Monday, July 28, 2008

Out with the Old and In with the New--Revised Bloom

When I was in school, Bloom's Taxonomy was drilled into our heads. We had to show the use of the whole taxonomy in our objectives. With the implementation of the "Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships" framework in my school (and state) we brought out the Bloom and rated our lessons to the thinking skills required. Same old Bloom!

Imagine my surprise when I learned in a magazine from Tech4Learning last summer, that the Taxonomy had a facelift! I was please when I learned that the update had been orchestrated by one of the original framers!

The NEW Taxonomy Organized from Lower to Higher Order Thinking Skills-

Remembering - Recognizing, listing, describing, identifying, retrieving, naming, locating, finding
Understanding - Interpreting, summarizing, inferring, paraphrasing, classifying, comparing,
explaining, exemplifying
Applying - Implementing, carrying out, using, executing
Analyzing - Comparing, organising, deconstructing, Attributing, outlining, finding, structuring, integrating
Evaluating - Checking, hypothesizing, critiquing, Experimenting, judging, testing, Detecting,
Creating - designing, constructing, planning, producing, inventing, devising, making

My question is, are there now two different versions of an excellent resource to ignore. Think back to the classrooms that you sat in as a student, then look at the classrooms around you....what is the difference? Sure, there is a lot more stuff in classrooms, but how has instruction fundamentally changed because of the new stuff? Typically, when I ask my college students this question, they say there is no difference between the classes they observe and the classes they attended as students.

The reason I fell in love with using technology was because of the power it had in my classroom. First, because technology was motivating. I used to jokingly say that kids would sell their mom to be able to do something on a computer (sorry, mom). Twenty years later, it is still the case. How can we have school buildings full of computers and still have kids hungering to use them? I believe it is because they want to do REAL things with the technology. They want to learn, collaborate and, ultimately, create.

Last year's revised ISTE student standards: uses Creativity and Innovation as standard one.
"Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology." In the June 2008 edition of "District Administration", Peter H. Reynolds said, "If the ISTE's creativity and innovation standards are embraced and supported, we'll see some fantastic things happen in teaching and learning."

We need a revolution and I think looking at the revised Bloom, ISTE's Student NETS and listening to visionaries like Peter H. Reynolds we know that CREATING is a very powerful and important part of learning. WE must embark on a new era of change. We must start in our own classrooms. WE must share the new Bloom, the works of great thinkers, and the standards that have been created. We all must look at our own practice and share the excellent products that our students create.

Andrew Churches has an article on the correlation between Bloom and Technology here

Comparing the two versions of Bloom, here.

Anderson, L.W., and D. Krathwohl (Eds.) (2001). A Taxonomy for Learning, Teaching and Assessing: a Revision of Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives. Longman, New York.

1 comment:

Jesse P Luna said...

I think the taxonomy is missing the last step, Teaching. That is the best way to master a skill.

But how far down the taxonomy are we going now? And how can technology help us? I think it goes back to teaching basics and using technology as a tool and not as the centerpiece. The student's learning is the focus.

Use the tool, don't let the tools use us, should be our mantra and it sounds like you are doing just that.