Reflective Writing #1

The Skillful Teacher by Stephen D. Brookfield

“…there will be very few standardized practices that help students across the board learn essential skills or knowledge. An approach that one student finds particularly useful or congenial may well be profoundly unsettling and confusing to the student sitting next to her.” (p. 17)



In the quoted sentences Brookfield is advocating that learners have different learning styles. Furthermore, he acknowledges orthodox instructions for a student to abide by to enable essential learning skills rarely exists. Therefore, an educator must understand that how one student may learn could vary compared to another student. However, if instructions are developed, and then followed by the students, the produced learning outcomes might be the same. The progression to how the students concluded the same outcomes, is the individual learner’s development and technique for learning.

According to the article written by Gaetano (2016);

“Adults have preconceived notions about education, learning styles and subject matter. They prefer to learn a certain way, even if it is not the most conducive to their individual needs. Unlike adults, children will try most new tasks and see them through, regardless of how well they do. To overcome this adult learning barrier, we need to appeal to many different learning styles and present information in a variety of ways.”




The reason why I felt compelled to reflect on the quote is because I can relate to having different learning needs to other learners. During various learning experiences, I have had that feeling, when I think to myself, why am I not understanding this? Maybe at times I might even think, why is the person next to me asking me so many questions and why don’t they understand it. I believe at some point we have all felt a little unsure or anxious about what we are learning. Maybe by now some of us have even figured out our learning styles, and can process the instructions to make sense. I, even at times have different learning styles depending on what I am learning. I take MMA – Mixed Martial Arts classes and learn different techniques during the MMA classes. The instructor demonstrates the technique, we then practice the technique and are given feedback during practice sessions. Whereas, during the PIDP courses, a demonstration, practice session, and feedback would not be adequate for me to become a confident Adult Educator.

Kolb explains;

“that different people naturally prefer a certain single different learning style. Various factors influence a person’s preferred style.  For example, social environment, educational experiences, or the basic cognitive structure of the individual.”



Kolb’s learning style model consists of four learning styles and a cycle of four stages of learning which is experiential learning, (McLeod, 2010). According to Kolb, effective learning transpires when progression has taken place through all four stages of the learning cycle. As a baseline Kolb’s experiential learning four stage cycle might be one of the few standardize practices to consider developing essential learning skills. Therefore, the adult educator would need to consider instructional strategies inclusive for the four stages of the learning cycle.

Four stage learning cycle – Kolb 1974


However, the four-stage learning cycle alone, would not be efficient. Kolb explains learners have different preferred styles; diverging, assimilating, converging and accommodating. Each learning style consists of two preferred styles. Various factors such as education, environment, basic cognitive are a basis for the learning style (McLeod, 2010). A combination of the learning styles and four stages of the learning cycle, can provide insight and create many options for the educator to develop strategies to be prepared for various learning styles. Having a wider perspective on the resources available, and being prepared provides the educator with confidence, and gives the learner assurance that their learning style needs are being met. Therefore, as an educator I should know my learner, what type of learner they are, and of the learning style that could be applied to the learner.

Learning Styles Kolb 1974




The interpretation applied;

I would need to know my learner – prior knowledge, who is the learner, why do the want to learn, what are the learning expectations. I would do this by knowing what am I teaching, who is it for, maybe reviewing past feedback forms, providing a pre-questionnaire.

I would then prepare various instructional strategies, evaluation and assessment tools for various learning styles – for example I could create group discussion for one part of the class and watch a video then reflect on the video.

I would clearly align the learning outcomes, validate the instructional strategies, use assessment tools to provide feedback.

Being prepared, professional, positive and proactive during a scenario in which the learner might having concerns and issues.

With the combination of the above and additionally; the more I am prepared, the more I know how to deal with all learners, the more I will be able to engage the learner and keep the learner motivated. Overall better outcomes for the learner and for me as the educator.




Brookfield, S. D. (2015). The Skillful Teacher. In S. D. Brookfield, The Skillful Teacher (pp. 1-26). San Fransico: Jossey-Bass.

Experiential Learning Theory of David Kolb . (n.d.). Retrieved from

Gaetano, K. (2016, August 30). adult-learning-needs. Retrieved from Learn Kit:

McLeod, S. (2010). learning-kolb. Retrieved from




Doubtful and Unconscious Bias

The Skillful Teacher – On Technique, Trust and Responsiveness in the Classroom by Stephen D. Brookfield

Chapter 1 – Experiencing Teaching


  1. 1.
    feeling uncertain about something.
    “he looked doubtful, but gave a nod”
    synonyms: irresolutehesitant, vacillating, dithering, wavering, in doubt, unsureuncertain, of two minds, shilly-shallying, undecided, in a quandary, in a dilemma, blowing hot and cold

    “I was doubtful about going

In Chapter 1 Brookfield describes his experience as Adult Educator in a College. He is brutally honest and willingly explains the feeling of being organized, planned and structured soon becomes a reality for unpredictable events. However, he further validates that those feelings are normal. Brookfield embraces the feelings, recognizes the doubts and works on adapting to embrace professionally the for-comings in Adult Education.

Chapter 2 – The Core Assumptions of Skillful Teaching

Unconscious Bias

“Implicit or unconscious bias happens by our brains making incredibly quick judgments and assessments of people and situations without us realizing. Our biases are influenced by our background, cultural environment and personal experiences”

According to Brookfield informed processes are a need to provide skillful teaching. The skill set is either learned, or maybe the educator can naturally adapt to the process. The later of the two is less probable, therefore Brookfield goes onto explain the four assumptions. In times of doubtful moments, decisions are made without realizing how you came up with the solution. It is in those moments where unconscious bias could occur. Therefore, conditioning the unconscioius mind to be aware of our reactions and  outcomes as adult educators can determine the consequences for a positive and ethical experience for the educator and adult learner.


Brookfield, S. D. (2015). The Skillful Teacher . In S. D. Brookfield, The Skillful Teache (pp. 1-26). San Fransico: Jossey-Bass. (n.d.). Retrieved from (n.d.). Retrieved from


Infographic on Job Finding Skills


Click on the picture to see the complete infographic on Job Finding Skills



Google Maps for Learning

Google Maps

I have only ever used Google Street View to look up places I have travelled to, or to show people where I used to live growing up.  I have also used it prior to a trip to explore the surroundings and vacation spot, and sometimes while I am on the trip I have used it as a map or guide.

You can Google Maps to teach geography , history , sociology, and also for discussions on culture, politics, human rights, environmental issues and more.

From the Google Maps website,listed here are ways to Google Maps for education purposes.


Google’s geo products give you and your students easy access to the world’s visual information. Once, maps were available only to royalty but now, you can explore Earth, Moon, Mars, and even dive into the depths of the oceans. The possibilities of using Google Maps, Earth and Street View are as endless as your imagination. We encourage you to explore, create, and collaborate.

Google Maps

With Google Maps, you and your students can become arm-chair explorers and cartographers with ease. Google Maps are a fun and visual way to help students understand geography concepts, map reading, location, and distance measurement. Besides using Google Maps to teach the fundamentals of mapping, like latitude and longitude, you can inspire students to investigate the world and to think spatially. You can use Google Maps with your students to:

  • Create collaborative maps
  • Create a campus or school district map
  • Create a family heritage map
  • Get walking directions
  • Plan a trip using public transportation
  • Get biking directions
  • Add or edit places on maps for your community
  • Compare neighborhoods and communities across the world
  • Understand traffic patterns
  • Use maps as writing inspiration

Google Earth

Google Earth offers a variety of ways to interact with and explore the world, ocean, and beyond. Here are just a few ideas for your classroom:


  • Use Historical Imagery to travel back in time and view your neighborhood, home town, and other familiar places to see how they have changed
  • Learn more about the US Presidents, their birthplaces, and the progression of states that voted during elections
  • View the many historical maps from the David Rumsey Map collection, like the Lewis and Clark trail map from 1814


  • Explore the Earth’s many biomes and habitats on all of the continents
  • Explore the rich resources from the Science Education Resource Center (SERC) to help facilitate better understanding of the Earth’s many systems
  • Explore the under water terrain, visit sea vents, and learn about the health of the ocean

Space Science

  • Using Mars in Google Earth, view images downloaded by NASA just hours ago, in the Live from Mars layer.
  • Take an interactive tour of Mars, narrated by Public Radio’s Ira Flatow or Bill Nye the Science Guy
  • View 3D rover models and follow their tracks to see high-resolution 360-degree panoramas Search for famous Martian landmarks, such as the Face on Mars or Olympus Mons
  • Take tours of the landing sites on the Moon, narrated by Apollo astronauts


  • Utilize Real World Math and the variety of lesson plans that utilize Google Earth to teach a wide range of math concepts
  • Use the Ruler tool to calculate distances in various units of measurements
  • Find the angle of elevation for hiking trails or ski runs using trigonometric functions


  • Overlay topographic maps on to Google Earth to compare and contrast different types of geographic representations
  • Challenge students to make their own real-world decisions using Juicy Geography lessons for Google Earth
  • Practice differentiating between physical and cultural landscape features of the world’s largest cities

Google Street View

Google Street View enables you and your students to explore many of the world’s treasures up close without leaving the classroom. The Google Cultural Institute brings together millions of artifacts from multiple partners, with the stories that bring them to life, in a virtual museum.

Sign Up

There is no need to sign up,  just go to google maps.


  • Prepare how you will be using google map for learning
  • Make sure you have an internet connection
  • Learn how to navigate the maps
  • Let the learner explore and learn
  • Know landmarks and addresses of places you plan to look up

Retrieved from

How would you use Google Maps? Leave your comments below.

Twitter for Learning


Twitter is an online social media networking application, as well as a social media site for news. It can be used to post and read news that is  in the media or it can be a personal news posts. A Twitter post is called a tweet. If you sign up you can read and post tweets, if you don’t then you can only read tweets. Each tweet must only consist of 140 characters. You can add friends, family, colleagues, peers, celebrities, athletes, companies, politicians, instructors and other influential tweeters. Most TV news channels also regularly tweet, to communicate the news to subscribers immediately.

For education purposes, Twitter is recommend for educators for to use to communicate to the learner outside of the classroom. This is considered a technology tool to be used to increase social proximity. According to the one of proximity principles “Second, the more people come into contact with one another, the more likely the interaction will cultivate a relationship”, (National Education Association, 2015). Further Chris O’Neal and instructional technology coordinator goes on to say “Twitter is a great way to keep your students thinking after class,” and  “You can tweet a quick provocative question about a social studies lesson, for example, that will keep their brains active.”

Listed are few ways tweeting can be used to help the learner and educator;

  • Announcements
  • Sharing a link to the syllabus
  • Sending a question relating to the topic to prepare the student for class
  • Mentor or coaching a learner
  • Facilitating discussions
  • Creating a community or collaboration of learners
  • Can share information from the web – most websites have a Twitter icon that connect you to share the information.


Signing up with Twitter

To create an account on the web:

  1. Go to and find the sign up box, or go directly to
  2. Enter your full name, phone number, and a password.
  3. Click Sign up for Twitter.
  4. In order to verify your phone number, we will send you an SMS text message with a code. Enter the verification code in the box provided. Learn more about having a phone number associated with your account here.
  5. Once you’ve clicked Sign up for Twitter, you can select a username (usernames are unique identifiers on Twitter) — type your own or choose one we’ve suggested. We’ll tell you if the username you want is available.
  6. Double-check your name, phone number, password, and username.
  7. Click Create my account. You may be asked to complete a Captcha to let us know that you’re human. Retrieved from


  • Pick a username that you are ok with to tweet .
  • Remember tweeting is short and brief.
  • Make you profile private if you want to keep your tweets private.
  • For education purposes keep the tweets professional.
  • For education purposes set a schedule, when you are open and closed for tweets.
  • Remember  not to tweet one student an announcement. It will be shared immediately.
  • For education purposes keep your tweets to a limit.

How would you use Twitter for education?  Leave your comments below.

References (2017). Retrieved from Retrieved from
National Education Association. (2015). Can Tweeting Help Your Teaching? National Education Association.

Dr. Jose Bowen’s Presentation at WilmU

Interested in learning about technology and how it can improve learning in and outside the classroom?

Here is an engaging hour plus presentation by Dr. Jose Bowen  at Wilmington University.

Teaching Naked: How moving technology out of the classroom improves learning Part 1 of 2 – Jose Bowen

Click to watch

Retrieved from


WhatsApp for Learning

thWhatsApp is a social chat messenger application.It can be downloaded on most phones, and other devices. It can be used on Wi-Fi or on your phone data to connect. There  other features like free phone calls, group chats, broadcasting messages, sending files, video sharing as well as photo sharing too.


WhatsApp isn’t only for social networking it can also be used for learning – by sharing files, broadcasting messages, asking questions, or having discussion, creating groups and more.

User Guide: Getting Started

Before you download and install WhatsApp, make sure WhatsApp supports your phone type. Please check this here.

To download WhatsApp, visit this link on your phone. Once installed, ensure that the friends who you wish to message have WhatsApp installed on their phones. If they do not show up under the Favorites screen (Contacts tab on Android), carefully add their numbers to your phone contacts:

  1. Enter the number the same as you would if you were to make a phone call to that person. Double check to make sure you entered the number correctly.
  2. If this is an international phone number, do not use any exit codes or leading 0s. Start all international phone numbers with a + sign, followed by the country code. For specific examples and instructions, see this article.
  3. Open WhatsApp and refresh your Favorites list (Contacts tab on Android).

Retrieved from


  • Only add people you want to talk
  • When creating a group make sure everyone in the group is ok with their phone number being shared
  • Only have it connected to your Wi-Fi for data and not your phone data
  • Keep groups organized
  • Change to show or not show date stamp when you were online last, setting default is everyone can see when you were online last.
  • Leave groups you chose not to talk in anymore.

Would you use WhatsApp for learning and how?

Leave your comments below.


/en/general/21073018. (2016). Retrieved from

Toscany Academy. (2016). how-to-whatsapp-chat-messenger-for-education-and-learning-purposes. Retrieved from