(Not) The audience effect
Posted March 31, 2016on:
I recoiled when I saw this. It is the same reaction I have whenever I see such photos.
I call it like I see it: There is nothing more unnatural than putting on a show like this and having people gawk away.
This happens in some Singapore schools more often that we would like to admit, but we keeping doing this because we have visitors. I wonder if 1) the students feel like animals in a zoo, and 2) our visitors would rather see our cat belly.
The good thing about kids is that they learn to tune the adults out. The closer they are to being a teenager, the easier it is to do this.
The “good” thing about such photos is that I can use them as wrong examples of the audience effect.
I normally share this quote and describe a Vanderbilt study to illustrate the audience effect. I use it to justify why it this is important for the learner-as-teacher dimension in flipped learning. Such an authentic audience effect is positive because it enables and drives learning.
The showcase-for-audience effect is insidious. It is driven by marketing and public relations. It takes time and effort, but does not help the learner and learning. Unless it is about putting on a show.