Challenges with Measuring Learning through Digital Gameplay in K-12 Classrooms
Videogames have long been lauded for their potential to increase engagement and enhance learning when used in class- rooms. At the same time, how to best evaluate learning presents challenges, especially when the game does not have standardized assessments built-into it and when games are taken up in a wide variety of ways in quite diverse contexts. This article details the use of a geography game to support learning in 32 diverse classrooms in Ontario, Canada, alongside challenges with evaluating student learning using a game that did not have a built-in assessment system. In total, 795 stu- dents participated in the study. Classroom observations and interviews with teachers were triangulated with student pre and post evaluations. Results demonstrated that students did learn from gameplay, as demonstrated through multiple choice and short answer change scores in the pre to post evaluation, despite variations in duration of play and how the game was integrated in the classroom more generally.
Digital Game-Based Pedagogy: Exploring Teaching Strategies for Classroom Teachers in the use of Video Games in K-12 Classrooms
This paper summarizes the results of a study with 34 teachers in a province in Canada that examined how teachers can be best supported in the use of video games in K-12 classrooms through professional development. The study demonstrated that teachers receive little to no pedagogical training on the unique game-based pedagogies that undergird digital game-based learning. To better support digital game-based learning, teachers require explicit training on these teaching strategies.
What Do We Really Know About the edTPA? Research, PACT, and Packaging a Local Teacher Performance Assessment for National Use
This article calls attention to the overreliance on research about the Performance Assessment for California Teachers (PACT)—often labeled edTPA’s predecessor— as justification for the edTPA. The article argues that the distinctions between the assessments are too vast to rely on PACT data to support the edTPA, given the localized nature of PACT and the way in which it is scored.
Poetic Ponderings of Being at Home/Not at Home: (Em)bodiment in the Spaces In-Between
This poetic inquiry grapples with the notion of home—what it means to be at home in all of its de/generative possibilities of dis/placement, be/longing, and be/coming. Home, as a place that one is from, is explored by way of the tensions in-between place and self, highlighted through a series of personal vignettes. In working through what it means to inhabit the space in-between, the author calls attention to the limits of language for representing the in-between within a text, detailing the constraints of the dash and ampersand and offering the slash as a possible means of representation.
Metaphorical Awakening: Curricular Reconceptualizations of Aesthetic Experience
This article details the author’s efforts to become wide-awake while engaging with art during a semester in Maxine Greene’s course on an aesthetic experience. Juxtaposing narrative accounts with a close reading of Releasing the Imagination (1995), the author sketches the visual metaphors that appear throughout Greene’s work,and ultimately troubles Greene’s conception of wide-awakeness by questioning the privileging of the visual modality. The paper concludes with questions about how we might re/lease imag/in/ation in the spirit of the work of Ted Aoki, to dwell in the spaces in between awakeness and slumber
Knowing and/or experiencing: a critical examination of the reflective models of John Dewey and Donald Schön
In this paper, I take issue with the overuse of reflective practice in teacher education, arguing that the term ‘reflection’ is often utilized without a compre- hensive understanding of its quite diverse parentage. In efforts to clarify the term, I trace the ideological lineage of reflective practice in education, detailing the rationalist-technicist model offered in the work of John Dewey and the experiential-intuitive model as it appears in the work of Donald Schön, highlighting the key differences in their respective approaches to reflection through critique. I demonstrate that both models bifurcate knowledge and experience, privileging the former at the expense of the latter. I conclude with a brief explo- ration of Van Manen’s tacit knowing and its potential for reflective practice in teacher education. Ultimately, this work cautions against an uncritical adoption of reflective models, stressing that in doing so, the very spirit of reflective practice can be undermined.
Learning How to Witness: Sex Scandal, Historical Trauma, and Literature of Historical Witness in Monsieur Lazhar
This paper explores the 2011 film Monsieur Lazhar and its meditations on bearing witness to someone else’s testimony. In the film, the protagonist Bachir Lazhar has replaced the students’ former teacher, who has just hanged herself in their classroom. As the narrative progresses, Lazhar carves a place both as a new teacher and Canadian—a “belonging” held tenuously as he fights for political refugee status, unbeknownst to the school. This paper uncovers examples of witnessing in the film that follow what Roger Simon describes through much of his writing; some scenes display characters bearing witness, requesting witness, and even failing to witness. The authors begin with the film’s scenes of sexual and historical trauma, identifying whose testimony receives deep witness and under what circumstances; they conclude by analyzing the texts that Lazhar himself reads in the film, as he navigates his own history through literature of historical witness.