I took Ed. Psych in undergrad and we sort of talked about "third space." Here is my understanding:First space = learning/knowledge from home.Second space = learning/knowledge from an "institution" (school).Third space's goal is to merge these two spaces to form a third space of knowledge for students. So, more or less, I think it is the idea to connect home and school in learning.
I was also fairly unclear on the idea of a Third Space.. I thought he was going to explain it but never seemed to. Tamara seems to have explained it well. As I was reading Gutiérrez, I noticed that he mentioned that in the school the article was based on, the majority of the students were hispanic. He said that some of them, however, were not. I found it interesting that the instructors in the program seemed to use code switching quite frequently. It seemed that the instructors had established a "community of learners" as we have discussed in class. I found myself wondering if those students who were not hispanic felt like a part of the community, with the frequency of code switching that was going on in the class.Again, it can be difficult to make each student feel like a part of a community...
I agree with Tamara, as I understand it, third space is the juncture of the home and student identities into a learning environment that values what the students bring from their home identity and incorporates that into the more traditional notions of formal education. I think it is an intersection that many of the techniques we have studied strive to create. Community of learners, cultural capital, critical literacy, new literacies, etc... all strive to value what the child brings in from outside the institution.
I'm glad to hear that I wasn't the only one confused. I think I spent about 5 minutes looking for a definition of the "third space" in this article. The way that I interpreted it, although this may be incorrect, was similar to some of the other ideas expressed here; where the third space is this intersection of institutional learning and community/home learning. It seems to be a place where collaboration is truly valued in school.
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