Episode 47 - Educational Psychology - 16:1 - An Education Podcast Episode 47 - Educational Psychology - 16:1 - An Education Podcast

Episode 47 - Educational Psychology

November 11, 2021

Educational Philosophy & Psychology

Reminder! This is our last episode until December 9th. We’re taking a quick break so that we can enjoy Thanksgiving with our families. Also, we will not be releasing an episode on December 23rd!

Educational Psychology

This week’s episode delves deep into the field of educational psychology. Behaviorism, neuroscience, information processing– we’re serving as your guides as we walk through the textbook highlights. Katie learns about the family trees of President George Washington and Queen Elizabeth II, and Chelsea shares about having fun with Unity.

Psychology Discussion Net – Gestalt Theory of Learning (With Objections)

Wikipedia – Psychology of Learning

Wikipedia – Jean Piaget

Wikipedia – B. F. Skinner

Frontiers in Psychology – Why Educational Neuroscience Needs Educational and School Psychology to Effectively Translate Neuroscience to Educational Practice by Gabrielle Wilcox

Marian University Indianapolis – The Three Disciplines of Educational Neuroscience

The Social Cognitive Theory – Boston University School of Public Health – Wayne W. LaMorte, MD, PhD, MPH


INTRODUCTION:   [00:00:01] [music] [00:00:04] This is 16:1, a podcast about education, teaching, and learning. 

KATIE: Well, anyways, when she comes up, she’s literally standing there, and she’s sad and all this stuff. She waves a hand and becomes Katie Perry, so she, like, stands up straight. And her arms go out, and she smiles. It’s very eerie, because it’s like, this is what fame requires—

CHELSEA: [crosstalk 00:00:42] And then wave, and you become your alter ego?

KATIE: It’s just—and this is just Katie Perry. I mean, I do the same thing when I go teach—

CHELSEA: Uh-huh.

KATIE: —I suppose. But it was just so interesting to see someone have that moment—


KATIE: —we all have those moments. It’s, like, before you walk in a room; before you pick up the phone; before you, you know? Hers was literally, like, as you’re seeing me on the platform when I get up to the stage. And she was saying, I showed poor posture; she was, like, slumped. She kept stopping and, like, hem-hawing. And then, all of sudden, she just, like, stood up straight; put her hand on her hip and just smiled. And that was the cue—a little weird. I’ll show it to you; it’s, kind of, addressed in the scene.

CHELSEA: Is that a story of how we’re starting tonight’s podcast episode?

KATIE: I feel like I have to turn on my podcast voice.

CHELSEA: Turn on your podcast—

KATIE: I also, just, slept—

CHELSEA: —persona?

KATIE: —like, for two hours.


KATIE: So, my eyes aren’t quite adjusted [laugh], and my voice sounds like this.

CHELSEA: Yeah. So, we’re both a couple of days post-booster. And also, you got a flu shot, and we’re both, kind of, feeling gross. 

KATIE: And Ohio had its first freeze—


KATIE: —like, real freeze—

CHELSEA: The weather has turned on us—

KATIE: —and so, like—

CHELSEA: —it went straight from summer to winter, I think. 

KATIE: I mean, like, a week ago, it was, like, 70 degrees, 72 degrees.

CHELSEA: Yeah, it was a low of 28, today.

KATIE: And then this morning, I had to defrost my car—

CHELSEA: Yep, yep, yep, yep, yep.

KATIE: And the geese are flying away home—

CHELSEA: [laugh] They’re going down south.

KATIE: I’m going with—

CHELSEA: I hope the mics picked that up [laugh].

KATIE: —they might’ve; they’re kind of loud [laugh]—

CHELSEA: Honk, honk.

KATIE: —But, you know, it’s a bad combo—


KATIE: Like, I was okay from the booster; I was just, kind of , achey. Like, it wasn’t—I mean, I would’ve gone to work if I had to.

CHELSEA: Flu shot will knock you out, though.

KATIE: I think it’s just the combo; I really think it’s mostly the weather that’s hitting me right now—


KATIE: —because that’s a big dip right now. We’re in, like, the 20’s—


KATIE: —and the 30’s—


KATIE: —So, just, you know, going through it.

CHELSEA: Our bodies are, like, “Nooo— [laugh] 

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: —nooo.”

KATIE: Yeah [chuckle].

CHELSEA: Okay. So, quick reminder; top of the episode, we’re not going to be here next episode—that’s going to be Thanksgiving Break. We’re also not going to be here the week of Christmas—whatever that week is. We give ourselves off two episodes a year, and those two are coming up.

KATIE: Should’ve made it three.

CHELSEA: [sigh] Man, I could’ve—

KATIE: We might.

CHELSEA: —used another tonight.

KATIE: You might be finding out later; this is not an episode [laugh].

CHELSEA: [laugh]. Oh, anyway, let’s power through it.

KATIE: Yada, yada, yada—

CHELSEA: Yada, yada, yada—

KATIE: —what’s up [laugh].

CHELSEA: —what’s up?

KATIE: What are you doing? Are you good?

CHELSEA: Are you good? What are we talking about today?

KATIE: We are talking about [chuckle] the psychology of learning—

CHELSEA: Yes, a [crosstalk 00:03:14] of psychology.

KATIE: —a very light November subject.

CHELSEA: A light November subject [chuckle].

KATIE: We love when it’s bright and airy in the dead of November—

CHELSEA: Yep, just pull out the old—

KATIE: —there aren’t a lot of big words—

CHELSEA: —pull out the old psychology textbook.

KATIE: —There aren’t a lot of names that I might not be able to say.

CHELSEA: Ah, I think I mentioned John Dewey in here at some point.

KATIE: That’s mine. Dibbs.


KATIE: Anything shorter than—how many letters is Dewey—five? I’ll take five.

CHELSEA: Okay. There aren’t very many of them, but—

KATIE: He’s mine.

CHELSEA: —we’ll let you have him. 

KATIE: So, what is it?

CHELSEA: Yeah, so it’s the theoretical science that may be used as a behaviorist approach, or neuroscience, or social cognition— and we’ll talk about what all of those buzzwords are—but psychology, basically, too, teaches how we—I’m going to use words that are philosophically difficult, but how we get learning in our brains, minds—


CHELSEA: It’s hard, because [crosstalk 00:04:13] they’re not learning just—

KATIE: Get that learning in there.

CHELSEA: —how we get learning in us. There we go.

KATIE: That’s what we should’ve said today? “Can you get the learning in there, please?”

CHELSEA: “Can you get the learning in me?”

KATIE: [laugh] 

CHELSEA: So, I mean, it’s weird, because you know neuroscience would be, like, “Oh, this is about how the brain functions.” But, behaviorists might be more like, “This is how the mind interacts with its environment,” or something like that. So, everybody who has a take on this—and these kinds of problems go back to, you know—there’s philosophy having to do with this stuff all of the way, all the way back to the ancients. So—

KATIE: Way, way back. [chuckle]

CHELSEA: —way, way back [chuckle]. But we’re, kind of, just going to take an approach—take a stab at modern—the history of modern educational psychology. So, we’re not going into an entire history of all the thinking that got us where we’re now, but we’re, sort of , starting in, like, before the 1950’s. So, like, prewar or some stuff prewar, but mostly from the 1950’s on, when this stuff had started developing more as a field of its own.

KATIE: Hmm. Yeah, I would have expected this to happen a lot sooner as a field.

CHELSEA: Well, I think that psychology as such—

KATIE: Are there, like, parts of it that…?

CHELSEA: Yeah. Psychology, as such, is like a modern science is—in the grand scheme of human history—a relatively recent invention. There’s plenty of, like, philosophy and epistemology that happens, which is, like, theories of knowledge, and how we acquire knowledge, and where it comes from, and stuff like that. There’s plenty of that stuff out there, prior to this time, but yeah.

KATIE: We’re not that podcast.

CHELSEA: We’re [laugh], I mean, we probably will be at some point, but not right now, we’re not.

KATIE: Let’s take a little break on psychology in the dead of winter, just to, like—


KATIE: —when there’s more daylight than not, that’s when we’ll bring it back around—

CHELSEA: Okay, sounds good; sounds good.

KATIE: —deal?

CHELSEA: This will be the last show [laugh] about psychology—

KATIE: [laugh] I’m just kidding; I’m really just—

CHELSEA: —until the sunshine is upon us.

KATIE: I do things that sound a little interesting. I took—at least, one of my education classes was pretty and deeply rooted in this kind of stuff—



CHELSEA: —mine too. I think I had one—

KATIE: —as I’m reading it, it’s slowly coming back. But could I have taken better notes? Probably.

CHELSEA: Yeah. I think I also only ever had one class that primarily concerned itself with this stuff. I know that I couldn’t have—I was signed up for another—

KATIE: Wait. What was your masters in [laugh]?

CHELSEA: Well, philosophy and education. Philosophy and education, and not psychology. So, I did—

KATIE: I know. I didn’t say [laugh], like—you’re right, it’s not literally psychology, but it feels a lot like that.

CHELSEA: Well, the borders can get blurred, for sure, when it comes to thinkers working in this field. And I was signed up to take another psych class at Teachers College, but I thought the instructor was ‘looney tunes’. So, I dropped it the very first day.

KATIE: Are they, like, really well published?

CHELSEA: She was, like, a social-media person; she was very, very obsessed—

KATIE: Really?

CHELSEA: —with, like, her online presence and her image.

KATIE: Do you remember her name?

CHELSEA: And she was, like—she was, like, “You can’t take detailed notes; you can’t have recorders in my class,” because she didn’t want to be caught on record saying something dumb. And I was, like, “I don’t even care to record you, but this is a red flag. I’m leaving.”

KATIE: Do you remember her name?


KATIE: [sigh] I wanted to go look at her Twitter, yeah. She’s probably gotten fired since then [laugh].

CHELSEA: Well, she was, like, “I think…” I think one of her focus areas might have been sex education, which made her louder about things even—

KATIE: Than most.

CHELSEA: Yeah. I don’t know; I don’t know what her deal was—


CHELSEA: —but I got real bad vibes. So, then—

KATIE: —what a brand.

CHELSEA: —and I was, like, “You know what? I would’ve liked to have learned about this subject more. But I’m going to have to back on out of this class, because I will—

KATIE: You should’ve stayed—

CHELSEA: —lose my mind.”

KATIE: —You should’ve.

CHELSEA: Nope. Nope.

KATIE: You probably would’ve dropped out.

CHELSEA: She also was, like, “There are mandatory tests on this day only. You have to come even if you are on your deathbed, ill. Because I will not let you retake this test, ever, because,” blah, blah, blah. And I was, like, “You have problems.” 

KATIE: It’s, like, always got problems.

CHELSEA: And also, you’re teaching at Teachers College. You should know that this is not a healthy approach to learning. But anyway—

KATIE: Mm-hm. Isn’t that the greatest irony—

CHELSEA: Oh, some of the—

KATIE: —when the people teaching—

CHELSEA: —worst teaching I had was at Teachers College. I’m not going to lie.

KATIE: Oh, I just mean, when—yeah. Yeah, when people teaching you about teaching. And, like, huh [laugh]?

CHELSEA: Well, my favorite thing that happened there was that everybody would stand up there and tell you that sage-on-a-stage lecturing approaches, like, where, you know, there’s a person just standing in front of the room—yeah—is bad because it’s not really how people best retain knowledge, but they would tell you that via a lecture standing there in front of the room.



KATIE: Do as I say; not as I do.

CHELSEA: Yeah. It was great. Anyway—

KATIE: Sorry about that.

CHELSEA: —that’s enough of that rant. But—

KATIE: Just fascinated; that’s all.

CHELSEA: —basically, no, I think I only ever had one class, maybe, that touched on some of these models of learning and psychology—and, I think, actually, might have had to do with the, like, gifted education stuff—that class that I took—

KATIE: Those gifted kids, man.

CHELSEA: —because it was like trying to show from informed points of educational psychology. Your different approaches to—

KATIE: Sure.

CHELSEA: —that. So—

KATIE: Can I mention one last thing before we—


KATIE: —jump into the meat and potatoes of this? I need everyone who’s listening to know that right now, Chelsea is sitting in our office in a fox onesie, and it has—

CHELSEA: I’m not putting this in the podcast.

KATIE: —yes you are.


KATIE: Why? This is what’s adding to the humor of how serious this conversation is, is that the—

CHELSEA: It’s keeping me warm.

KATIE: —fact that on top of your head, is another head with floppy ears—

CHELSEA: It’s, like, salmon-colored fox.

KATIE: [laugh] So, as she telling me [laugh]—

CHELSEA: Gramzie got this for me. Our biggest podcast fan—

KATIE: That’s true, but—

CHELSEA: —for my birthday [crosstalk 00:09:33]

KATIE: —as she’s talking, it’s just, like, her and then also a fox [laugh].

CHELSEA: There’s a fox on my head.

KATIE: Okay. Prior to the 1950’s, much of the psychological learning theories had coalesced around geography more than anything. So, in Germany, there’s a strong focus on the Gestalt psychology… gestalt?—

CHELSEA: Gestalt—GESTALT [laugh] —

KATIE: —GESTALT. [laugh] Okay.

CHELSEA: Well, that’s how I’ve heard it said by philosophy people. So…

KATIE: Okay, well… Okay. So, in Germany, there is a strong focus on Gestalt psychology, which was a school of psychology that provided the foundation for the modern study of perception.

CHELSEA: Yeah, this is, kind of, a—you use, like, a grand [crosstalk 00:10:11] whole big—

KATIE: This is a [crosstalk 00:10:11]. Yes.

CHELSEA: Yeah, this is, like, a whole big theory, and it doesn’t just belong to educational psychology, it approaches a lot of different things. But we’re talking about it from this one angle. So, go ahead, please.

KATIE: So, this theory basically states that the whole of anything is greater than its parts—that’s lots of things about it, actually [laugh].

CHELSEA: You good?

KATIE: I feel like I’ve heard that so many times, but I never really thought about where it came from. So, that’s, kind of, interesting.

CHELSEA: I mean, it’s, kind of, like a quick—

KATIE: Yeah. So, basically—

CHELSEA: —distillation.

KATIE: —that is, “The attributes of the whole are not deducible from analysis of the parts in isolation. So, according to the view applied to educational psychology, learning is the organization, reorganization of behavior, which arises from the interaction of the maturing organism and its environment.”

CHELSEA: Yeah. That’s the crux over right there, is that it’s this approach to living things. In this case, you know, people who are learning, interacting with the environment. And that’s, kind of, like, where learning comes from.

KATIE: Huh, okay. So, in America, then a strong focus was on behaviorism, which focused—


KATIE: —on exploring observable psychological concepts. So, this explored learning mechanisms that could be tested on animals.

CHELSEA: Yeah, like big experimental psychology approach here.

KATIE: Just, like, rat stuff.

CHELSEA: Yeah. It also comes about, sort of, as a refutation, maybe a little bit of psychology that looks more into interiority and the inner mind and using, you know, first-person accounts to talk about psychology. This is, sort of, a little bit—

KATIE: Rather than—okay.

CHELSEA: —opposed to that approach, because it’s, like, “Well, no. If we’re going to be a hard science, we have to have—

KATIE: These things?

CHELSEA: —observable, repeatable—

KATIE: Sure.

CHELSEA: —phenomena. We got a—so, anyway—

KATIE: Oh, okay.

CHELSEA: —that’s what that’s about.

KATIE: Okay. So then, in Russia—which was at the time, the Soviet Union—they provided a cultural history approach towards psychology, which described learning in the context of one’s environment. So, this perspective viewed learning as a concept that can be directed and supported in institutions like schools.

CHELSEA: Yeah. So, not happening—

KATIE: This seems—yeah, [crosstalk 00:12:11].

CHELSEA: —not happening in isolation from—it’s basically, like, “Well, maybe we shouldn’t stick children in labs to observe how they—

KATIE: I’m on their side—

CHELSEA: [laugh] Yeah, yeah—

KATIE: —[laugh] it turns out.

CHELSEA: It’s that—

KATIE: That seems—

CHELSEA: —the social— 

KATIE: —that seems, kind of—

CHELSEA: —approach is significant.

KATIE: Okay. So then, outside of those, we have Piaget’s Constructivism, which described learning as a way learners can construct their knowledge by expanding and changing their ideas based on the information that they received—which I wish my students did today.

CHELSEA: Piaget is really interesting. It’s like a whole—he’s a whole big thing. He has a background in philosophy, and he’s got really interesting—he’s a big one, I think, and definitely one that we talked about in grad school, to some extent.

KATIE: Yeah, there’s definitely some val—actually Piaget could probably be a whole podcast episode, honestly.

CHELSEA: Yeah, I think, maybe, we should consider it—

KATIE: Probably not a bad idea.

CHELSEA: —if we could figure out how not to make it absolutely boring to everyone, then we should do that. Because it is very much—

KATIE: It is good stuff.

CHELSEA: —it’s good stuff; it’s very much in the weeds of—

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: —you know, psychology, education, all these [kinds of philosophy 00:13:11]. Sorry.

KATIE: And then the last couple, Freud’s work on psychoanalysis. And then Dewey’s theories on schooling and learning were also major contributors during this time.


KATIE: So, we have it by—when general location like Germany and America or the Soviet Union, then also, just on top, those three big ones.


KATIE: So, after World War II, two major schools of psych theory became very prominent. One was the rise of radical behaviorism, and that all came from the work of B.F. Skinner.

CHELSEA: Definitely read this guy in grad school—

KATIE: Yeah, I didn’t [cough] see, more of this—

CHELSEA: —or, at least, talked about him.

KATIE: —and this is coming to me very, very slowly, like I said. So, Skinner was a professor of psychology at Harvard. And so, his thought, basically, was that he believed that free will was an illusion—


KATIE: —that’s, kind of, okay. So, he saw you in action [00:13:56]—

CHELSEA: Are you mad about it [laugh]?

KATIE: I’m, kind of, going through it now, again. So—

CHELSEA: And we’re just—he’s casually dropping—

KATIE: I know—

CHELSEA: —into the pod—

KATIE: It’s, like—

CHELSEA: —that free will doesn’t exist.

KATIE: Right. So, Skinner saw human action as dependent on consequences of previous actions, a theory he would call the principle of reinforcement.

CHELSEA: Yeah. It’s like a causal chain. One thing causes another, causes another.

KATIE: Yeah. So, basically, if consequences to an action are bad, there’s a high chance the action will not be repeated. If the consequences are good, the probability of the action being repeated becomes stronger.


KATIE: That seems right in practice [laugh]—I can’t think of too many examples where that has been proven true [laugh] with my students—but Skinner viewed human behavior as, “Determined by the individual’s interactions with one’s environment.” He argued that humans are controlled by external factors such that human learning is predicated on the environmental information one receives from one’s surroundings. So, these humanistic qualities like identity, hope, love, all of those things, were neglected in his words.

CHELSEA: He’s, like, “Who cares about all that?”

KATIE: Yeah, and I think those are exactly the things that I’m seeing missing from students—

CHELSEA: I know.

KATIE: —who aren’t making those decisions.

CHELSEA: You talked exactly about that kind of thing. But this radical behaviorism approach is, like, “Nope. It’s just, like, input in; output out.” And it’s all deterministic, and you can’t escape it no matter what you do.

KATIE: I think, generally speaking, what he’s saying does make sense. But it has to have those factors, also.

CHELSEA: That we don’t have free will makes sense? Makes a lot of sense to you [chuckle]?

KATIE: No, but I think that there’s something to be said that there definitely are students who learn from the consequences, right?

CHELSEA: Oh, for sure.

KATIE: —to not repeat something. But that doesn’t come without, also, the knowledge that there is an identity involved—whatever happens at home, happens at home. But, yeah.

CHELSEA: This is like taking, like, the Pavlovian Experiment to an extreme and applying it to educational psychology.

KATIE: Yeah. Sure.

CHELSEA: I’m not exactly sure. Pavlov isn’t—I mention him in here somewhere. But it’s around the same time, you know, general time frame that Pavlov was doing experimentation [crosstalk .00:16:00].

KATIE: Well, what I was just about to say—we’re going to talk about him, and he’s one of my favorites—is that this completely misses all of what Maslow did.


KATIE: This is a theory completely opposite of Maslow’s idea, which is so fascinating. Because, I guess what I’m trying to say is, is that students won’t learn until they’re loved and cared for, And so, they will not learn from things until—you know what I mean?

CHELSEA: Yeah. I mean, it’s the next bullet point, if you want to save it, we’re talking about Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow.

KATIE: Yeah. So, these are the humanistic views of psychology. Haven’t we done a little bit more Maslow?

CHELSEA: He’s a bit more humanistic—what was that?

KATIE: We’ve done a whole episode on Maslow, right?

CHELSEA: Yes. We did— 

KATIE: The hierarchy? 

CHELSEA: an episode on the hierarchy.

KATIE: Okay. So, we have Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow. So, in 1951, Rogers introduced the concepts of client-based therapy and introduced related terms such as student-centered teacher and significant learning. Okay. Student-centered teacher was a big thing, right? Not that I’m thinking again [laugh]—

CHELSEA: I, like [crosstalk 00:16:52]. I was going through it—

KATIE: —as I read that, I was, like, uh [laugh].

CHELSEA: —like, so a lot of this is from the Wikipedia article on educational psychology, but I was trying, kind of, like, distill things down. But I was trying to definitely hit on all the ones that I know for sure are very popular in higher education circles when it comes to teacher training [crosstalk 00:17:08] and stuff like that.

KATIE: Yeah, student-centered teacher is—eww, I’m sure I can find an old essay about that.


KATIE: And then, as previously mentioned, Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is a model that influenced the psychology of learning, as well in what it basically suggests is that people have to meet their basic physical, social, mental needs before they can do any sort of higher-level learning, thinking, cognitive—like, all of that. So, you have to meet the baseline of what you need as a human in order to achieve further learning.

CHELSEA: So, it is a reaction against radical behaviorism—


CHELSEA: —it’s putting interiority back into the picture and saying, “Hey, if your mental state is such that you can’t get out of bed in the morning because you’re hungry, then you’re not going to learn.”

KATIE: If you’re hungry our sleepy; you’re cold; you have no clean water, like—

CHELSEA: Nobody loves you.

KATIE: Right, like, you have no one who serves as your alarm clock. You know what I mean, like, those types of things. I have to say, right now, I’m seeing that that’s, like, the number one indicator for most of our students when it comes to, like, who we’ve got our eyes on as far as concerns.

CHELSEA: —for dropping out and stuff like that.

KATIE: Just how they act at school; the decisions they make; stability is what they need, you know? So, Maslow’s just kicking butt forever and ever, I guess. So, anyways…

CHELSEA: So, evolving from that during the 1970’s, learning began to be viewed as an integral part of life and the world, which is a broad statement. But it’s, like, a little bit of the hippie-fication of educational psychology—that’s probably a rude way of saying it, but that’s just what I’m saying. I’m going with it.

KATIE: We’re getting hits with it [chuckle].

CHELSEA: [chuckle] Started to be seen as part of personal and social enrichment. So, we get concepts like life-long learning and adult education, classes for retirees at your community college, that kind of stuff focusing on learning as a system of osmosis between society and learners and schools and stuff like that. 

We also see learning start to be connected with liberation and emancipation, and again, this has a lot to do with the politics of the time. Scholars such as Charles Wright Mills and Paulo Freiri, they applied learning as a way to understand, and eventually reform the systemic power conditions that existed in society. So, this is some—yeah, there’s a lot of crossover between political movements at the time and this stuff [unintelligible 00:19:18]. Learning theory was brought in to include social context surrounding the learning process, which I think makes sense

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: So, other theories developed during the 1980’s and beyond. These might include experiential learning, modeled by David Kolb. Definitely read all kinds of stuff about experiential learning in grad school.

KATIE: That’s one of those phrases that just makes me hate it. Like, I understand that it—you know what I mean? [crosstalk 00:19:42]—-

CHELSEA: Well, this [crosstalk 00:19:42] buzzword into oblivion.

KATIE: —that’s what I mean, these buzzwords make me crazy, but I’m, like, “Okay, this checks out,”

CHELSEA: It’s an iterative process of experience, reflection, conceptualization, and experimentation.

KATIE: Yeah, exactly. I hate most of those words.

CHELSEA: It’s like a chart with arrows on it that go in a circle. I can just, like, picture that the page and the textbook from grad school.

KATIE: It’s like a Venn diagram and [crosstalk 00:19:58].

CHELSEA: The problem is that I think this stuff is pretty interesting. But the way that we learn about it makes it absolutely, ludicrously boring.

KATIE: Absolutely.

CHELSEA: [sigh] Sad to know. Anyway. Okay, next, we have Robert Kegan, who created constructive-developmental approach, expands upon Piaget’s Stages of Child Development into a life-long process, which includes adulthood. So, we were just talking about Piaget, but Piaget’s work, basically, held that intelligence develops in stages that are related to age. And they are progressive, because one stage has to be accomplished before the next can occur.


CHELSEA: So, it’s, like, I don’t know—

KATIE: Interesting.

CHELSEA: —it’s like you have to get to the end of the level before you could unlock the next one, basically, approach to [chuckle] educational psychology.

KATIE: It feels—okay.

CHELSEA: If you get the Easter egg, you can skip all the way to level 10.

KATIE: Right.

CHELSEA: No, that’s not really how it works. But…

KATIE: That’s, like, okay, all right. I’m not sure about that one [unintelligible 00:20:50].

CHELSEA: Mm-hm. So, you got to keep up with your earlier levels of mental abilities to reconstruct concepts. It’s a pretty weird—

KATIE: Yeah, I mean [laugh]—

CHELSEA: I mean, I think we have to, like, take all of this as somebody trying to find the language to describe very, very complex processes that happen in human minds and social contexts.

KATIE: As you—yes. As you develop.

CHELSEA: Right. And doing that, probably is going to involve some level of imprecision in your language about it.

KATIE: Yeah, I didn’t—I think that’s a good point. I also think that—

CHELSEA: I think that this is just what theoretical science and psychology and—like, being theoretical in any capacity, I think, just involves that by default. But, yeah.

KATIE: Sure. I mean, I’m not saying that I don’t believe that there are series of stages that you have to learn, right? Because it’s, like, things like object permanence. It’s, like, eventually [laugh] —

CHELSEA: Yeah. Yeah.

KATIE: —you know, but also, like, if you pull out this Lincoln Log, everything will fall. So, I understand, generally, what this is. But if you—

CHELSEA: Yeah, I can’t remember what Piaget says happens if you, basically, like, forget one of your stages [laugh] or something. I really can’t remember, but we should look that up and—

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: —see what he said about that, like—

KATIE: But it’s [crosstalk 00:21:53]—

CHELSEA: —you just evolve into a, like, slobbering toddler again, if you forget your alphabet for a day.

KATIE: Well, as someone who’s recently talking about retention issues [chuckle], I’m, like, “Well, maybe, they’re not so right [laugh] .”


KATIE: All right. So, in 1991, the American psychologist, Howard Gardner wrote, The Unschooled Mind, which focused on three different types of learning: intuitive, school learning, and expert learning. So, in intuitive is the most natural, and it occurs mostly in your preschool years—

CHELSEA: Oh, this is the object permanence [crosstalk 00:22:21].

KATIE: Yeah, this is talking about—it’s almost, like, [laugh] had a read the notes more closely, I would know what’s coming next. Okay.

CHELSEA: No, it’s fine. It’s fine.

KATIE: School learning, obviously, is what’s forced upon children during school years. And then the intuitive, expert learning is a type of learning that Gardner argues everyone should strive towards—

CHELSEA: Interesting. [laugh] 

KATIE: —which—yes, I, kind of, probably was still checking off some of those boxes.

CHELSEA: Yeah. I mean, so you can tell that a lot of these approaches to ed psych are in conversation with one another and share common histories, either in, you know, cognitive science, philosophy, whatever it may be. So, let’s just talk about, very broadly—outside the sort of history and how things evolve—let’s talk about just a couple of different approaches. Because even within the psychology of learning, there are—I don’t know if you want to call them schools of thought or just—I guess I want to say, like, disciplines, that people are more interested in.

KATIE: I think this one’s probably a good word for it.

CHELSEA: Yeah, they are sometimes in opposition to one another. Sometimes you do something, because you don’t agree with a particular approach or theory to education or experimental design, or whatever it is. But let’s just run thought some of these—

KATIE: Okay.

CHELSEA: —would you like to take the first one?

KATIE: Yeah. So, the first one is neuroscience, and it is a discipline that combines neuroscience, pedagogy, and psychology bringing the current research from how the brain learns, behaves, and relates to instructional practices in the classroom. So, every class assignment and experience shapes the human brain, right?


KATIE: So, understanding how the brain processes this information into learning and knowing more is, kind of, a focus here. And so, this helps us understand better what students’ brains—like, what a student’s brain needs to be engaged, responsive, alert. And then it helps teachers reevaluate the learning process, to say, “Okay, how does this—” you know what I mean? “—what is this information doing in their brain? How do they retain it? Do they retain it? Is this the best approach?”

CHELSEA: Right. So, yes. This is a bit of a new field. I mean, and by new, I mean, like, 1980’s, kind of, is what when—

KATIE: Are you saying we’re older?

CHELSEA: [sigh] I mean…

KATIE: [laugh] You sat a little too long on that. 

CHELSEA: [sigh]

KATIE: That was a pretty pregnant pause.

CHELSEA: It’s a new field relative to some of these other approaches and philosophies and whatnot because—

KATIE: In the scope of humans [laugh]…

CHELSEA: We just didn’t have the science.

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: I mean, and again, I think it gets a little difficult to sort out some of these concepts. And I think sometimes that neuroscience probably gets a little bit ahead of itself and puts the cart in front of the horse a little bit in terms of talking about—I don’t know. Like, even the question, “Is it really brains that learn? Do brains, like, the organs—the physical organs—learn? Or is it, like, a mind that learns?” These are the questions [laugh] that philosophers and psychologists argue about all day long. Anyway, it’s a bit of a new field. 

But there’s this increasing need for a presence of school psychologists. And that shows us a bit about how neuroscientific approaches to educational psychology make their way into schools—school psychologists end up being the bridge to, you know, between the science and classroom learning more than anything right now, I think—but yeah, still budding science finding its footing.

KATIE: Yeah, we could definitely use more school psychologists.

CHELSEA: Yeah, for sure.

KATIE: I’d say maybe one-to-one with students would be ideal. Just, like, everyone gets their own.

CHELSEA: [laugh]

KATIE: Just take your own psychologist. Let’s just…

CHELSEA: You just get assigned a psychologist on day one.

KATIE: Let’s just unpack it, you know?


KATIE: I’m not against it. You know, if we stop defunding education—

CHELSEA: Well, maybe we should do that.


CHELSEA: Next one.

KATIE: —another discipline?


KATIE: Behaviorism?

CHELSEA: Yes. We talked about this.


CHELSEA: This is Skinner and Pavlov.

KATIE: Behaviorism focuses on externally observable behaviors and the constituent parts of knowledge, as opposed to, like, an inward-looking approach or a thought. So, behaviorists believe that human beings are shaped entirely by their external environment. And so, if you alter that person’s environment, then you alter their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

CHELSEA: Yeah. This is more of the radical behaviorism approach. It says, like, “Who cares about what’s going on in your little brain pan; I don’t care about your minds or your thoughts. The only thing that determines educational outcomes is input-output from the environment.”

KATIE: Brain stuff.

CHELSEA: Brain stuff.

KATIE: So, in the classroom, though, these are approaches that reward students for good behavior and punish them for bad ones—I don’t know, it’s, kind of, archaic in some ways, I think, in the classroom.

CHELSEA: Yeah.—I mean, this is just one example—

KATIE: I mean, this is just one, and, kind of, proved me wrong, like, [chuckle] do we have to do these things? Yes, but it’s a lot more complex, I guess.

CHELSEA; Sure. It’s a, kind of, crude example of behaviorism to just say, like, “Oh, you did a good job; here’s your star,” whatever it is. But—

KATIE: “Here’s your cookie.”

CHELSEA: —there is, sometimes, something to be said for that approach—

KATIE: No, there is.

CHELSEA: —that works in some contexts. It maybe doesn’t work as well in other contexts.

KATIE: I mean, I think age is a factor; personality is factor—yeah, there’s a lot of moving parts there.


KATIE: Okay. So, next?

CHELSEA: Social cognitive theory. So, it’s SCT. “It describes the influence of individual experiences, the actions of others, and environmental factors on individual health behaviors. So, SCT provides opportunities for social support, you’re instilling expectations; self-efficacy, and using observational learning and other reinforcements to achieve behavior change.” This, honestly, just feels like being a teacher; I don’t know. It gets to be called—

KATIE: It really is.

CHELSEA: —a special thing, but it’s, like, social cognitive theory. Okay. So, social, meaning with other people—that has something to do with it—and cognitive theory means, ‘Okay, how your brain is processing everything.”

KATIE: It’s processing stuff. It’s taking—

CHELSEA: It’s just—I don’t know, you know?

KATIE: It’s like they gave a definition to teaching—


KATIE: That isn’t—

CHELSEA: —and called it a school of learning, yeah.

KATIE: [laugh]

CHELSEA: But social cognitive theory is interested in self-efficacy, behavioral capacity. So, it’s, like, understanding and having the skills to perform certain behaviors. So, maybe just asking for a certain kind of behavior isn’t enough. Maybe you have to build up skills, so that students can actually engage in those behaviors.

KATIE: Right.

CHELSEA: Expectations, expectancies—and that’s assigning value to outcomes of behavior change. So, if someone is misbehaving, you say, “Okay. Hey, if we change your behavior, this is what you can expect. Self-control, observational learning, and reinforcements.” 

KATIE: Cool.

CHELSEA: It’s pretty straightforward. It’s just, like, a lot of—I mean, I feel like a lot of classroom management takes into account these different approaches and things like that.

KATIE: Okay.

CHELSEA: The next one—possibly, my biggest beef with educational psychology—it’s called information processing theory or theories. “The information processing model places emphasis on how information entering through the senses is—”now, again, this is a quote, so I didn’t come up with this way of stating it, but—”how information entering through the senses is encoded, stored, retrieved, and utilized by the brain—”

KATIE: Nope. It’s not stored, so don’t worry. It doesn’t stay there long.

CHELSEA: “—Thus, learning becomes a process of committing our symbolic representations to memory where they may be processed and the study of learning is primarily approached through the study of memory.”

KATIE: I think we can move on; let’s go right now. [laugh].

CHELSEA: Well, “and information processing memory is viewed from a computer-model perspective by which the mind takes in information, performs operations on it to change its form and contents, stores the information; retrieves it when needed, and generates responses to it.” Brains are not computers. I’m just going to say this to everyone working in this field. “I appreciate the fact that you have a useful analogy, but I think we’re doing damage to the conversation around humanity when we treat brains like computers and vice versa.”

KATIE: Yep. I wish.

CHELSEA: Like, love had no place in an input-output machine like this. Like, this reads like a technical manual that I would have to read, like, “Oh, my hard drive broke. How do I fix it?” I’d open up a page and be, like, “Well, how is the information encoded?” And then, “It goes through, like, a , you know, a USB-3 cable, and then it gets stored in the hard drive.” Like, that—

KATIE: It has a bad driver inside

CHELSEA: —I don’t why I don’t, I mean, again, maybe the language is useful.

KATIE: This doesn’t simplify it, at any way, that makes it more clear.

CHELSEA: Well, so day-to-day instructional design, you might take account some of these approaches, because you’re interested in how people best process what you’re teaching in the classroom—let’s just say that. But it is a very weirdly mechanical approach—I’m not exactly sure—it just seems to be, like, why would you want to turn humans into computers?

KATIE: That’s what I mean. It’s, like, almost not even human.

CHELSEA: It’s almost like it gets in the way of itself and gets in the way of understanding humans better to pretend, first, that they’re computers, and then jump off from that point, instead of just acknowledging that they’re not computers and coming up with our theories based on that—but that’s just me; that’s my beef; I’m going to get off my soapbox now—what’s next one?

KATIE: So, the next one—I feel like I [laugh] am not worked up enough for this—is cognitive and social constructivism. So, it’s a theory that says that, “Learners construct knowledge, rather than just passively take in information.” And says, “People experience the world and reflect on those experiences. They build their own representations, incorporate new information into what already exists of their knowledge,” right? “to what they already have.” I think some of my learners probably do this. I don’t know that many of my learners are on this level of—you know what I mean? This feels like very, very high-level-sort-of-thinking.

CHELSEA: I don’t think it’s meant to be. I think it’s just—

KATIE: No, I don’t [sigh]—okay—


KATIE: —I understand what this is trying to say, But what I have seen a lot of this year, is even when students are presented with valid information—right—-factual things—they still aren’t inclined to change that in their head—does that make sense?


KATIE: It’s almost, like, even being presented with something that’s true and factual, is it enough for them to then say, “Okay, I need to update this in my brain,” right? This has been proven incorrect.

CHELSEA: It’s a little—it’s becoming a little too passive or something? I mean, this is just saying that, like, any information they take in whatsoever—

KATIE: Yeah.

 CHELSEA: —they do it through—

KATIE: That’s fair.

CHELSEA: —making something.

KATIE: I guess I’m thinking of, like, specific events where I have given factual proof to something, and the student’s, like, “Well, that’s not right.”

CHELSEA: Well—I mean—okay, but I don’t think it’s about the truth or falsity of the thing being discussed. I think that your kids are probably still doing, according to this theory, the work of constructing new schemas or whatever or knowledge.

KATIE: Even by not checking? Gotcha.

CHELSEA: They’re constructing new knowledge in their heads by some, sort of, process, but something is going wonky in the process in that case.

KATIE: It’s getting spit back up.

CHELSEA: But I think the constructivist would say that, “No, that’s still constructivism at work. It’s just that the process is a little muddled, maybe.

KATIE: That’s fair, I suppose.

CHELSEA: Maybe. I don’t know.

KATIE: No. I think there’s something to be said for that. So, part of this are the processes of assimilation and accommodation. So, “Assimilation is the process of taking new information and fitting it into what already exists in their brain. And accommodation refers to using newly acquired information to revise and redevelop.” The accommodation is what I was thinking of. Do I think that they’re assimilating it? Sure. But, in some of the specific things that I’m thinking of, the accommodation doesn’t occur.

CHELSEA: Ah-ha, so—

KATIE: Like, okay. I had student tell me—

CHELSEA: I get new information. How do I—

KATIE: Okay, self—an example—


KATIE: I had a student tell me that it was not one of Hitler’s explicit goals to kill Jews. And I said the ‘Final Solution’ is proof that that—you know what I mean—that he did set out to intentionally murder Jews. Presented the ‘Final Solution’ from relevant sources, and still that student was, like, “Well, that’s not true.”

CHELSEA: Yeah. I mean, again, I think that, in that case, probably what’s going on there is that they are redeveloping their existing schema. But that just means that they’re redeveloping it in a way that is like, “Well now, I’ve got to find something to refute that new claim.”

KATIE: Sure.

CHELSEA: So, it’s, like, the processes happen, but they don’t necessarily—

KATIE: That’s [crosstalk 00:33:52].

CHELSEA: —have anticipated outcomes for teachers, for sure. 

KATIE: Okay. And that—yeah.

CHELSEA: But yeah, I see what you mean there about how there’s, like, an accommodation—something about a breakdown in the accommodations cycle.

KATIE: Yeah, like it’s still not connecting some places. Okay. And the last one is motivation—The thing we all need more of. The thing I need more of.

CHELSEA: We were just talking about this the other day. I was listening to that masterclass, the guy who designed the Sims—I can’t even remember his name right now—I’m an idiot, but I’ll look it up and report back—but the guy who designed the Sims has a masterclass, and he’s talking about game design. And he was talking about the role that motivation plays in making gaming experiences fun for players and motivation as one of those things. Because if somebody is not motivated to play your game, they’re just going to get bored and walk away. 

And he was saying something he had heard somebody say, “A lot of problems of education and learning, we think, are problems of, ‘Well, how do we teach; how do we get this learning across?’ But really, how do we do education, but they’re really problems of, how do we motivate? How do we motivate kids to want to learn? How do we motivate kids to be social in constructive ways?” That kind of stuff. They’re really problems of motivation rather than problems of instructional design or something. Like, your problem is not [chuckle] your classroom teaching practices are bad, your problem is that your students aren’t motivated to do whatever it is you’re having them do.

It feels to me, a little bit, inspired by Maslow, like, we got to meet some basic needs here first. That has something to do with motivation, to add a little more of that ed psych research on motivations concern the will that students bring to a task—like we were just talking about—their level of interest, intrinsic motivation, any goals that they might have that guide their behavior. So, maybe, “Hey, I want to get at least a ‘B’ on this test,” something like that, and their belief about causes of their successes or failure.

There’s this form of attribution theory that describes how students’ beliefs about the causes of academic success or failure affect their emotions and motivations—you’ve probably seen a lot of this in your classroom. There’s an example, when students attribute failure to lack of ability. And ability is perceived as uncontrollable, like, “Well, I don’t have the ability to do it; therefore, it’s out of my control.” They then experience emotions of shame and embarrassment. Those, consequently, decrease effort and show poorer performance over time.

So, in contrast—and this is where, you know, a good teacher can step in and, kind of, subtly redirect a student’s thinking about this sort of thing—when students attribute failure to a lack of effort. So, like, “Oh, I see I got a ‘D’ because I waited to the last minute and didn’t spend enough time doing it,” when they attribute it to a lack of effort, and effort is perceived as controllable, they’re, like, “Oh, yeah. I actually—I didn’t give it my best effort; I could’ve done this and this to have a better outcome.” Then they experience emotions of guilt. And they, consequently, increase effort and show improved performance. Kind of interesting.

KATIE: Yeah. It’s, sort of, interesting to be doing this topic right now, because these past few weeks of school have been really hard. Like, we have had some very difficult stuff coming up for our students. And so…

CHELSEA: Yeah. I don’t feel like this is limited to just school either. I have been feeling in a—I think there is just a malaise affecting everyone and everything.

KATIE: [crosstalk 00:37:02]. Like, I mean, some of the things that we’ve, like, an event that we had happen is something that I can’t remember in nine years happening before. And just some of the stuff that I’ve been trying to unpack and work through with some of them students. So, some are like it’s been really heavy. So, it’s really—I’m pretty rundown about it, I guess, is what I’m coming to realize very quickly. And as I’m thinking about, you know, these tools or these psychological approaches, to look at my kids—my guys, especially—it gives me a lot to think about. But it’s also, like, I keep falling back into Maslow. It’s, like, the first place I go, obviously. 

But I think that this idea of attributing failure, “It’s a lack of effort,” is interesting. But I also see students use that as, like, “Well, I could’ve done better, but I just didn’t try.” So, it’s also, like, they [crosstalk  00:37:49] great.

CHELSEA: Ah, they, like, write it off.

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: Interesting. They skipped the guilt phase.

KATIE: Yeah, exactly.


KATIE: And I don’t know if that’s just them saying it because they’re embarrassed that they didn’t do it.

CHELSEA: It’s probably some degree that—

KATIE: Yeah.

CHELSEA: —It also could be that they’re…

KATIE: But I think that some of them, that’s absolutely true. “Oh, I could’ve done better, but I just didn’t try.”

CHELSEA: Yeah. I think also, maybe, like, a home environment that doesn’t necessarily value whatever might contribute to some of that too. You never know what’s going on—

KATIE: And as they’re, like—

CHELSEA: —and there’s a lot of factors.

KATIE: When I have parent-teacher conferences coming up—and those are always really telling for me, too—and so, it’s, kind of, fun, actually, to be refreshing all of this before I meet a bunch of parents, because I’m going to be going through this, like, “Okay, this is what we have [laugh] to work with or not. This is where I’ve got to fill in the gaps,” you know?

CHELSEA: Yep. All right. Any final thoughts before we move on to ‘Fill in the Blank’?

KATIE: No. I just, you know, maybe, like, “Send that teacher in your life a case of wine,” you know?

CHELSEA: [laugh] An entire case of wine.

KATIE: Just, like, check in—

CHELSEA: “Send them some hard liquor,”

KATIE: Yeah, just chocolate. A lot—

CHELSEA: Chocolate…

KATIE: —of us like that. We like snacks; we like nice pens—Don’t buy us cheap pens; we need nice pens.

CHELSEA: I know, teachers are opinionated on pens; this is true.

KATIE: You know, we’re—we’re pretty easy to please as people; we just, like, want a nice pen.

CHELSEA: Also, just having a lot of demands being made of you.

KATIE: Yeah, I think I’m—I’m feeling worn down in way that I don’t ever get to this early in the year—


KATIE: —and it is scary—


KATIE: —and I’m not alone. So, it’s very telling of the system.

CHELSEA: Yep. Well, you all—

KATIE: [sigh] Pray for us.

CHELSEA: —send us an email—

KATIE: Pray for all of us [chuckle].

CHELSEA: —We’ll arrange for you to send KATIE a care package [crosstalk 00:39:32].

KATIE: No, no, no. Please don’t. No, no, no—

CHELSEA: [laugh]

KATIE: —-Please talk to the people—

CHELSEA: In your life.

KATIE: —in your life and maybe your kids’ teachers, and just, like, “Quick, are you good, fam?” And we’re going to say, “Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, aha.” And then we’re going to cry [laugh]. No, I just mean this is especially telling, you know, as the first nine weeks is over. And so, it’s interesting. It is interesting.


KATIE: So anyways, cool? All right, ready to move on, Fill in the Blank?


KATIE: Would you like to do the last episode’s discussion.?

CHELSEA: I’d love to.

KATIE: So, last episode’s question—what was the last episode about where I did this?

CHELSEA: [unintelligible 00:40:04] I’m not really sure why you did this.

KATIE: So, last episode’s question.


KATIE: So, before there’s Tiger King, there is a new story that made national news on October 18th, 2011, because an Ohio man had turned loose his more than 40 exotic animals including tigers, lions, and bears—oh, my. This man was referenced in the now famous documentary, Tiger King. And ‘Jungle Jack’ Hanna showed up on the scene of this event to help locate those missing animals. What was the name of that man who let loose all of his exotic animals? It was Terry Thompson.

CHELSEA: Sure was.

KATIE: Terry Thompson.


KATIE: I’ve been seeing a bunch of news articles relating to that. This is the anniversary.

CHELSEA: Yeah, it’s the anniversary of it.

KATIE: So, maybe you’ve even seen them come by, because it was—it’s still national news even as it is remembered. But…

CHELSEA: Well, it had a lot of effect on exotic animal education.

KATIE: It did. And especially when Tiger King came out and baby got a whole new life. So…

CHELSEA: It sure did.

KATIE: Anyways, this week’s question, you wrote the question—the substance question.

CHELSEA: Yeah, because this is going to be released on Veteran’s Day, so it’s a question about ‘Veteran’s Day,’ actually.

KATIE: It’s a good idea.

CHELSEA: There are three US states whose veteran population exceeds one-million. That’s California, 1.56-million. Texas, with 1.46-million, and Florida, with 1.44-million. And the states with the highest percentage of veterans are Alaska, Virginia, Montana, Wyoming, Hawaii, and Maine. The Maine one, kind of, surprised me, and I don’t know why.

KATIE: Yeah, everything made sense until Maine, all of them: check, check, check; Maine, question mark.

CHELSEA: Yep. All around 10 percent of the adult population being veterans in those states. These numbers still make up just a fraction of the veterans. Approximately, how many veterans are currently living in the US? It’s a lot.

KATIE: It is.


KATIE: It’s more than I thought; I don’t know why. I don’t have a very good scope of the size of the military, though. I think that’s the [crosstalk 00:41:49] problem.

CHELSEA: It’s lorge.

KATIE: It is.

CHELSEA: It’s very lorge.

KATIE: So, thank you, veterans.

CHELSEA: Yep. All right, what did you learn this week?

KATIE: So, I listened to one of my favorite podcast called, Noble Blood, which is, typically, about nobility from all over the world, and, sort of, their really fascinating lives and the things they get themselves into. And then the one that I listen to yesterday as I was mowing, was about George Washington. And I was, like, “Why ever would this podcast cover him?” And it was about the inaccuracies of the history that suggests that it was ever considered for him to be our king after the war.

And so, it’s a great episode; it covers the letter that this one guy wrote where he, sort of, suggested it. It covered George Washington’s quick shutdown of, like, “Ain’t no way.” But at the end of it, [chuckle] you find out that George Washington, our president, former president, George Washington—ours, like, he’s still alive—our George Washington and Queen Elizabeth II, the current queen, are second cousins who are seven times removed.


KATIE: How cool is that?

CHELSEA: That’s wild.

KATIE: I listened to that. I was on the mower, and I was, like, “Wait,” and I stopped the mower. And I, like, went back, and I played it again. And I sat there, and, like, my eyes, kind of, got squinty, because I was, like, “Am I hearing this?” And then I was, like, “Wait.” And then I listened to her—this [laugh] host explain it, the entire tree to that point—

CHELSEA: The family tree?

KATIE: Yeah, again. And then she said it, and I was, like, “Okay.” And then I immediately came in here, and I played it for you—

CHELSEA: Yeah, she did.

KATIE: —[laugh] because I was, like, “Please advise…” So, anyways, what I learned is that President George Washington and Queen Elizabeth II—the current queen—are second cousins seven times removed.


KATIE: How wild is that?

CHELSEA: That’s pretty wild.

KATIE: It’s pretty cool.


KATIE: Yeah. So, that’s what I learned—

CHELSEA: Interesting.

KATIE: —That I’m totally going to never use that again. But I love knowing it.

CHELSEA: [crosstalk 00:43:38] whenever you have a chance; you’re going to be, like, “Hey, did you know?”

KATIE: Yeah. No, it’s in there for good, now.


KATIE: Mm-hm. I’m going to tell a lot of people that.


KATIE: All right. So, what did you learn?

CHELSEA: Oh, I started—I’ve been dabbling with learning Unity, which is a game development engine, basically. Got a lot of modern games are built on top of Unity. And I’ve been trying to learn a little bit about game design and do some game design stuff. That’s why I was listening to that masterclass about it, too. But it’s, kind of, generally, interested in it—I, sort of, do some work in this field adjacent to my day job—but just trying to learn the ins and outs of this program. 

And what I got to this week was, finally, working up to the point of understanding the interface, you know, and enough about how the program works and stuff to be able to program a little—I made him an astronaut; he’s a little 2D character; I programmed him to move around the screen, just like a movement script for a player—

KATIE: He looks very cute [crosstalk 00:44:36].

CHELSEA: —in a game. So, well he’s not animated at all, so he’s just, like, completely static and just floats around when you hit the arrow keys. But I think the next step is going to be making the sprites for the animation—

KATIE: Like, his arms.

CHELSEA: Yeah, like, arms and legs moving, so it looks like he’s walking. And then doing that for each of the directions that he can walk right.

KATIE: That’ll be cool.

CHELSEA: So, that’s the next step. But I felt proud of myself, and I got even a very basic level of it functioning. So, that’s what I did, yeah. All right, any wrap-up thoughts? Anything we should know?

KATIE: No. Just, like, [crosstalk 00:45:10].

CHELSEA: And we’re not going to be here next week, but next episode, I mean.

KATIE: Check on your teacher friends, thank you. Veterans, enjoy your breaks. Spend Thanksgiving sleeping—

CHELSEA: Eating a lot.

KATIE: —probably grading—if that’s anything like what mine will be like [laugh]. Maybe, like, binge-watch a new show.

CHELSEA: Yeah. Take care of yourself.

KATIE: Yeah, just do something for you. [music] Don’t get, you know, don’t let yourself become me at this moment, is my story.

CHELSEA: Good advice. 

KATIE: We will see you in four weeks. 

CHELSEA: Yep. Signing off.

KATIE: See you.



CHELSEA: [00:45:53] Hey, listeners. Thanks for supporting 16:1.

KATIE: We’re trying to grow our audience, so please check us out at sixteentoone.com, all spelled out. And tell your friends about the show.

CHELSEA: On our website, you can find links to follow us on social media; an archive of all our old episodes, and a contact form where you can get in touch.

KATIE: Thanks again for listening. And we’ll catch you next show.

CHELSEA: Let her eat cake.

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