I felt really, really good about today's class. I guess it only takes teaching for nearly a half century to get some things right! The awesome thing about today was that I was able to have the MAT students experience the learning cycle one more time with the Columbus lesson, and experience how sometimes the learning cycle begins at the end of a class period and continues the next day. I hope they realized that comparing the "homework" they did last night with a partner served as a preactive strategy today.
For the first time, the theory lesson went well for all of the theories. I've always been pleased with the schema theory sections with all the experiments - gets students involved and makes clear the connections between schema and instruction. But I've never quite liked doing the kind of activities I've done in the past with the other theories. But today, I was able to illustrate the other theories [Vygotsky, cognitive flexibility, and reader response] by refering to the lessons students had just experienced - and it worked so much better and was more efficient, too. Makes me wonder why it took me so long to figure this out. I've only been teaching a version of this stuff since 1975. DUH!