and ideas that ground your place in the discipline and your design work. For here the process of how you ought to design takes over. This process is what makes every design unique even though the examples might be the same.

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