Student Learning

Where Literacy Meets Geography: Using Talk Moves to Engage Students in Geographical Data

"From a perspective of social constructivism, literacy is shaped by social practices (Moje, 1996) and serves the purpose of knowledge construction in a discipline (Moje, 2008). To help students become “geographically literate” (Dolan, 2019) entails equipping them with skills to make sense of and critique geographical data presented in multimodal formats (Roberts, 2014) by creating more space for geographical dialogue in the classroom. This paper first discusses the relationship between talk and students’ ability to analyse and account for geographical data. Using the evidence of a questionnaire survey, it examines the impact of Talk Moves in supporting dialogic teaching in 3 Singapore’s secondary geography classrooms. Statistics show that Talk Moves helped students improve their analytical skills for geographical data and their ability to articulate answers in a geographical manner. However, more support could be provided to enhance students’ classroom participation and their writing based on geographical data."

Guiding Students in Writing Data Response Answers Using Bloom’s Taxonomy for Critical Thinking

"This study focuses on improving students’ ability to respond to data response questions with two or more variables - in particular, students’ ability to describe and compare the data given in data response questions. Based on Bloom’s Taxonomy, a step-by-step guide was crafted on how to approach these type of questions. The methodology used was quantitative data derived from pre- and post-tests, and a qualitative analysis of the post-test scripts. For this research, we picked Secondary 5 Normal (Academic) students who showed difficulty in coping with data response questions that have two or more variables. We found that the guide was useful in scaffolding writing answers for the students. However, while students were able to apply the lower stages of the guide, they were not able to spiral their critical thinking skills to higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy."

Using an International Videoconference in Problem-Based Inquiry Projects: The Role of Public Voice, Audience, and Positionality

"This article discusses and reflects upon a problem-based inquiry project that culminated in an international videoconference between multiethnic and multi-faith secondary students from Macedonia and the United States. The videoconference provided an opportunity for students to share their action plans, which proposed methods of addressing local problems or issues students had identified through their inquiry. This article focuses on three ways students engaged with the project and videoconference: inquiry, audience, and public voice. These aspects of the project illustrate how the students’ positionality on their chosen problem/issue shifted as they developed skills and knowledge through their inquiry. The article concludes with a discussion of implications for future problem-based inquiry projects in secondary schools."

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An Inspiring Quote

"[Open-mindedness] includes an active desire to listen to more sides than one; to give heed to facts from whatever source they come; to give full attention to alternative possibilities; to recognize the possibility of error even in the beliefs that are dearest to us."

~ John Dewey, How We Think

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