Sunday, March 21, 2010
Esemplastic Apperceptions of Metacognition amongst the Multiple-Gifted
Or: How Jack and Jill All-Trades thinks!
That long string of unfamiliar words, interesting, or off-putting?
Jack and Jill All-Trades generally would be enlivened by the challenge. And if Jack is predominantly right-brained, and Jill is predominantly left-brained, then each may reflect their interest in the notion of ‘esemplastic apperceptions of metacognition amongst the multiple-gifted’ in an interestingly dissimilar manner.
Jill would most likely take to her dictionary and soon have ‘esemplastic apperceptions of metacognition amongst the multiple-gifted’ translated into some such precise phraseology as, ‘accommodating variables and reflecting on one’s own thoughts as a person with many gifts.’ Then, asked to explore the possibilities inherent in the statement, and given that she herself is defined as ‘All-Trades’, Jill might undertake an itemization and database study of herself (and others) on a multiple of levels that correlates and substantiates her initial suppositions. As such, Jill’s study may well be as comprehensive and teleological as is comprehensible, yet she will probably experience dissatisfaction with her inability (of course) to have included every possible variable.
Jack (even after an excursion into the dictionary) would most likely arrive at a self-satisfactory understanding of ‘esemplastic apperceptions of metacognition amongst the multiple-gifted’ and, asked to explore the possibilities inherent in the statement, may randomly play with the concept at will. Jack may adopt the title for his band, calling it The Apperceptions. Or he may devise a game-board called Metacognition. Or he may... but that’s Jack, for you. Although quite capable, he’s not innately given to line by line delineation. And, after as discursive an exploration as probable, he’ll most likely arrive at a universal yet esoteric perception of the significance of his undertakings. Yet he too will feel that he could have done better were he not so interested ‘in just about everything.’
At issue are the inherent difficulties that the multiple-gifted experience with the specifics of task-oriented as well as day to day expectations of life. The multi-capabilities inherent in their natures creates a perpetual series of cognitive dissonances that, although perhaps not entirely debilitating, are impeding to their potentialities. Multiple-potentiality, that is, is of itself a hindrance to sustained excellence in any one endeavor. To be (a famous) artist, writer, singer, actor, athlete, academic, or not? Which? And, over time, as the multiple-gifted child grows into adult, the choice (and inherent frustration) of exercising the generality of one’s multiple-gifts, as opposed to concentrating on the specificity of any one gift, might better be understood by the individual who is more practiced at apperceptions of metacognition. That is, more practiced at an understanding of his or her thinking.
The implications for educators (and for all those wishing to understand themselves a little better) is that the multiple-gifted (indeed, as well as for all of us) are both innately and endemically habituated. More clearly understood, such behavioral patterns might better be addressed, deployed, and facilitated toward furthering the contribution of the self toward the self, and toward others, thereby augmenting our contribution in general toward the health of the whole.
Esemplastic: Molding, shaping, or fashioning into one; accommodating many variables
Apperception: Mind’s perception of itself. ~ is the essential mental act in the great stages of mental generalization, perception, conception, and judgement. - Baldwin, James (1861-1934)
Metacognition: Awareness of thinking about what one is thinking.
Teleological: View that developments are due to the purpose or design that is served by them.
So may we smile at obfuscations, ha!