Constructivism Power Point


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Math and Science Education 1 put together a brief overview of constructionist learning theory

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Constructivism Power Point

  2. 2. KEY FIGURES Jean Piaget Photo credit: Piaget observed that children learn in a very different way than adults. He discovered four stages of learning that children go through. 1. Sensorimotor – learning which takes place through a child’s senses and motor actions. 2. Preoperational – learning when children begin to use symbols and images. 3. Concrete Operational – when children begin to think logically understand facts. Usually around age 7. 4. Formal Operational – when children transition from concrete thinking into abstract thinking. Usually around age 12. Piaget also had three different classifications of how children formulate their knowledge. • Adaptation – children create their cognitive understanding at any given time. • Assimilation – children assimilate new knowledge as they experience new things. • Accommodation – children use experiences to change their knowledge base.
  3. 3. KEY FIGURES Jerome Bruner Photo credit: Bruner proposed that learners construct new ideas upon their previous knowledge. He said that learning is an active process. Bruner’s constructivist theory provides a framework for instruction based on the study of cognition. The idea that an individual progresses through different stages of intellect allows for a unique way of building information upon itself. Following this line, Bruner felt that the role of a teacher was to simply encourage the students to discover and challenge their own line of thinking using the Socratic method. Basically, the responsibility of learning is on the student. Teachers are tools to help students to advance and build their knowledge bank. Bruner’s idea of students continually building on what they know is regarded as spiral curriculum.
  4. 4. KEY FIGURES Lev Vygotsky Photo credit: Vygotsky discovered the idea of social cognition. He believed that children learn differently based on their social environment. This was mainly backed up with the scenario that children learn to recognize different sounds as language based on where they grow up. The idea of a zone of proximal development was proposed by Vygotsky and was defined as the difference between how an individual can learn on their own versus how they could learn when using a more advanced for of aid, like a teacher. The idea of blending together an advanced aid with personal ability is called collaborative learning. Vygotsky believed that teachers should discover the ability of each student and then challenge them accordingly so that that can build learning experiences from that point.
  5. 5. KEY FIGURES John Dewey Photo credit: Like Vygotsky, Dewey believed that learning was mainly fueled by social interaction. On perhaps a larger scale, Dewey believed that school was an extension of society and that each student should actively be involved. Students were expected to work collaboratively to push each other to learn in different ways. On the same brainwave as our other key figures, Dewey thought that learning was student directed with teachers merely being a guide or resource. Another of Dewey’s main lines of thought towards education was that students mainly learn by doing. He felt students should be free to interact and construct freely to advance their thought process. In fact, the idea of pragmatism stems from Dewey’s idea of this. Pragmatism being that theories only have value when they are proven, or applied.
  6. 6. KEY POINTS • Students learn best by doing a variety of activities and participating in active learning where students construct new knowledge based off what they already know. • Learning is influenced by social development therefore students work in groups where questions are welcomed. • Constructivism creates independent and motivated learners with critical thinking skills. Image:
  7. 7. CLASSROOM IMPLICATIONS • Constructivist theory is all about giving students the freedom to make connections on their own • Through numerous activities, students will be learning a very strongly integrated curriculum in different ways. • Today, with so much information readily available, it is easier for students to do just that • Teacher and student work together as partners and foster a mutual respect for each other
  8. 8. CLASSROOM IMPLICATIONS: TEACHERS • Transitioning to a constructivist mindset may take more adjustment for teachers than students • It does not dismiss the teacher’s responsibility to be informed of their subject but requires a combination of knowledge, common sense, strategy, and logic. • As an instructor, you relinquish some of your authority as dispenser of information and instead become more of a facilitator For your students’ own self-learning • Creating and/or sharing useful content to help enrich rather than a simple lecture might be considered more beneficial. Some examples might include: • Sharing useful links to videos and websites • Creating a classroom wiki and posting relevant class info • Doing a virtual tour or interactive Power Point activity
  9. 9. CLASSROOM IMPLICATIONS: STUDENTS • As a student in a constructivist classroom, more emphasis is put on your past experiences and how they relate to what you are learning currently • Collaboration and group work are highly valued, but individual growth is also important • Student familiarity with different technologies could be seen as an opportunity to use more of their own skills in order to acquire new knowledge • Students might be expected/encouraged to: • Form groups for discussion • Post to a classroom or student wiki • Use available web tools to create and share content • Elaborate on past experiences
  10. 10. WHAT COURTNEY THINKS Constructivism is a theory that should be used more often with younger children. It enhances their ability to create and think for themselves. In some ways, this can be helpful for Mathematics but it can also cause more problems than solve them. If a student does not have the proper prior knowledge this could cause the student to feel neglected and discourage them from learning the correct material. While constructivism can provide students with phenomenal learning skills, this could give students a lack of factual knowledge, which is also very important. I do believe I will use this theory in my classroom in the future but I will not be strict in my teaching. I believe using different theories is the best way to reach all students.
  11. 11. WHAT ASHLEY THINKS I agree with Constructivism that students learn best by doing hands on activities. I feel that in my Math classroom this can be achieved by doing labs with students that will require them to actively learn. For example a lab on probability of getting brown M&M’s, the students will be required to do a variety of tasks such as graph their findings, do arithmetic, and write a conclusion. I feel that the Constructivist theory is a sure way to keep students interested in learning in my class.
  12. 12. WHAT SARAH THINKS The idea of constructivism is extremely important, especially with the new wave of digital learners. In the past, it was mainly studied with children or young adults. I believe this upcoming generation will bring a whole new side of learning that will sync up with the idea of constructivism more than ever before. The ability to build and discover their own kinds of knowledge however they find the most useful will push students to learn in a constructive manner. I feel that students will find themselves more curious than previous generations are because creating and discovering will be so easy for them to do. Overall, I like the idea of constructivism because it places more responsibility on the student to personally crave a deeper sense of knowledge.
  13. 13. WHAT CHRIS THINKS • While much of what we discuss in relation to constructivist theory can seem radical or new, we should keep in mind that these ideas have been around for a long time in one form or another if not under the name of “Constructivism”. It basically encourages more student participation and hands on learning and doesn’t have to be a huge shift for the educator. Constructivism is just a theory, and as such a teacher can adapt the parts they feel work for them and their particular subject.
  14. 14. CREDITS • • • • • ts/Instruction/97-07.htm • • Dell’s official Flickr page • am/