Jemmy Button, Fuegian Sneetch
Welcome to the Poedeutics Blog. I've chosen a word of my own invention as its title. It's a neologism formed from "poetry" and "propaedeutics." The first word is familiar to everyone; the second is philosophy jargon referring to the study of principles important for understanding a particular branch of knowledge, especially at an introductory level. My first researches took me into deep conversation with children about time, energy, and matter--often abetted by their expressive language. My Cornell background taught me to value the organization of thinking in a field of study in terms of careful relationships among key concepts--usefully illustrated as a "concept map." For two decades I kept a folder labeled Poedeutics in my computer with essays and articles in progress anchored to my scholarly roots.
Poedeutics became my code name for these unpublished writings. With this blog I'm going public with my attempt to define a branch of educational studies:
Poedeutics: "the study of imaginative imagery and fundamental principles that promote insights into a field of inquiry, especially for novices."
Watch this blog for stories, rants, and projects that give meaning to the idea that governs my thinking about teaching and learning science.