Bloom's Taxonomy

I was reading a post on Michelle Martin’s Bamboo Project blog which highlighted her readers’ responses to learning through blogging.

There were many positive responses which reinforced my own thoughts about learning and blogging. I like what Catherine Lombardozzi said:

The act of writing has a way of crystallizing your thinking on a topic.  As I have worked on this blog – and other journals more private than this one – over the last year or so, I have come to appreciate how much clearer my thinking becomes as I try to put my musings into sentences and paragraphs…. I have found that writing forces me to coral nebulous thoughts into something coherent, to name and own what I really think on a subject, to bring together ideas from several sources, and to consider how a potential audience might react.

Having made a commitment to posting here on the Learning Journal blog at least once a week, I also notice that when something piques my interest, I store it away as a potential topic for an entry.  Knowing I may want to write about an idea causes me to mull things over that may – in the past – have come and gone in my head without ever finding a place to settle.  Even if I don’t actually write about something in the end, I find myself thinking about these interesting ideas more thoroughly.

The other thing that caught my eye was the mention of Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Somewhere in the recesses of my brain, I know I’ve come across this before. It turns out that my friend, who is a secondary school teacher, has mentioned this. According to her, teachers have to indicate which of the six categories each learning activity aims to achieve.

Looking at the diagram (you can click the one above for a bigger version, the original can be found here), I thought that it should be more of a pyramid, similar to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. In Maslow’s hierarchy, lower order needs must be fulfilled before progressing on to the next level of needs. Similarly in Bloom’s Taxonomy, you need to have knowledge before comprehending, comprehend before applying and so forth.

Later, I realised that there is a spiral in the middle of the diagram which represents this flow. Seen three-dimensionally, it should be an continuous upward spiral, implying that the final stage – evaluation – necessarily creates new knowledge. Then the whole process repeats itself. This is very much the story of learning, in a macro sense, throughout human history.

And that’s what I learnt from looking at the diagram.

Oh yes, if you are interested in Personal Learning Environments (PLEs), Michelle’s Bamboo Project blog is the one to follow.

Bloom’s Taxonomy – Learning in Action graphic
by K. Aainsqatsi
published under CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported license
from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Blooms_rose.svg