Data… is one of those words…
Some say /ei/ as in day-ta (like the robot guy in Star Trek),
and others say data (like the ‘a’ in cat).
I think I am partial to the first pronunciation…but can be heard using both…
I remember trying to teach Grade 1 Spelling, and helping students with all the ‘rules and exceptions’ of the English language. At one point I had a ‘jail’ on a classroom wall…the place where we posted the spelling words that didn’t follow the ‘rules.’
If I was to present data as a spelling word, I would probably use the first pronunciation (dei-ta, as in ‘day’). I recall trying to teach students a 2-vowel rule: where one vowel is ‘bossy’ and tells the other vowel to ‘say its name’ – but if it doesn’t…then off to jail. Add that to all the other ‘exceptions’ like ‘i before e, except after c’ – and Grade 1 Spelling can be a tricky landscape to conquer (for both the teacher and the students…).
Anyways, about data…
Last week, I had fun travelling with 3 other students to Calgary –
– we had one goal: to collect as much data as possible –
The data collection process, although focused on collecting information from others, included confirmatory aspects of myself.
I learned that I enjoy research methods because I am…
…and I am detail-oriented (well…I already knew that…)
but I also look for generalizations…sort of like identifying the ‘jailed’ spelling exceptions to the general rules…‘except’ I think the exceptions and details can breathe life into our generalizations…instead of being banished to ‘jail’…
Our data collection was guided by an over-arching question:
Why teachers teach?
Some of my own personal answers were revealed:
Others were trying to find answers through technology:
While some waited in line, with questions for David Suzuki:
In the end, I still discovered I have more questions than answers.
That must be… why researchers research 🙂
P.S. If you are interested, I will be posting a summary of our data collection results on our ACME website in the near future 🙂