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Theories Of Learning mod


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  • The presence of explicit theory in public documents is virtually nil. Recent research suggests that teachers have little explicit knowledge of educational theory Dominant discourse – the levels approach of the national curriculum (Piaget) group work approach favoured by classroom teachers (Vytgotsky)
  • 1953 revolves round the review that people learn best by being rewarded for the right responses – “operant conditioning”. Students can be trained by the offer of tangible reward to replicate approved behaviours – in schools we have seen merit marks, special privileges even football tickets
  • High levels of positive reinforcement Use of highly structured materials Step by step work towards externally imposed goals
  • Strictly scripted lessons Need to establish a baseline Still regularly applied in Criticisms Taking risks and making mistakes leads to learning – “If you always do what you’ve always done, then you’ll always get what you’ve always got” Subject v process debate Right answers by wrong methods Concepts develop Do externally conferred rewards encourage independent learning
  • Assimilation – child incorporates household objects into games Accommodation – don’t lean forward into thin air Does not require an adult to kick start Discovery/experiential learning Student centred
  • Passage from stage to stage – fundamental difference in the way people perceive the world Child moves progressively and naturally through the stages Concrete egocentric thinking towards abstract thinking Sensori-motor  - Differentiates self from objects  Recognises self as agent of action and begins to act intentionally: e.g. pulls a string to set mobile in motion or shakes a rattle to make a noise  Achieves object permanence: realises that things continue to exist even when no longer present to the sense Pre-operational   Learns to use language and to represent objects by images and words  Thinking is still egocentric: has difficulty taking the viewpoint of others  Classifies objects by a single feature: e.g. groups together all the red blocks regardless of shape or all the square blocks regardless of colour  Concrete operational   Can think logically about objects and events  Achieves conservation of number (age 6), mass (age 7), and weight (age 9)  Classifies objects according to several features and can order them in series along a single dimension such as size.  Formal operational   Can think logically about abstract propositions and test hypotheses systemtically  Becomes concerned with the hypothetical, the future, and ideological problems 
  • Move schools at 7 and 11 too close a match to be dismissed as coincidence Emphasis on defined levels of achievement Money cardboard (physical), picture (iconic) £ (symbolic)
  • Russian published in English in 1962
  • So far pretty similar to Piaget – more a change of emphasis than any real difference
  • Implications for classroom practice Teachers input should not wait on students internal development cf Piaget – stretching Teacher student partnership model rather than transmission reception model
  • Vytgotsky’s gift to the world!
  • Vytgotsky’s gift to the world!
  • Basic skills Transferable skills Upgrade of thinking skills concrete to abstract Mirrors Piaget concrete operational to formal operational Disembedded decontextualised as per Margaret Donaldson and Valerie Walkerdine Able to reflect on what is learned and on the language in which the learning takes place Can express beliefs, articulate preferences and express understandings that may have existed in a “common sense” way only very partially – much as you may be doing now Development of this expertise is not subject specific but once acquired can be used to facilitate and enhance all learning
  • Worked from 1960’s onwards
  • Spiralling – learning is revisited and reunderstood in the light of new learning eg a 5–y-o will understand what an elephant is but the understanding that the same person has of an elephant 20 yrs later is completely different Learning is provisional – can go backward as well as forward as new information/experience deconstructs previous learning Role of the home – parent's role in developing the child’s linguistic and cognitive skills Role of poverty ethnocentric learning Causes of poor performance may lie outside the learner Self image Personal expectations Expectations of others Classroom/college environment Culturally skewed nature of the curriculum
  • Transcript

    • 1. Theories of Learning and Teaching “ The hard bits” made easy
    • 2. Every teacher operates to a theory or theories of learning
      • May be
      • Consciously held
      • Referenced to published theory
      • May be
      • Operated on unknowingly
      • No reference to any public theory
      • An ‘espoused’ theory
    • 3. Major public theories of learning
      • Try to assess whether they lend support to or are supported by
      • Central government policy (e.g. the national curriculum)
      • Teachers
      • How far do the models favoured by teachers match the models favoured by government?
    • 4. Which Theories?
    • 5. Who’s Hot?
      • Writers who have
      • Support of or are supported by the dominant discourses in teaching and learning
      • Most obviously embedded in classroom practice
      • Offer the best routes to exploration of key issues (e.g. student centred/teacher led)
    • 6. Who’s not?
      • Theories where there is insufficient evidence to judge their influence
      • Learning Styles
      • Accelerated learning
      • Multiple intelligences
      • Alternative curricula
    • 7. Skinner’s Law of “Positive Reinforcement” Burrhus Frederic!
    • 8. Skinner’s Law of Positive Reinforcement
      • Right responses lead to rewards
      • Becomes…….
      • Potential of reward leads to right response
      • Intrinsic Extrinsic Rewards
    • 9. Skinner’s Law of Positive Reinforcement
      • Mistakes demoralise and demotivate
      • Materials should be error free
      • Students should not be over - faced
      • Success builds on success
    • 10. Jean Piaget Active Learning
    • 11. Piaget: Active Learning
      • Two interactive processes
      • Assimilation – learner incorporates physical world into his world
      • Accommodation – human beings adapt their understandings to the realities of the world
    • 12. Piaget: Active Learning
      • Staged Development
      • Sensory motor period (birth to eighteen months)
      • Pre-operational (2 – 7 years)
      • Concrete operational (7 – 11 years )
      • Formal operational (11 years onwards)
    • 13. Piaget: Active Learning
      • Piaget’s influence on education
      • Structure of formal schooling
      • Key stages of the national curriculum
      • Teaching methods
    • 14. Vytgotsky: Social Learning
    • 15. Vytgotsky: Social Learning
      • Learning is a “meaning making process”
      • Moves through stages
      • Difference between everyday concepts and “scientific” (deliberately taught) concepts
      • Difference between real and rote learning
    • 16. Vytgotsky: Social Learning
      • Human learning is social in nature
      • We grow into the intellectual life of those around us (Cognitive Apprenticeship)
      • Thought development is determined by language
      • Intellectual growth is contingent upon the development of the social key of language
    • 17. Vytgotsky: Social Learning The Zone of Proximal Development
    • 18. The Zone of Proximal Development WHAT STUDENTS CAN ACHIEVE BY THEMSELVES WHAT A STUDENT CAN ACHIEVE WITH TEACHING ZPD- the gap between what students can achieve by themselves and what they can achieve with ‘SCAFFOLDING’
    • 19. Vytgotsky: Learning across the Curriculum
      • Transferability of understanding
      • Development of higher functions
      • Breaking the confines of a particular subject
      • Conscious learning
      • Deliberate mastery
    • 20. Jerome Bruner The Cultural Context
    • 21. Bruner: The Cultural Context
      • Three significant developments
      • Spiralling
      • Role of the home
      • Links and mismatches between learning inside and outside formal education
    • 22. Summary
      • Skinner – behaviours
      • Piaget –stages
      • Vytgotsky – social learning
      • Bruner – the role of culture
    • 23. SO WHAT?
      • Gives us ideas of
      • Why the curriculum looks the way it does
      • Why we teach the way we do
      • Some other ways that you might teach
      • and
      • Why