Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Happy October

I can't believe it is already October. So that means that one month of school has already gone by. I know I said I was going to post more often, but for some reason, the days fly by and it doesn't happen. Here's the update for the month:
My classes are great! Here is what I am learning:

Qualitative Inquiry - We have been talking a lot about how to complete studies that look at more information than just numbers - it really looks at the stories that people have to tell and how that can help us better understand whatever it is we are studying. We are also trying to understand how to better tell the stories we are interested in telling in order to help others as they read the stories we tell.

Learning Theory - We have mostly focused our efforts on studying Behaviorism (mice going through mazes, or Shamu doing a trick and going back for another fish to eat0 and now we have moved into cognitivism (our brain functions like a computer a little bit in that we have short term memory, long term memory, etc.). I decided that these theories are okay, but human agency is often overlooked in the arguments for and against both of these movements. As I looked at the history of both of these theories, I was surprised how linguistics was one of the driving forces in moving from behavioral learning theories to cognitive learning theories.

Project - I am working really hard on the re-design of the class I am teaching. I am working with a professor up in the Teacher Education department and we have been able to come up with some really exciting things. This week the students are on Week 5 and we only have five more lessons to go! I feel like overall, it is going really well.

Fun things - I went up to Salt Lake last weekend for a Utah Association for Bilingual Education conference and I was happy to see the principles that we are teaching our students are really important issues in the field of education, so it validated a lot of the things I have been teaching this semester. I was really glad also to be able to watch the General Relief Society meeting and to hear President Uchtdorf talk about creativity and how important it is in our lives.
Right now, things are really busy, but I feel like they are going well. I have been going with the missionaries to teach a lady called Lilian. On Monday, we had a really powerful discussion with her. I feel like she is almost ready for baptism. She has several questions about the Church, so I am glad we have been able to answer them. We also taught her about the glossary in the back of the Spanish Book of Mormon and how she can use that to enhance her study. I think it has helped her a lot. My Sunbeams are really cute. I have one that just moved in and is new. She is so adorable because she has the cutest red hair and a sweet smile. We also had a our Primary Sacrament Meeting last Sunday and the kids did such a good job. It made me happy. I love the music of primary and the lessons that are being taught to these really small children because they are powerful lessons.

I am excited to watch General Conference and to hear the words of our church leaders as they give us the scoop for the next six months!