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A word saving diagram!

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My last blog may have contained a hint of a moan about the word count in this TMA I am writing. This word count has been my nemesis for the last few days as I have edited and rephrased and contracted almost every sentence of this assessment! My overactive brain keeps thinking of things I should have included but hadn't so I keep writing new sentences and then having to steal words from previously written ones to make room for it! 

And then I made this diagram. I am hoping to both demonstrates my understanding of the key concepts we are being asked to discuss and also adds a little personal interpretation. (I am also hoping it doesn't reveal how massively I have misunderstood the whole thing!)

The acquisition metaphor is represented by a one way, downwards pointing arrow from teacher to learner. We are all familiar with this type of learning - it's where a teacher tells us stuff we are supposed to remember. We remember the stuff for papers and exams and (very occasionally!) real life. 

The participation metaphor is represented by a four way arrow between learner and learner, teacher and expert practitioner. This is because there is no one way we learn through the participation metaphor, but the flow of knowledge is also not one way. It flows in all directions.

The study group method - so enthusiastically espoused by John Seely Brown - is a two way arrow between learners. Learners work together to extend their own understanding and thus learners are both learners and teachers. The learning is organic and no linear but the opportunity to properly discuss and debate ensures that better understanding is reached. 

The authentic environment situated cognition learning theory is represented by a one way, though horizontal, arrow from expert practitioner to learner. In this learning type there is still an expert. Teaching may not look so hierarchal but the flow of knowledge and expertise is still one way. 

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The participation metaphor - at Wembley

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Edited by Anna Greathead, Sunday, 4 Mar 2018, 16:56

I am not a huge football fan. In fact - I'm not a football fan at all. But I am married to a huge football fan and am mother to two more huge football fans so I have not been able to escape fully from the daily, weekly, monthly, seasonal and annual ebb and flow of the fortunes of Tottenham Hotspur!

When young and newly married I went with my husband to a few live matches. I enjoyed them. There was an exhilarating atmosphere and there was usually the promise of beer and burgers at some point. However - I have not been to an actual match for over 20 years. I rarely watch football on television and I have perfected the glazed look just enough to prevent too much football talk being thrown in my direction. I can't block my ears to the shouts, chants, songs and cheers / groans though!

But yesterday they had tickets to see a match at Wembley (where Tottenham are playing this season whilst their new stadium is being built) and my brother and nephew had to drop out due to illness and snow. We had two spare tickets for one adult and one child so I got to go along! 

And whilst watching Spurs beat Huddersfield 2-0 I thought about the participation metaphor of learning! I knew the songs to sing. I knew who a lot of the players were. I knew most of the rules of the game. And crucially I had a couple of experts close by who answered my questions about some of the minutiae. Within an hour I had learned enough of the rules to convincingly join the community of 'Spurs Supporters'. (My bright red coat was problematic it seems... but it was freezing cold and my red coat is toasty warm!)

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