Sunday, February 27, 2011

Chapter 6- Constructivism

My interest was immediately peaked when I read the names Vygotsky, Bruner and Piaget in the first couple of pages of Chapter 6. My background is in Art Education and these three individuals' theories influenced the very standards that compile the expectations of art education. I supposed it is the relation of the learner to their social environment, the procedural problem solving , and the role of the facilitator that pioneers in art education related to with regards to constructivist theory. Art education has always been struggling to find a way to secure its spot in the curriculum, so when Vygotsky's ,"The Psychology of Art" surfaced, art educators incorporated it into its advocacy arsenal.

Moving on in the chapter, I found the section on "private speech" to extremely interesting as well. "However, overt verbalization can occur at any age when people encounter problems or difficulties"(pg. 250), this sentence made me laugh out loud. As I was reading the various stages of "private speech", I kept thinking to myself, "well I still do this when I lose something". If I can't find my keys, I speak out loud the entire time I am looking for them.

I also agree completely with the the role of the teacher in a constructivist setting. I fully believe that we should be facilitators as much as possible. I feel that if we don't allow students to problem solve on their own, they will never develop those cognitive skills that are necessary to function in society. I am a Digital Arts teacher, as well as art and ceramics; most of my lessons begin with a modeling of a skill and then the students work on their own. If they get stuck, I try to guide them through a series of questions that most of the time leads them to their answer.

My question for you all in other subject areas, Is how do you or how could you approach your lesson in a constructivist manner?


Nila Pena said...

If I ever go back to the classroom I think I would use the TARGET concept. I think it's a great use of tools that are already at hand.
TARGET: task design, distribution of authority, recognition of students, grouping arrangements, evaluation practices, and time allocation ( Epstein, 1989).

Sheri Higgs said...

As a science and math educator I have used the constructivist approach for several years without being realizing that's "what I do". I think the most important questions I ask my students are "Why?" and "How?". It may take a little longer, but the concept and information discovered are internalized at a deeper level.

Renae Molden said...

Create a learning environment that presents problems that are of emerging relevance and interest to your student. Organize curriculum to include “Big Picture” ideas. These ideas can easily be understood in individual parts when related back to the whole picture. Take an authentic interest in student views and perspectives. These ideas can be used to choose learning materials. Find out what the student already believes and knows about the concept(s). Value the student’s contributions. Finally, assess the student’s knowledge while you are teaching. Find ways to evaluate learning within the context of the learning environment.