Tabitha Naisiko's Discourse with Health Eating Design Representations.

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Tabitha Naisiko
5 May 2018

"Healthy Eating" as a 4 Ts model

I find the representation of the 4Ts model most appropriate to all the participants in the exercise, i.e. to the learners, practitioners and teachers. Based on the ‘The “Healthy Eating” scenario’ (four pages) in Learning design Rashomon I: supporting the design of one lesson through different approaches (Persico et al., 2013), the goal of the  exercise take students into a guided inquiry on health eating as regards nutritional values and eating habits. This was to be achieved through the objectives of:

  1. raise their awareness of the importance of healthy eating;
  2. construct factual knowledge on healthy eating;
  3. develop capacity to make healthy eating choices;
  4. develop an understanding of scientific inquiry.

To realize the above objectives,  I find the 4Ts model of Task, Teams, Technology and Time very appropriate representation because it is: a) responsibility giving through the task, thus can make learners feel a responsibility about the situation and its outcome, b) through teams, teaches members to work together as a group or team. It teaches collective responsibility which is the way forward for the world today, c) through technology, learner acquire responsible use of tools to execute tasks and in a given d) time specific period. Precisely, this 4Ts model enables an authentic learning that is not only limited to cognitive acquisition but also participatory through physical and emotional learning.  The other strong point in this representation is that it reveals that as regards knowledge generation, the teacher, the student and the practitioners ought to participate in order to get contexualised information that can result into positive effects. I also have an impression, this model is ideal to young learners and if it adopted to developing countries as a pedagogy, it would make wonders in transforming lives and building the economies.

As regards the article on: http://www.ld-grid.org/resources/learning-designs/pi-project-healthy-eating-activity/-healthy-eating-in-the-4-ts-model, I can acknowledge that the authors were procedural illustrative, expressional and used simple language to communicate a complicated process. In this way, the model can easily be replicated in other exercises because it is easy to follow but also convincing that it gave authentic and reflective results that went beyond knowledge or passing exams but changed lifestyle. Finally, the authors are also prudent to acknowledge the limitations of the model, thus opening room for further designs to be invented. It is open ended.

Based on the original exercise, this 4Ts models through participation enables the teacher to assess the understanding, learning outcomes of this design, also evaluate the content, language and mode delivery. This is what we refer to as grounded theory where practice opens for more appropriate designs.

"Healthy Eating" in an e-Design Template

 Back to the original activity, article and the objectives of the exercise, I also find the E-design template another appropriate model. It is almost like the 4Ts model in advantages and benefits. In this way, though it is like in the 4Ts model, that it generates knowledge as well, the unique aspect is that it is heterogenous, it allows diversity approach and content on the same design. The other difference is that this model seems designed for adult learners. One should be a self-motivated and regulating learner to benefit from it. It is ideal for lifelong education and post-graduate studies. The challenge is also has is that it assumes the learners are mature, thus may not need observations on how they are developing physically and emotionally. The design does not give room to evaluate these aspects, or sent check list for further support and mentoring.

About the readability, expressiveness and unity, it is straight forward, so can also be easily replicated. However, to a person like me who lacks skills on design the system on which (VLE) operates, it can be limiting on the side the teacher even though he/she has content. The teacher ought to be conversant with both designer and user interfaces to be able to operate authentically.

 

In connection to my proposed design in activity 1b

As regards my design in 1b with a titled: Title Social Media as a Medium of Paradigm Shift in Education in Uganda, the 4Ts model as well as the E-design template model would be adequate in expressing my design. I say would be because my proposed design is just a potential that was suggested based on the behavioral trends of the would-be learners. The two models would be ideal because the urge to use social media is not limited to age or geographical scope or profession. Social media is the fashionable way to deliver messages and receive messages, thus would be ideal if used to design VLE as a technology enhanced learning tool. Besides even in simple ways, use of internet on smart phones and tablet has sparked off an educational revolution where learns now do not show much interest in solely traditional approaches. The rhythm now is “airtel internet is your friend”. To me, this is an ideal platform for educationalists to explore and use to enhance education. However, as observed above, the 4Ts model would be ideal for young learner in primary to undergraduates, while the E-Design template for adult learner who are self-directed.

 

The benefits of using these representational designs in my design are that: a) they are empowering to the learners b) generate know and contextual knowledge unlike the obsolete information was are pumping the students, c) they enable the teacher opportunity to assess the cognitive, physical and emotional development of the students especially the 4Ts model, d)They are also participatory thus can develop team work and result into authentic activities e)They are empowering and can give learner useful knowledge to work with even if he/she drops out of school, can live sustainably because he/she is conversant with the environment, f) in the short run they are expensive and unaffordable but with government/political will, if well invested in, it makes education cheaper, accessible and affordable to all, and g) it is the way to go. We have no choice other than embracing the educational revolution through technology enhanced learning.

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