Incorporating Mediated Learning Experience in Geography Lessons, pp. 7 of 9

Firstly, the parameter of intentionality and reciprocity is an important principle which teachers could incorporate in their classrooms to shift away from the current practice of didactic teaching to facilitating a classroom environment that is highly interactive. This parameter also helps to ensure that continuous mediation takes place as students are required to respond to the teacher rather than being passive receipients of information (Chua, Tan, & Sock, 2017). Chua (2003) provided some examples which would demonstrate the parameter of intentionality and reciprocity in classrooms: 

  • The teacher is clear about his/her teaching objectives and intentions and makes them explicit to the class. The development of certain cognitive functions could be an example of a teaching objective which the teacher wishes to accomplish by the end of the lesson.
  •  Reciprocity occurs not only when teacher’s objectives and intentions are made clear to students, but also occurs when these teaching objectives become the students’ own learning objectives. For this to happen, sparking curiosity is critical in getting students interested in learning and creating in them a need to know such that students become personally engaged in wanting to learn what the teacher has to teach.
  •  Teacher may foster a highly interactive learning environment through:
    • Asking probing questions rather than “what” questions.
    • Creating a classroom climate that is safe for students to ask questions. This includes listening attentively to students’ questions and encouraging them after they have responded to questions, regardless of their answers.

Secondly, the affective domains of learning are engaged when the teacher mediates the parameter of meaning as it aids in fostering intrinsic motivation to learn. The following are some conditions provided by Chua (2003) which could be implemented by teachers in classrooms to mediate meaning with students:

  •  Explaining the significance and importance of the topic to students.
  •  Relating the topic to students such that it becomes relevant to them.
  •  Teaching the subject topic with enthusiasm and passion which mediates meaning to students on an emotional level.
  •  Aiding students to apply their knowledge to other subjects

Thirdly, mediation of transcendence refers to students developing strategies to solve issues beyond the current problem and making connections between things in the world. This enables students to gain a richer understanding of the world and cultivates a curiosity to know more about things and how they are interconnected (Skuy et al., 1996). According to Chua (2003), the teacher may possibly bring about transcendence in the classroom by:

  •  Making connections between the current issue and students’ prior knowledge.
  •  Enlarging the worldview of students beyond the current issue and helping them see the current issue in light of the “bigger picture”.
  •  Facilitating students’ understanding of how knowledge/learning of the current issue could be applied to other situations/subjects.

The last parameter is mediation of competence which is not a necessary parameter but is particularly useful in engaging students affectively and positively influencing their dispositions towards learning. Seng (1997) suggested the following ways in which teacher may seek to foster feelings of competence in classrooms:

  • Inculcating in students a positive belief in their capabilities.
  • Encouraging students when they have been observed to have tried and persevered in their learning.
  • Having realistically high expectations of students which convey the teacher’s confidence in the abilities of students.
  • Planning assignments that have difficulty levels which fall within the level of expertise of students such that success could be reasonably attained by them. 
  • Rewarding students with praise when they have achieved success in various aspects of their work.

Related Teaching Materials

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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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