“A student can reflect on what she is learning in part by relating it to her own experiences and prior knowledge, a process that can yield answers to such questions as What does this mean to me?” (Levine 121)
This quote really stood out to me because it reminded me of one of the sessions I was having with my tutee where we were discussing Juhani Pallasmaa’s, Selections from The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses. For those who haven’t had a student with this reading the main idea behind this text is that we have lost our awareness to the world around us in neglecting to use our senses other than vision. In the one of Pallasmaa’s passages he discusses the difficulty in seeing objects during twilight. When I read the passage personally I envisioned a silhouette of five trees on a flat horizon on a summer evening. You can make out the shape of the trees, but that is all, you can’t see the leaves or even the color of the trees. I am outside witnessing this so I can smell the aroma of the trees in the air and feel a warm summer breeze pass by every few moments. When my tutee and I began to analyze this I asked him what he was envisioning when he read this text. He told me simply, a ball. At first I was surprised at how at how extremely different our images of this passage were, but we were able to use it for further analyze the quote. I began to ask him questions like; if there is little lighting how can you tell it’s a ball? He told me he could make it out from the shadow and the silhouette and he could feel the “rubbery-ness” of the ball. From here he was able to make the analysis on his own that when the one sense we depend on the most is hindered, we can use the others to find clarity in the world around us. So although my tutee and I envisioned this passage in completely different fashions, he was able to draw an analysis by applying his own experiences to the text he was reading.