Thursday, 20 January 2011

Personality types in group working

As we know, people learn in different ways. We learn all day everyday, however useful (or useless) it may be! 

Kolb created his learning theory setting out four distinct learning styles based on learning cycles. Based on his work, Honey and Mumford developed a questionnaire to distinguish your own learning style. These four styles were called 'activist', 'reflector', 'theorist' and 'pragmatist'. Each individual may be just one of these, or a mixture of all. There isn't a bad or good way to learn (although effort still has to be put in!)

Find out your learning style - My Learning Style

During our group work we guessed each others learning style, and although I do not know some of my group much at all, it was quite easy to get the gist of each person's way. This was not the case for everyone, and the people I knew more I actually guessed their personality incorrectly.

 I am a strong activist learner, meaning I work well in groups, good at chairing meetings etc, but also jump straight into the deep end and act first, think later. Knowing this it makes alot of sense (good and bad) and I can notice how evident it is in my everyday life. For example I am always rushing around, trying to get as much done as I can, often this means doing things to a lesser standard than if I did less things to a higher standard. In my working process I like to get things done right there and then, before thinking of the consequences or thinking if there is actually point in doing it at all. It means I probably waste time doing things I never needed to. I can connect this with university work, my job and also just the way I live my life with things like learning to cook, going shopping.. simple everyday motions. On the other hand, being an activist enables me to work well in groups, confident to contribute ideas and have my say. I like to keep my eye on the job and being in charge comes naturally. Hopefully this will benefit me in my future career.

Everyone guessed me correctly so I obviously have my personality on my sleeve. Others were less obvious, especially those who were more theorist or pragmatic learners. It may just be an observation, and not a correct one, but I felt the quieter people often had theorist traits, maybe this is them sitting back and logically thinking before acting before more activist people, who jump into things, maybe making share ideas quickly which could mean they are louder? This was just an observation from meetings I have had with my group although this could be based on personalities, moods and how much we have to say! Our group had a mixture of personality types however activists and reflectors were most common. Only one is a pragmatic learner, which I think it could be beneficial if we had more, as they often have a different lookout on things, 'trying things in practice' right away. During our project I will try to remember this and seek the opinion of everyone before jumping to conclusions. Although it is beneficial to have a mixture of learners, it is also interesting to have the same type working together to see the outcomes. For example if something needs done quickly and under pressure, it may be a good idea to set this task to the activist learners. Likewise, the reflectors could be set tasks that require alot of indepth thinking. However, it is useful to broaden horizons and try to adapt to learn in other ways, which could ultimately work better for the individual.

Brogan Keenan – Activist/Theorist. (theorist/reflector). To me, Brogan is defiantly a strong activist. She is great at taking the lead and being party of a group. She is well motivated and gets straight on to a challenge as soon as it arrises.

Karen Lyttle – Activist. From past experience Karen works well in teams, listening to others but playing an active role and giving her opinions which demonstrates her playing an active role. I am surprised she has no other personality traits as I feel she sometimes shows reflector traits.

Sarah Mowbray - Theorist. (activist/pragmatist). Sarah is often quieter than the activists at the beginning of a discussion but you can tell she is listening and contemplating. This shows her considering and processing ideas, which after time, she then explains to the group. This helps in different ways than the activists can.

Jaqui Page - Theorist. Jaqui comes across as a bit of a perfectionist which is evident in her work but also in the way she works in a group. For example she takes pride in how she talks and what she says, making sure her point is put across clearly. This helps in group discussions and producing work as it is of high quality and well thought through

Thomas Marriner - Activist/Reflector. Thomas seems to be a mixture of all of the types to me inittialy as he is quite hard to read. Sometimes he plays more of an activist role, talking more etc, and other times he seems quiet, concentrating and deep in thought, but then finishes with his ideas. This mix of traits is interesting as he is helpful in ways I might not expect.

Emma Thompson -Reflector/Theorist. [pragmatist]. Emma definitely thinking differently than the the way activists do. This is shown through the way she works, individually or in groups. She takes a step back and thinks deeply about what she is going to do/say and often thinks about things I would never have. Since she is main reflector of the group it is good to have her opinion and take ideas from the way she acts during group meetings.

Interesting though. The more I think about it the more I think about it. Currently I am watching my flatmates in action cooking and can't help wandering what type of learning they're tiny braincells are using..

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Banksy's intriging movie questioning - What is art?

Banksys film 'Exit through the Gift Shop' is a comical and ironic whilst being extremely interesting and though provoking of the idea of street art, and art in general, and questions what makes something art.

After walking through the streets of Paris for days I discovered much art plastered over brick walls, street pavements and anywhere hidden or obvious, depending on the affect the artist intended to create.

Banksy's film is unique and intriging, looking from the view of a untrained obsessed filmmaking fanatic who follows street artists around, clumsily filming every move with no intention to take this filming any further. Until Banksy asks him to finally make this film on street art which he fails to do. Thierry (the 'filmmaker' is then urged by Banksy to make his own street art with no experience or passion for drawing, painting etc. He follows on to make his own exhibition of his art, costing millions of pounds and selling rip offs of Banskys, Warhols and other Pop Artists work. For example he creates this, a 6ft tall Campbells soup tin can:

The irony of the whole film is that Thierry succeeds in selling lots of his work, making millions of dollars from knowing nothing and being able to create none of his own work. What does this mean? Anyone can do it? Street art is graffiti? There is no substance to it?

What did Banksy say to the fact that someone can do this from nothing in a few weeks?

'I don't really know who the last laugh is on.'

Street Art en Paris

Walking, cycling around Paris I couldn't help but look up at the beautiful traditional architecture of the small alleyways and winds, often to see street art plastered on the ends of buildings. Reoccurring was that of the Space Invador and a few of Banky's pieces, although many others existed, along with much more graffiti like art.

Space Invador attacks...

Other artists make their mark:

This is only a taster of the art displayed around the busy streets of Paris. Interesting to see opinions of what they think is art and what is graffiti. What do you think?