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Abstract Title: When Everyday and Scientific Concepts Grow Into One Another: Syncretic and Connected Learning
Abstract: As schools become increasingly irrelevant to meaningful learning for young people, they also fail in fulfilling their social equalizing agenda. There is a growing disconnect between the interests and everyday practices of our nation's students and formal schooling's approaches to engaging them in rigorous, meaningful, and relevant learning. Of concern, there are social and cognitive, as well as personal, institutional, and economic consequences to disconnected learning. Today's students move across a range of contexts and produce artifacts that reflect the intercultural, hybrid, and multimodal practices of which they are part.  These repertoires developed across the ecologies of interest and everyday life should be cultivated as important dimensions to consequential learning. From a cultural historical learning perspective, transformative learning involves shifts between and across new combinations of contexts and tools that can be leveraged across ecologies and domains of learning (Engestrom, 2003; Gutierrez, 2008). Drawing on the best of what we know about how people learn, this paper focuses on how we can ratchet up learning across a range of ecologies by designing openings and forms of support that create opportunities for new learning pathways into the future. In particular, it focuses on the affordances of syncretic and connected learning approaches in supporting the development of toolkits that have utility across tasks, purposes, disciplinary boundaries, learning environments, and future-oriented trajectories and identities.
Abstract Type: Plenary

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Kris D. GutiƩrrez
University of Colorado at Boulder
249 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309
Phone: (303) 492-8450