From: Eugene Matusov
Submit: Post Field Note
Date: 06 Oct 1996
Remote Name: pax-ca24-15.ix.netcom.com
Your ovservation added to Jakob's one that A's "can't" seemed to be consistent accross the different play contexts. I also noticed that you reflected on your uncomfort to provide too much guidance to A. It is also interesting way of help by suggesting A to go to easier task and thus to get more confidence in her self.
Eugene PS Dave, please, keep beginning of the subject window as it is because it helps to undersatnd right from the content that it's your fieldnote (and not just a discussion message) and it's draft#1. Also try to reflect on your fieldnote to extract guiding keywords so later it's easy to find your fieldnote for you and other people. If I were you I'd put the following keywords:
can't, enough guidance, encouragement
Like I suggeste to Jakob -- real A.C. name can be really handy for other students' future observations.
You wrote, "I spent some time with A.C., the young girl Jacob also wrote about. I found it interersting how she often said "I can't" and threw up her arms in distaste. It was very cute. This happened while we trying to assemble a house using these new-fangled building tiles."
Who were "we" (i.e., the participants in the activity)and to whom specifically A said "I can't"? What was a specific situation of "I can't" for A did she try to make some action or somebody asked her something?
"They were very difficult to piece together, and I found myself wanting for some good ol' Legos."
Why did you want Legos -- because they are easy for A or they would be easy for you to help A?
"We weren't making much progress because she couldn't get any tiles together without me helping her more than I felt comfortable with. I didn't want her to get frustrated, so I suggested she check out the "Lion King" game she had noticed earlier playing on a computer. ""
I'd like to know if A was frustrated because both YOU and SHE didn't have much progress, or because SHE didn't get much progress, or because YOU refused to build something 'for her'? Whose was the ownership of the activity?
I think that it is interesting to consider both HER and YOU in the last episode that you described. It is interesting to analize your hestance to do things "for her." I guess there is hidden assumption that kids supposed to do things by themselves. Do you agree with that? Do you feel that evidence in learning can be seen ONLY when a person do more things by him/herself?
Dave, I'd include the two last sentences of your inquiry form here, "But not all of the activities will be appropriate for the entire range of children's ages we will be dealing with. It might be useful to play the computer games a little to get an idea of the difficultly involved." Because you seem to start discussing what consitutes appropriate learning environment for students. I think this is a great question! The question itself can go to the inquiry form (as another your inquiruy), although.
I like your inquiry, "I realize that it is important to provide support and encouragement for any child who is trying something new." However, it would be better if you write it in a form of question. Try to express what was problematic for you in your observation?
My guess that it was considering supportive, engouraging environment. Am I right?