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(Hint: the light bulb is a metaphor for a good idea) The current system of education in the United States, based upon a desire for change from what too many experts considered an antiquated system, though it produced genuine and positive results for the general population of the nation, has collapsed in failure. Students, perceived as victims of the previous system by e xperts and ideologues in education, sociology, and psychology, now emerge from the present one all but ignorant of their culture, of their place in it, and of the skills necessary to take part in it. Whether this outcome resulted from intelligent des ign or incompetence remains arguable, though as for that, I believe it came from bot h. The following overview by On Purpose Associates and http://www.funderstanding. com provides a glimpse into the reason this failure happened. Constructivism Definition Constructivism is a philosophy of learning founded on the premise that, by refle cting on our experiences, we construct our own understanding of the world we live in. Eac h of us generates our own rules and mental models, which we use to make sense of our experiences. Learning, therefore, is simply the process of adjusting our mental models to accommodate new experiences. Discussion There are several guiding principles of constructivism: 1. Learning is a search for meaning. Therefore, learning must start with the issues around which students are actively trying to construct meaning. 2. Meaning requires understanding wholes as well as parts. And parts must be understood in the context of wholes. Therefore, the learning process focuses on primary concepts, not isolated facts. 3. In order to teach well, we must understand the mental models that students use t o perceive the world and the assumptions they make to support those models. 4. The purpose of learning is for an individual to construct his or her own meaning , not just memorize the right answers and regurgitate someone else s meaning. Since education is inherently interdisciplinary, the only valuable way to measur e learning is to make the assessment part of the learning process, ensuring it provides students with information on the quality of their learning. How Constructivism Impacts Learning 1
Curriculum Constructivism calls for the elimination of a standardized curriculum. Instead, it promotes using curricula customized to the students prior knowledge. Also, it emphasizes hands-on problem solving. Instruction Under the theory of constructivism, educators focus on making connecti ons between facts and fostering new understanding in students. Instructors tailor th eir teaching strategies to student responses and encourage students to analyze, inte rpret, and predict information. Teachers also rely heavily on open-ended questions and prom ote extensive dialogue among students. Assessment Constructivism calls for the elimination of grades and standardized tes ting. Instead, assessment becomes part of the learning process so that students play a larger role in judging their own progress. Reading Jacqueline and Martin Brooks, The Case for Constructivist Classrooms. Behaviorism Definition Behaviorism is a theory of animal and human learning that only focuses on object ively observable behaviors and discounts mental activities. Behavior theorists define learning as nothing more than the acquisition of new behavior. Discussion Experiments by behaviorists identify conditioning as a universal learning proces s. There are two different types of conditioning, each yielding a different behavioral pa ttern: 1. Classic conditioning occurs when a natural reflex responds to a stimulus. The most popular example is Pavlov s observation that dogs salivate when they eat or even see food. Essentially, animals and people are biologically wired so that a certain stimulus will produce a specific response. 2. Behavioral or operant conditioning occurs when a response to a stimulus is reinforced. Basically, operant conditioning is a simple feedback system: If a reward or reinforcement follows the response to a stimulus, then the response becomes more probable in the future. For example, leading behaviorist B.F. Skinner used reinforcement techniques to teach pigeons to dance and bowl a ball in a mini-alley. There have been many criticisms of behaviorism, including the following: 2
Phillips & Jonas F. Reading D. moving from a few innate reflexes such as crying and sucking to highly complex mental activities. schemes. or networked concepts for understanding and responding to physical experiences within his or her environment. Piaget further attested that a child s cognitive structure increases in sophistication with development. Chapter 3.2 years old) The child. Behaviorism often is use d by teachers. How Behaviorism Impacts Learning This theory is relatively simple to understand because it relies only on observa ble behavior and describes several universal laws of behavior. 3. who reward or punish student behaviors. through physical interaction with his or her environment. Piaget Definition Swiss biologist and psychologist Jean Piaget (1896-1980) is renowned for constru cting a highly influential model of child development and learning. For instance. since it disregards the activities of the mind. Behaviorism does not account for all kinds of learning. The four stages are: 1. Soltis. This is the stage where a child does not know that physical objects remai n . Its positive and nega tive reinforcement techniques can be very effective both in animals. The content on this page was written by On Purpose Associates. Teachers C ollege Press. Reserach has shown that animals adapt their reinforced patterns to new information. 2.1. and in treatments for human disorders such as autism and antisocial behavior. men tal maps. Piaget s theory is bas ed on the idea that the developing child builds cognitive structures in other words. Perspectives on Learning. Discussion Piaget s theory identifies four developmental stages and the processes by which ch ildren progress through them. Behaviorism does not explain some learning such as the recognition of new language patterns by young children for which there is no reinforcement mechanism. builds a set of concepts about reality and how it works. Sensorimotor stage (birth . a rat can shift its behavior to respond to changes in the layout of a maze it had previously mastered through reinforcements.C.
in existence even when out of sight (object permanance). 3 .
Instruction Teachers must emphasize the critical role that experiences or interactio ns with the surrounding environment play in student learning. the child s cognitive structures are like those of an adult and include conceptual reasoning. If the experience is different or new. This theory is still young and is undergoing rapid. the child experiences his or her environment using whatever mental maps he or she has constructed so far. 3. play in establishing cognitive structures. Concrete operations (ages 7-11) As physical experience accumulates.2. Piaget outlined several principles for building cognitive structures. Some of the key findings of neuroscience are: . During all development stages. controversial development. perception. Abstract problem solving is also possible at this stage. such as the permanence of objects. and learning. not just with objects. This way. If the experience is a repeated one. creating logical structures that explain his or her phy sical experiences. instructor s have to take into account the role that fundamental concepts. For example. the brain. Discussion The nervous system and the brain are the physical foundation of the human learni ng process. it f its easily or is assimilated into the child s cognitive structure so that he or she maintains ment al equilibrium. a nd alters his or her cognitive structure to accommodate the new conditions. Neuroscience links our observations about cognitive behavior with the a ctual physical processes that support such behavior. Formal operations (beginning at ages 11-15) By this point. arithmetic equations can be solved with numbers. For exampl e. the child erects more and more adequate cognitive structures. Preoperational stage (ages 2-7) The child is not yet able to conceptualize abstractly and needs concrete physical situations. the child starts to conceptualize. How Piaget s Theory Impacts Learning Curriculum Educators must plan a developmentally appropriate curriculum that enhances their students logical and conceptual growth. Neuroscience Definition Neuroscience is the study of the human nervous system. the child loses equilibrium. memory. and the biolog ical basis of consciousness. 4.
Our brain actually contains three brains: the l ower or reptilian brain that controls basic sensory motor functions.The brain has a triad structure. and biorhythms. memory. reasoning. and the neocortex or thinking br ain that controls cognition. and higher intelligence. 4 . language. the mammalian or li mbic brain that controls emotions.
the brain is be tter described as a self-organizing system. throughout our lifetime. they organize a curriculum around real experiences and integrated. Quantum Learning. or Education . however. This is how memory develops. Neuroscience proponents advocate continued learning and intellectual development throughout adulthood. Mental concentration and ef fort alters the physical structure of the brain. 1992. learning will occu r. and redundant. overlapping. Instead. Bright Air. There are about 10 billion neurons in the brain and a bout 1. Brilliant Fire: On the Matter of the Mind. Basic Boo ks. Discussion People often say that everyone can learn. Yet the reality is that everyone does learn. As we use the brain. Traditional schooling. Every person is born with a brain that functions as an immensely powerful proces sor. Dell Trade. ignorin g. Robert Sylwester.000 trillion connections. Making Connections: Teaching and the Human Brain. The structure of the brain s neuron connections is lo ose. What the Biology of the Brain Tells Us About Learning. whole ideas. It s impossible for such a system to function like a linear or parallel-processing computer. As lon g as the brain is not prohibited from fulfilling its normal processes. Leadership.The brain is not a computer. Our nerve cells (neurons) are connec ted by branches called dendrites. they focus on instruction that prom otes complex thinking and the growth of the brain. Renate and Geoffrey Caine. we strengthen certain patterns of connecti on. The possible combinations of connections is about ten to t he onemillionth power. Reading Gerald Edelman. often inhibits learning by discouraging. Plus. webbed. How Neuroscience Impacts Education When educators take neuroscience into account. December. 1993. Brain-based Learning Definition This learning theory is based on the structure and function of the brain. making each connection easier to create next time. The brain changes with use. 1992. Chapter 2. Bobbi Deporter. flexible.
punishing the brain s natural learning processes. The core principles of brain-based learning state that: 5 .
1. The brain is a parallel processor, meaning it can perform several activities at once, like tasting and smelling. 2. Learning engages the whole physiology. 3. The search for meaning is innate. 4. The search for meaning comes through patterning. 5. Emotions are critical to patterning. 6. The brain processes wholes and parts simultaneously. 7. Learning involves both focused attention and peripheral perception. 8. Learning involves both conscious and unconscious processes. 9. We have two types of memory: spatial and rote. 10. We understand best when facts are embedded in natural, spatial memory. 11. Learning is enhanced by challenge and inhibited by threat. 12. Each brain is unique. The three instructional techniques associated with brain-based learning are: 1. Orchestrated immersion Creating learning environments that fully immerse students in an educational experience 2. Relaxed alertness Trying to eliminate fear in learners, while maintaining a highly challenging environment 3. Active processing Allowing the learner to consolidate and internalize information by actively processing it How Brain-Based Learning Impacts Education Curriculum Teachers must design learning around student interests and make learnin g contextual. Instruction Educators let students learn in teams and use peripheral learning. Tea chers structure learning around real problems, encouraging students to also learn in s ettings outside the classroom and the school building. Assessment Since all students are learning, their assessment should allow them to understand their own learning styles and preferences. This way, students monitor and enhance their own learning process. What Brain-Based Learning Suggests How the brain works has a significant impact on what kinds of learning activitie s are most effective. Educators need to help students have appropriate experiences and capitalize on those experiences. As Renate Caine illustrates on p. 113 of her bo ok Making
Connections, three interactive elements are essential to this process: Teachers must immerse learners in complex, interactive experiences that are both rich and real. One excellent example is immersing students in a foreign culture to 6
teach them a second language. Educators must take advantage of the brain s ability to parallel process. Students must have a personally meaningful challenge. Such challenges stimulate a student s mind to the desired state of alertness. In order for a student to gain insight about a problem, there must be intensive analysis of the different ways to approach it, and about learning in general. Th is is what s known as the active processing of experience. A few other tenets of brain-based learning include: Feedback is best when it comes from reality, rather than from an authority figur e. People learn best when solving realistic problems. The big picture can t be separated from the details. Because every brain is different, educators should allow learners to customize t heir own environments. The best problem solvers are those that laugh! Designers of educational tools must be artistic in their creation of brain-frien dly environments. Instructors need to realize that the best way to learn is not thro ugh lecture, but by participation in realistic environments that let learners try new things safely. Reading Renate and Geoffrey Caine, Making Connections: Teaching and the Human Brain. Leslie Hart, Human Brain, Human Learning. Learning Styles Definition This approach to learning emphasizes the fact that individuals perceive and proc ess information in very different ways. The learning styles theory implies that how much individuals learn has more to do with whether the educational experience is gear ed toward their particular style of learning than whether or not they are smart. In f act, educators should not ask, Is this student smart? but rather How is this student sma rt? Discussion The concept of learning styles is rooted in the classification of psychological types. The learning styles theory is based on research demonstrating that, as the result of heredity, upbringing, and current environmental demands, different individuals have a tend ency to
Reflective processors make sense of an experience by reflecting on and thinking about it. by doing. Gordon Lawrence. People Types and Tiger Stripes: A Practical Guide to Learning S tyles. however. David Kolb. instruction. reflection. Carl Jung. such as sound. and as sessment nearly as much. using various combinations of experience. sensing. How the Learning Styles Theory Impacts Education Curriculum Educators must place emphasis on intuition. Abstract perceivers. conceptua lization. sensing. Traditional schooling tends to favor abstract perceiving and reflective processi ng. Experiential Learning: Experience as the Source of Learning and Development. Instruction Teachers should design their instruction methods to connect with all f our learning styles. Other kinds of learning aren t rewarded and reflected in curriculum. observation. and eve n talking. and imagination. acting. take in information through analysis. Reading Bernice McCarthy. and feeling. Psychological Types. Assessment Teachers should employ a variety of assessment techniques. Active and reflective processors Active processors make sense of an experience by immediately using the new information. music. 2. and thinking. in addition to the traditional skills of analysis. experience. and sequ ential problem solving. Instructors can introduce a wide variety of experiential el ements into the classroom. Concrete and abstract perceivers Concrete perceivers absorb information through direct experience. and experimentation.both perceive and process information differently. visuals. feeling. focusing on the development of whole brain capacity and each of the different learning styles. reason. movement. Multiple Intelligences Definition 8 . The different ways of doing s o are generally classified as: 1. The 4-MAT System: Teaching to Learning Styles with Right/Left Mode Techniques.
as well as the use of numbers and the recognition of abstract pattern s 3. Interpersonal The capacity for person-to-person communications and relationships 7. musical performance. Visual-Spatial The ability to visualize objects and spatial dimensions. and physical education. inner states of being. communication. story telling. he ident ifies the following seven: 1. self-awareness. including role playing. sug gests there are at least seven ways that people have of perceiving and understanding t he world. Instruction Gardner advocates instructional methods that appeal to all the intelli gences. Logical-Mathematical The capacity for inductive and deductive thinking and reasoning. and create internal images and pictures 4. Discussion Gardner defines an intelligence as a group of abilities that: Is somewhat autonomous from other human capacities Has a core set of information-processing operations Has a distinct history in the stages of development we each pass through Has plausible roots in evolutionary history While Gardner suggests his list of intelligences may not be exhaustive. a set of s kills allowing individuals to find and resolve genuine problems they face. visualization. Musical-Rhythmic The ability to recognize tonal patterns and sounds. reflection. Verbal-Linguistic The ability to use words and language 2. developed by psychologist Howard Gardner.This theory of human intelligence. cooperative learning. and so on. Gardner labels each of these ways a distinct intelligence in other words. as well as a sensitivity to rhythms and beats 6. Assessment This theory calls for assessment methods that take into account the div ersity . and awareness How Multiple Intelligences Impact Learning Curriculum Traditional schooling heavily favors the verbal-linguistic and logicalmathematical intelligences. Body-Kinesthetic The wisdom of the body and the ability to control physical motion 5. Intrapersonal The spiritual. self-reflection. Gardner suggests a more balanced curriculum that incorporates the arts.
9 . as well as self-assessment tools that help students understand their intelligences.of intelligences.
It also suggests that each o f us prefers one mode over the other. however. Rig ht-brained subjects. and creativity. Discussion Experimentation has shown that the two different sides. and accuracy. In general. How Right-Brain vs. Left Brain Definition This theory of the structure and functions of the mind suggests that the two dif ferent sides of the brain control two different modes of thinking. Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences. Leftbrain scholastic subjects focus on logical thinking. while downplaying the right-brain on es.Reading Howard Gardner. They can incre ase their 10 . Left-Brain Thinking Impacts Learning Curriculum In order to be more whole-brained in their orientation. of the b rain are responsible for different manners of thinking. teachers should use instruction techniques that connect with both sides of the brain. Some. sch ools tend to favor left-brain modes of thinking. or hemispheres. schools need to give equal weight to the arts. feeling. Right Brain vs. on the other hand. creativity. Instruction To foster a more whole-brained scholastic experience. The following table illustrates t he differences between left-brain and right-brain thinking: Left Brain Right Brain Logical Random Sequential Intuitive Rational Holistic Analytical Synthesizing Objective Subjective Looks at parts Looks at wholes Most individuals have a distinct preference for one of these styles of thinking. focus on aesthetics. are more whole-brained and equally adept at both modes. and the skills of imagination and syn thesis. analysis.
schools are only powerfu l learning environments for students whose social communities coincide with that s chool. our identity and our relationship to the group changes. CA. Reading Bernice McCarthy. Communities of Practice Definition This approach views learning as an act of membership in a community of practice. visuals. The 4-MAT System: Teaching to Learning Styles with Right/Left Mode Techniques. These are called communities of practice. calculation.classroom s right-brain learning activities by incorporating more patterning. role playing. Therefore. beliefs. a spin-off of the Xerox Corporation in Palo Alto. The Institute pu rsues a cross-disciplinary approach to learning research. analogies. Knowledge is integrated in the life of communities that share values. educa tors must develop new forms of assessment that honor right-brained talents and skills . and movement into their reading. he theory seeks to understand both the structure of communities and how learning oc curs in them. Basic Elements The communities of practice concept was pioneered by the Institute for Research on Learning. Real knowled ge is integrated in the doing. and traditional educators. Communities of practi ce is based on the following assumptions: Learning is fundamentally a social phenomenon. People organize their learning ar ound the social communities to which they belong. social relations. meta phors. As we change our learning. l anguages. and expertise of these communities. organizational anthropologists.Because learning is intertwined with community membership. it is wha t lets us belong to and adjust our status in the group. Assessment For a more accurate whole-brained evaluation of student learning. and analytical activities. involving cognitive scientists . and ways of doing things. T . The processes of learning and membership in a community of practice are inseparable.
we learn. It is not possible to know without doing . By doing. 11 .Knowledge is inseparable from practice.
service learning. and so on. Lead teachers. Instead.Empowerment or the ability to contribute to a community creates the potential for learning. Discussion Responding to complaints that today s students are unmotivated. on the other hand. they only use grades as temporary indicators of what has and hasn t been learned.Circumstances in which we engage in real action that has consequences f or both us and our community create the most powerful learning environments. avoid coercion completely. in real learning situations. A New Learning Agenda: Putting People First (unpublished pamphlet). Glasser attests that all living creatures control their behavior to maximize their need satisfaction. Boss teachers use rewards and punishment to coerce students to comply with rules and complete required assignments. Instead. rather than a reward. Lead teacher . He shows how high percentages of students recognize that the work they do even when t heir teachers praise them is such low-level work. How Communities of Practice Impacts Education This approach to learning suggests teachers understand their students communities of practice and acknowledge the learning students do in such communities. freedom. Control Theory Definition This theory of motivation proposed by William Glasser contends that behavior is never caused by a response to an outside stimulus. Plus. the control theory states that behavior is inspired by what a person wants most at any given time: survival. if students are not motivated to do their schoolwork. or any other basic human need. Glasser calls this leaning on your shovel work. Reading Institute for Research on Learning. Plus. lo ve. The communities of practice theory also suggests educators structure learning opport unities that embed knowledge in both work practices and social relations for example. it s because they v iew schoolwork as irrelevant to their basic human needs. Accor ding to Glasser. apprenticeships. power. they make the intrinsic rewards of doing the work clear to their students. educa tors should create opportunities for students to solve real problems with adults. correlating any pro posed assignments to the students basic needs. school-based learning.
s will 12 .
fight to protect highly engaged. Teachers grade students using an ab solute standard. Courses for which a student doesn t earn a good gra de are not recorded on that student s transcript. an example of vicarious punishment. which carries the class through whatever relatively meaningless tasks might be necessary to satisfy offi cial requirements. Observational Learning Definition Observational learning. deeply motivated students who are doing quality w ork from having to fulfill meaningless requirements. occurs when an obser ver s behavior changes after viewing the behavior of a model. The observer will react to the way the model is treated and mimic the model s behavior. Assessment Instructors only give good grades those that certify quality work to satisfy students need for power. or popularity that the observer finds attractive or desirable. How the Control Theory Impacts Learning Curriculum Teachers must negotiate both content and method with students. When the model is punished. . Students basic needs literally help shape how and what they are taught. Lead teachers make sure that all assignments meet some de gree of their students need satisfaction. also called social learning theory. 3. active learning techniques that enhance the power of the learners. The Quality School. the observer is more likely to reproduce the rewarded behavior. 1990. rather than a relative curve. An observer s behavior can be affected by the positive or negative consequences called vicarious reinforcement o r vicarious punishment of a model s behavior. Reading William Glasser. Instruction Teachers rely on cooperative. Discussion There are several guiding principles behind observational learning. power. or social le arning theory: 1. When the model s behavior is rewarded. This secures student loyalty. good looks. The observer will imitate the model s behavior if the model possesses characteristics things such as talent. Harper & Row. intelligence. the observer is less likely to reproduce the same behavior . 2.
the observer can acquire the 13 . Through observation.A distinction exists between an observer s acquiring a behavior and performing a behavior.
5. beliefs. Likewise. This process depends on the observer s ability to code or structure the information in an easily remembered form or to mentally or physically rehearse the model s actions. A person s behavior can affect his feelings about himself and his attitudes and beliefs abo ut others. o Production: Observers must be physically and/intellectually capable of producing the act. either to the model or directly to the observer. Environment also affects behavior: what a person observes can powerfully influence what he does. attitudes. but it is quite another to go home and repeat those acts. The presence of reinforcement or punishment. The observer may then later. 4. such as the observer s expectations or level of emotional arousal. since much of learni ng happens within important social and environmental contexts. personality. and so on influence both his o r her behavior and environment. and the environment. and books. retention. But a person s behavior also contributes to his environment. How Observational Learning Impacts Learning: Curriculum Students must get a chance to observe and model the behavior that lead s to a positive reinforcement. physical characteristics. The relationship between these elements is called reciprocal determinism. becomes most important in this process. But sometimes. Learning by observation involves four separate processes: attention. much of what a person knows comes from environmental resources such as television. o Attention: Observers cannot learn unless they pay attention to what s happening around them. production and motivation control the performance.behavior without performing it. however. o Retention: Observers must not only recognize the observed behavior but also remember it at some later time. observers will perform the act only if they have some motivation or reason to do so. 14 . and by characteristics of the observer. display the behavior. 6. the person s behavior. Attention and retention account for acquisition or learning of a model s behavior. It is one thing to carefully watch a circus juggler. reproducing the model s actions may involve skills the observer has not yet acquired. This process is influenced by characteristics of the model. These influences are reciprocal. in situations where there is an incentive to do so. Human development reflects the complex interaction of the person. Instruction Educators must encourage collaborative learning. production and motivation. o Motivation: In general. A person s cognitive abilities. parents. In many cases the observer possesses the necessary responses. such as how much one likes or identifies with the model.
6. and every human child develops in the context of a culture. A difference exists between what child can do on her own and what the child can do with help. the child s own language comes to serve as her primary tool of intellectual adaptation. but gradually this responsibility transfers to the child. (1986). This happens primarily through language. the person interacting with child assumes most of the responsibility for guiding the problem solving. 3. children can use internal language to direct their own behavior. Englewood Cliffs. Culture makes two sorts of contributions to a child s intellectual development. Eventually. usually a parent or teacher but sometimes a sibling or peer. As learning progresses. Internalization refers to the process of learning and thereby internalizing a rich body of knowledge and tools of thought that first exist outside the child. 5. what Vygotskians call the tools of intellectual adaptation. Reading Bandura. Cognitive development results from a dialectical process whereby a child learns through problem-solving experiences shared with someone else.Assessment A learned behavior often cannot be performed unless there is the right environment for it. 2. Language is a primary form of interaction through which adults transmit to the child the rich body of knowledge that exists in the culture. assessment may not be accurate. their knowledge. that is. . Therefore. Otherwise. Humans are the only species to have created culture. the surrounding culture provides a child with the processes or means of their thinking. 4. through culture children acquire much of the content of thei r thinking. NJ: Prentice Hall. 7. Vygotskians call this difference the zone of proximal development. a child s learning development is affected in ways large and small by the culture including the cultu re of family environment in which he or she is enmeshed. Second. according to the social cognition le arning model. Initially. Educators must provide the incentive and the supportive envi ronment for the behavior to happen. Discussion 1. In short. Social foundations of thought and action: A social cognitive theory. Vygotsky and Social Cognition Definition The social cognition learning model asserts that culture is the prime determinan t of individual development. culture teaches children both what to think and how to think. A. First.
Since much of what a child learns comes form the culture around her and much of the child s problem solving is mediated through an adult s help. it is wrong to 15 .8.
What children can do on their own is their level of actual developm ent and what they can do with help is their level of potential development. such as parents and mor e competent peers. MA: MIT Press. Cambridge. Assessment Assessment methods must take into account the zone of proximal development. Two children might have the same level of actual development. With this in mind.focus on a child in isolation. (1978). Thought and language. L. children can often perform tasks that the y are incapable of completing on their own. curricula should be desi gned to emphasize interaction between learners and learning tasks.S. one might be able to solve many more problems than the other. Scaffolding not only produces immedi ate results. This is an introduction to some of the basic concepts ofVygotskyean theory (cult urallymediated identity) by Trish Nicholl: Beyond the Individual-Social Antimony in Discussions of Piaget and Vygotsky . scaffolding where the adu lt continually adjusts the level of his or her help in response to the child s level of performance is an effective form of teaching. Mind in Society: The development of higher psychological processes. but given the appropriate help from a n adult. (1962). Instruction With appropriate adult help. (Original work published 1934) Vygotsky. This paper gives an accessible overview of the main thrust of Vygotsky s general developmental framework and offers a contrast to the Piagetian approach. L. but also instills the skills necessary for independent problem solving in the future. Assessment methods must target both the level of actual development and the level of potential developme nt. Interactions with surrounding culture and social agents. A paper by James Wertsch and Michael Cole titled The role of culture in Vygotskye aninformed psychology . Cambridge. Such focus does not reveal the processes by which children acquire new skills. 9.S. contribute significantly to a child s intellectual development. Reading Vygotsky. MA: Harvard University Press. How Vygotsky Impacts Learning: Curriculum Since children learn much through interaction.
Wertsch. University of California. San Diego James V.Michael Cole. Louis Ever since the publication of the first translation of Vygotsky's Thought and Language (reborn as Thinking and Speech 25 years later) there has been an ongoin g 16 . St. Washington University.
the role of mediation of action through artifacts. Vygotsky. There are (at least) two difficulties with this story.. . on the develop ment of mind. Standard discussions of the difference between Vygotsky and Piaget place a cruci al difference in the proximal locus of cognitive development. contrary to another stereotype. In the b rief space available. By contrast. It is possible to find plenty of places where he says that both individual and social are impor tant. the Vygotskian claim is said to be that understanding is social in origin. 1932.. we will suggest that by and large commentators on the differences betwe en these two thinkers have placed too narrow an emphasis on their ideas about the primacy of individual psychogenesis versus sociogenesis of mind while neglecting what we be lieve is a cardinal difference between them: their views concerning the importance of culture.. individual children construct knowledge through their actions on the world: to understand is to invent. This insistence is reflected in passages such as the following. to consider it in its comp leteness . There are only relations . 114) Second. 1970. in particular.. But we have seen that where the child's egocentric speech is linked to his pract ical . and the combinations formed by them. we have no interest in arguing the virtues of one man's ideas over th e other. p. First of all. There are no more such things as societies qua beings than there are isolated in dividuals. Piaget did not deny the co-equal role of the social world in the construction of knowledge.debate about the relationship between the ideas of Vygotsky and Piaget. Instead. 360). ironically.. in principl e. p. there is no longer any need to choose between the primacy of the social or th at of the intellect: collective intellect is the social equilibrium resulting from the int erplay of the operations that enter into all cooperation (Piaget. cannot be taken as permanent substances (Piaget.. Vygotsky wrote as part of a review and critique of Piaget's a ccount of egocentric speech: Activity and practice: these are the new concepts that have allowed us to consid er the function of egocentric speech from a new perspective. for Piaget. According to the cano nical story. insisted on the centrality of the active construction of knowledge. which. always incomp lete.
what gets left out of such discussions. 1993). Vygotsky's strong assumptions about the active individual are reflected in his f ocus on practices such as speaking and thinking and are the focus of an extended treatme nt in Zinchenko (1985). things really do operate on his mi nd and influence it.constructionism the basis of th eorizing: there is both an active child and an active environment (Valsiner. what we have in mind is not reality as it is passively reflected in perception or abstractly cognized. One reaction to the realization of this complementarity of act ive individual and active environment is to make co. where it is linked to his thinking.activity. However. By the word things. pp. we mean reality. Wozniak . 78-79). We me an reality as it is encountered in practice (1987. We certainly subscribe to that. However. is the essential presence of a third factor in the process of 17 . and the element we want to emphasize. 1993.
The special quality of the human environment is that it is suffused with the achievements of prior generations in reified (and to this extent materialized) form. all sorts of conventional signs. For example.co. we live from birth to death in a world of persons and things which is in lar ge measure what it is because of what has been done and transmitted from previous human act ivities. 39). in the year before his death he went so far as to write that the central fact about our psychology is the fact of mediation (1982. the me dium within which the two active parties to development interact. maps. a set that included 'various systems for counting.. schemes.. 1929). In their early writing on this subject. 1912. but it became increasingly important and well formulated in the last decade of his life (Minic k. p. Language was the form of mediation that preoccupied Vygotsky above all others. 1932. or psychological tools. and so on' (1981. John Dewey wrote that: . experience is treated as if it were something which g oes on exclusively inside an individual's body and mind. This view was always present in Vygotsky's writings. b ut when speaking of signs. The Primacy of Cultural Mediation Cultural-historical psychology as formulated by scholars representing many natio nal traditions begins from the assumption that there is an intimate connection betwe en the special environment that human beings inhabit and the fundamental. It ought not to be necessary t o say that experience does not occur in a vacuum. 1938/1963. 1987).construction: the accumulated products of prior generations. and mechanical drawings. mn emonic techniques. There are sources outside an individual w hich give rise to experience (Dewey. works of art. algebraic symbol systems. This notion can be traced back to at lea st Hegel and Marx (1845/1947) and is found in the writings of cultural-historical psychol ogists from many national traditions (Dewey. 1 37). 166). culture. distinguishin g. 1938. diagrams. Stern. Durkheim. writing. the Russian cultural-historical psycholo gists coupled a focus on the cultural medium with the assumption that the special mental quali ty of human beings is their need and ability to mediate their actions through artifact s and to arrange for the rediscovery and appropriation of these forms of mediation by sub sequent generations. qualities of human psychological processes. p. 1916/1990). Luri a. p. 1928. When this fact is ignored. Indeed. . he had a more extensive set of mediational means in mind. Vygotsky. Leontiev.
for further discussion). they involve not a 'direct' action on t he world. 1996. one that takes a bit of material matter used previously and incorporates it as an aspect of action. 1991. culturally mediated. Higher mental fun ctions are. In so far as that matter has itself been shaped by pr ior human 18 . by definition. but an indirect action.In this view. the development of mind is the interweaving of biological development of the human body and the appropriation of the cultural/ideal/materi al heritage which exists in the present to coordinate people with each other and th e physical world (See Cole. Wertsch. then.
e. duration. In a sense. there is no way not to be socioculturally situated when carryi ng out an action. they fundamentally shape and transform them. This follows from the fact that the artifacts which enter into human psychological functions are themselves culturally. Taking 'action in context' as the unit of psychological analysis requires a relational interpretation of mind. our grandparents told us. Conversely there is no tool that is adequate to all tasks. it re-creates and reorganizes the whole structure o f behavior just as a technical tool re-creates the whole structure of labor operations) (19 81. pp. et c. and there is no universally appropriate form of cultural mediation. historically. (b) abolishes and makes unnecessary several natural processes. In such a view artifacts clearly do not serve simply to facilitate mental proces ses that would otherwise exist. a rtifacts are recognized as transforming mental functioning in fundamental ways. Instead. objects and contexts arise together as part of a single bio-socialcultural process of development. a nd alters the course and individual features (the intensity. and institutionally situ ated and context specific. sequence.139140). when silence is golden and there are times we all know when words fail us. First. then. Fourth is the implication that mind is no longer to be located entirely inside t he head. historically. several implications come along with it. There are times. culturally. . whose work is accomplished by the tool. A third implication of making cultural mediation central to mind and mental deve lopment is that the meaning of an action and of a context are not specifiable independen t of each other.practice (e. and to a large extent remain.. In Vygotsky's view: The inclusion of a tool in the process of behavior (a) introduces several new fu nctions connected with the use of the given tool and with its control. replac ing some functions with others (i. it is an artifact). Even language. A second implication of this general position is that all psychological function s begin. and institution ally situated.) of all the mental processes that enter into the composition of the instrumental act.g. current action benefits from the mental work that produced the particular form of that matter. When one adopts this position. the 'tool of tools' is no exception to this rule..
'there are lots of message pathways outside the skin.1 Gregory Bateson (1972) highlighted this aspect of culturally mediated action as involving cycles of transformations between 'inside' and 'outside. the cultural mediational artifacts. 458). and the culturally structured social and natural environments of which persons are a part. He then proposed the following thought experiment: 19 .higher psychological functions are transactions that include the biological indi vidual.' Bateson w rote.' 'Obviously. and these and the messages which they carry must be included as a part of the mental system whenever they are relevant .' (p.
Soci ety is the bearer of the cultural heritage without which the development of mind is impossi ble. 459)? In short. whose work is accomplished by the tool' (p. because what we call mind works through artifacts it cannot be uncondi tionally bounded by the head nor even by the body. like Piaget. but must be seen as distributed in the artifacts which are woven together and which weave together individual human actions in co ncert with and as a part of the permeable. events of life. and an interpretive frame. Where do I star t? Is my mental system bounded at the hand of the stick? Is it bounded by my skin? Does i t start halfway up the stick? Does it start at the tip of the stick (p. a cultura l medium. the relationship betwee n the individual and the social is necessarily relational. by placing cultura l mediation at the center of adult cognition and the process of cognitive development.139). For Vygotsky. The earlier quote from Vygotsky on the inclusion of a tool in the process of beh avior entails a similar view. The niche is simultaneously a socio-physical location. and I use a stick.Suppose I am a blind man. I go tap. Hence the process might be 'one that abolishes and makes unnecessary several nat ural processes. . changing. For Vygotsky and cultural-historical theorists more gener ally. Social Origins With these considerations as background. he was arguing that by incorporating new a rtifacts into our action we transform the distribution of what is done within and beyond the skin. tap. Specifically. Children in human developmental niches are both natur al and cultural entities at the start of post-natal development. tap. we can now return to the question of so cial origins and the relation of Vygotsky's approach to Piaget's in the hopes of clar ifying somewhat the issues involved. However. socia l origins take on a special importance in Vygotsky's theories that is less symmetrical tha n Piaget's notion of social equilibration as 'resulting from the interplay of the operation s that enter into all cooperation'. the nature of that niche (including the forms of social relationships it require s and affords) embody not only the adult's cultural past but presuppositions about the child's future as well. the social world does have primacy over the individual in a very special sense. When parents and other members of the community create what Sara Harkness and Charles Super (1986) have aptly referred to as a developmental niche for the new comer.
of course. Vygotsky explicated the first of these two claims in hisgeneral ge netic law of cultural development according to which interpersonal/inter-mental processes are the 20 . This is not to say that the process of becoming socialized can be reduced to sim ple learning or that there is no room for active construction in it. At birth the cultura l past is. h owever. It is to say. ignorant of the meanings of the artifacts they encounte r and the ways in which those artifacts (including words of the language as well as diaper s. and pacifiers) are to be incorporated into action. literally. thrust upon them.Newborns are. that social processes give rise to individual processes and that both are essentially mediated by artifacts. mobiles.
In fact the very boundary between social and i ndividual. are possible. a boundary that has defined much of our thinking in psychology. p. comes into quest ion in Vygotsky's writings. we must certainly speak about issues such as c ontext. This same set of considerations explains why the idea of a zone of proximal deve lopment plays such a central role in Vygotsky's account of development. but an essential aspect of this process is that they must be able to use words and other artifacts in ways that extend beyond their current understanding of th em. An essentia l aspect of this interaction is that less capable participants can participate in forms o f interaction that are beyond their competence when acting alone. or at leas . Of course tutees operate within constraints provided in part by the more capable participants. Just as the mind does not stop with the skin in his view. it is a unit of verbal thinking' (1987.47) is quite telling in this connection. the existing level of intramental functioning. processes on both the inter-mental and the intra-mental plan es are necessarily mediated by cultural artifacts. as well as vice versa. (This is a point emphasized by Cazden (1981) when she wrote of performance before competence in referring to mechanisms of language and cognitive development). thereby coordinating with possible future forms of action. this zone is defined as the distance between the level of actu al development and the more advanced level of potential development that comes into existence in interaction between more and less capable participants. there is a n essential sense in which intermental functioning and the benefits it offers a tutee in the zone of proximal development would not be available if one could not perform. and so forth. His comment that word meaning is 'bo th [speech and thinking] at one and the same time. Of course this is not to say that useful boundaries cannot be drawn as we pursue our inquiry but it is to question some o f the implicit assumptions we usually make about where mind located and what its natur e is. t he relationship between individual and social environment is much more dynamic than the overly simple division we so often tacitly assume.precursors and necessary condition for the emergence of individual/intra-mental (psychological) processes. If we ask what makes such intermental functioning possible. In Vygotsky's view. In Vygotsky's no w familiar account. However. It is because the same basic mediatio nal means is used on the social and individual planes that transition from the former to the latter.
.t participate in performances. and this is a p oint that Vygotsky took into account in a thoroughgoing manner. et passim). Lave & Wenger. or unmediated process. that go beyond one's current level of competence. social interaction is not a direct. Cole & Engestro m. I n this sense. Hutchins. 1993. . I nstead. Clark (in press) has argued 21 . including language. it takes place in an artifact-saturated medium. transparent. Mind is distributed It is interesting to note that Vygotsky's argument on these issues bears a strik ing similarity to the recent movement in cognitive science associated with the notion ofdistrib uted cognition and situated learning (Bechtel. Central to this line of thought is the effort to create an external symbol system approach that 'moves formal symbols . in press. Clark. out of the head and locate them in the environment of the system'. 1995. 1991. 1993.
and consequently may be more appropriately characterized as being diff erent. 3. and the artificial neural network. References Bateson. In short. Cole. However. such artifacts play a central role in elaborating an account of what and where mind is. W. Bechtel. (in press) The world. Cole. For Vygotsky.s project. G. Y. we believe that discussions of these two figures' accounts o f mind and its boundaries are not well served by overly rehearsed debates about the pri macy of the individual or the social. (1972) Steps to an ecology of mind: A revolutionary approach to man' s understanding of himself.16). Quarterly Newsletter of the Laboratory of Comparat ive Human Cognition. including external artifacts. (1996) Culture in mind. we have argued that the more interesting contrast between them concerns the role of cultural artifacts in constituting the two pol es of the individual-social antimony. he focus ed on a set of issues and phenomena that do not appear to have any clear counterpart in Piag et. Philosophical studies. Related argume nts have been put forth by Rumelhart. Cazden. (1993) The case for connectionism. There is little doubt in our view that there is still much to be learned from bo th Piaget and Vygotsky. Cambridge. and in many cases the strengths of one theorist complement the weaknes s of the other. the flesh. MA: Harvard University Press. New York: Ballantine. rather than directly in conflict with those at the center of Piaget. Dennett (1991) and Hutchins (1995). 5-8. (1993) A cultural-historical approach to distributed c ognition. Clark (1989). and credit. in human mental processes is one that has great re sonance in contemporary cognitive science as well as the human sciences more broadly. 71.. and Hinton (1986). Clark. In pursuing this line of inquiry. to the many ways in which networks can learn to exploit external environmental structures so as to simplify and transform the nature of internal processing' (p. Vygotsky's position on the centrality of a rtifacts. M. (1981) Performance before competence: Assistance to child discourse i n the zone of proximal development. M. .s thinking. pp. Dr aft of chapter for 2nd Edition of PDP volumes. C. Instead. & Engestrom.for a position which recognizes the need to give 'more attention. A. 11 9-154. Smolensky.
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Guddat (Eds. 52-83. Quarterly Newsletter of t he Laboratory of Comparative Human Cognition. Vol. Garden City: Doubleday and Co. The concept of activity in Soviet psychology .D. 414-434. E. (1979) The making of mind. J. Wertsch. L. A. ( ) Cognitive artifacts. (1981) The instrumental method i n psychology.). New York: Plenum. Writings of the young Marx on philosophy and society. (1929) The problem of the cultural development of the child.(1932) The moral judgment of the child. McClelland. Vygotsky.Hutchins. Cambridge.S. Vygotsky. 36. D. Journal of Genetic Psychology.).). J. Van Geert & L. Easton and K. A.S. E. In J. In L. (Ed. (1932) Studies on the cultural development of the child. Smolensky. 493-506.M. 35. Annals of theoretical psychology.R.V. Lave. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul .). Leont'ev. (1928) The problem of the cultural development of the child. (1986) Schemas and sequential thought processes in PDP models. L. D. P. and Hinton.. 40. 12(1). Taylor. Designing interacti on: Psychology at the human-computer interface.E. (1970) Structuralism. Journal of genetic psychology. Cambridge. (1991) Situated learning. (1845/1967) Theses on Feurbach. G. Valsiner. J. Rumelhart a nd the PDP Research Group. & Wenger.H. . MA: MIT Pr ess. New York: Cambridge University Press. Luria.E. Marx. 1987. 12-24. vol. (1993) Culture and human development: A co-constructivist perspecti ve.E. (1987) Introduction to L. Moss (Eds.. J. MA: Harvard University Press. Carroll (Ed. (1995) Cognition in the wild.S. (1985) Philosophy of the human sciences: Philosophical papers 2. McClelland.. In J. J. II. Piaget.N. A.L. Vygotsky. Rumelhart.A. N. K. Cambridge. C. Norman.R. Journal of Genetic Psychology. D. New York: Cambridge University Press . Luria. 2: Psychological and biological models. Stern.L. X. E.. Minick. Piaget. New York: Cambridge University Press. New York: Basic Books. In P. Parallel distributed processing: Explorations in the microst ructure of cognition. In J. MA: MIT Press. (1916/1990) Problems of cultural psychology. Anchor Books.
NY: M. Sharpe. 23 .Armonk.E. pp. 134-143.
Wozniak.I: Problems in the theory and history of psych ology]. 1 In this anti-atomistic stance. New York: Plenum. and cognition: Vygotskian perspe ctives. Or.) Wertsch. 1979).). NJ: Erlbaum. In J.S. (1993) Co-constructive metatheory for psychology: Implications for an analysis of families as specific social contexts for development. Problems of g eneral psychology.P. Including the volume Thinking and speech. Moscow: Izdatel'stvo Pedagogika. Fischer (Eds. Hillsdale. (1982) Sobranie sochinenii. 8 (1). Wertsch. Tom pervyi: Voprosy teorii i istorii psikhologii [Collected works. Wozni ak & K. V. (1985) Vygotsky's ideas about units of analysis for the analysis of mind. vol.S. Cambridge.W. (1991) Voices of the mind: A sociocultural approach to mediated ac tion. (1987) The collected works of L.H. Culture.Vygotsky. This is a 1997 paper by P.). This is a site for Cultural-Historical Psychology and provides a periodically-up dated listing of Vygotskyean and related resources available on the Web. Doolittle titled Vygotsky s zone of proximal developme nt as a theoretical foundation for cooperation learning and is published in Journal on Excellence in College Teaching. MA: Harvard University Press. Trans. J. L.H.S. put more positively in Vygotskian terms. R. communication. Development in context: Acting and thinking in specific environments. L. we are always subject to what Charles Taylor (1 985) has called outside interference.E.1. a spec ific characteristic of human thought is the ability and need to control oneself from the outside (Luria.V. In. Vygotsky: Vol. Vygotsky. New York: Cambridge University Press. 24 . 83-103. R. (Ed. (N. Zinchenko. Mini ck.V.
Consistent. lasting results in students by the time they leave schoo l. Basic Elements One of the leading examples of an outcome-based learning program is the OutcomeDriven Developmental Model (ODDM) of the school system in Johnson City. Clarity of focus around significant. New York . which are define d by each school 2. The principles followed by outcome-based learning practitioners include: 1. culminating exit outcomes. all school programs and instructional efforts are des igned to have produced specific. Explicit relationships between any learning experience and the ultimate outcomes to which that experience is essential Under OBE.Curriculum: What Should Be Learned? This section examines seven different curriculum theories: · Outcome-Based Education (OBE) Outcome-based Learning Definition In outcome-based learning. Expansion of available time and resources so that all students successfully reac h the exit outcomes 3. curriculum design includes these steps: Discern future conditions Derive exit outcomes Develop performance indicators Design learning experiences Determine instructional strategies Deliver instruction Document results 25 . high expectations of 100% success 4.
which is defined and design ed outside the classroom.Determine advancement Reading Successful Schooling for All: A Primer on Outcome-Based Education and Mastery Learning. this curriculum will produce educated and resp onsible graduates for the community. teaching revolves around imparting a predetermined body of knowledge. Instruction Instruction is based on a defined core content. critical thinking. Some advocates woul d limit the core to basic academic subjects like English. 26 . Though academic content remains the primary focus of the core curriculum. and government. In fact. science. and community service. a predetermined body of skills. Presumably. Gray. NY 13790. All students learn a common set of knowledge. while others would include general learner outcomes such as problem solving. However. Johnson City Ce ntral Schools.95 each) · Core Curriculum Definition In a core curriculum. math. and abilities i s taught to all students. I.). teamwork. Unfortunately. (1-9 copies $10. Johnson City. p roblem solving. as well as the use of conventional letter grades. Let s examine how a core curriculum affects the following elements of education: Curriculum The curriculum is built on a mandated core. 666 Reynolds Road. Rather than focusing o n discovery. and team learning. The core curriculum method easily lends itself to traditional testing based on informatio n recall. skills. Discussion The core curriculum movement assumes there is an uniform body of knowledge that all students should know. Network for Outcome-Based Schools. Although the core curriculum method does not preclude using critical thinking. Lee (Ed. some c ore teaching is moving toward application and problem solving. there often isn t much consensus on who is the community and who speaks for the community. and abilities. Assessment The core content literally shapes the assessment process. it prompts teaching toward the correct answer. knowledge. there is a growi ng conflict about what topics a core curriculum should contain. a core curriculum doesn t preclude the use of authentic assessment and portfolios.
written. whole language practitioners don t see curriculum as a prescribed course of study or a p articular set of instructional materials. as well as what he or she e xpects from a language learning situation. or mental. elicit. they see it as the cognitive experience each learner has. The fundamental concern of someone who uses language is making sense. We learn language cumulatively by using it. and communication strategies. A whol e language curriculum treats the learner as a legitimate conversation partner and someone who seeks meaning. Consequently. The teacher s role in such a curriculum is one of interpretive teaching. and by hearing and seeing through errors and . To a learn er. Whole language doesn t just include the specific content being thought about. whole language practitioners support their student s efforts even those that aren t entirely accurate rather than directing their thinking and language use. or kidwatching in other words. more general program is based on recent research of how children acquire oral and written langu age skills. A whole language curriculum im merses students in situations requiring open-ended. builds more knowledge about the world. it also includes how a student demonstrates a particular task. Basic Elements Because knowledge doesn t exist separately from the people who construct it. whether ora l or written.· Whole Language Definition This philosophy about curriculum in both language arts and a broader. there is always the risk of trying new strategies. Therefore. and e rror is inherent in the process. each language transaction helps us perfo rm the next one. making sense of how students engage in language learning and offering experiences that support their experiments. complex language use. Language learning is a social activity. reading and writing are crucial to forming an understanding of the world. it requires negotiating meaning and taki ng in feedback from partners. Instead. Practitioners encourage this spirit by reading meaning into children s speech or writing attempts. whether it be oral. Whole language practitioners work to provoke. With language learning. an d show interest in communication exchanges both learner-learner and learner-teacher. Each language encounter. the function of symbols.
spelling inventions. With the support of 27 . rather than correcting and prescribing exactness.
fairness. responsibility. know the good.their teachers. Typical core values include respect. desire the good. Schools committed to character education tend to: Emphasize the importance of adults modeling values in the classroom as well as i n their everyday interactions Help students clarify their values and build personal bonds and responsibilities to one another Use the traditional curriculum as a vehicle for teaching values and examining mo ral questions Encourage moral reflection through debate. they also have the responsibility to help them cultivate basic moral values to guide their behavior throughout life. and do the good. and the emerging consensus of shared ethical values. Character education teaches students to understand. Heineman: Portsmouth. Reading Whole Language: Theory in Use. Neuman. the children s spoken and written experiments help them locate and learn the conventional language usage. · Character Education Definition This curriculum method revolves around developing good character practicing and teaching moral values and decision making. Judith M. trustworthiness. Today s emphasis on character education is propelled by the decline in family infl uence. and c ommunity participation. downward trends in youth character. commit to. journals. and discussion 28 in students by . caring. NH (1985) . and act on shared ethical values in other words. Basic Elements Character education assumes that schools don t just have the responsibility to hel p students get smart.
as prerequisites to learning. and humanistic forces explaining human behavior. it must be taught. Wynne. The Journal of Character Education. Providing students with a sharp sense of self 2. in its Curriculum Guidelines for Multic ultural Education. Edward A.Encourage values in action through community service and other community involvement strategies Support teacher development and dialogue among educators on the moral dimension of their job The influence of character education is evident in the outcomes of many school d istricts emphasizing qualities such as participant in a democratic society. behavioral. Kevin. Education Leadership. November. New York: Merrill. Helping students develop decision-making. along with communication and think ing skills. and Ryan. and citizenship skills 29 . Jefferson Center for Character Education. contributor to t he community. Helping students understand that conflict between ideals and reality exist in ev ery human society 4. Reclaiming Our Schools: A Handbook on Teaching Character. Basic Elements The National Council for Social Studies. 1993. Reading Character Education. CA. lists the key functions of multicultural education as: 1. Academics and Discipli ne. and ethical global citizen. Since the ability to recognize our own and others cultural lenses is essential to all learning. Helping students understand the experience of ethnic and cultural groups in history 3. Pa sadena. Multiculturalism Definition Multiculturalism is based on the belief that varying cultural dynamics are the f ourth force along with the psychodynamic. social participation.
National Council on Social Studies Task Force on Ethnic Studies Curriculum Guide lines (1992). These students are no longer p repared to enter today s changed workforce. Volum e 5. Social Education. but do not attend fouryear colleges. C. off ering students only a college prep or a tech prep course of study. linguistic. Some critics question whether a tech prep curriculum significantly differs from vocational education. or graduate schools. and technologies that is integrated. work in teams. Reading Multicultural Education: Issues and Perspectives. 30 . Banks.A. applied.5. And others want high schools to reorganize themselves. · Tech-Prep Definition Tech prep is most traditionally and frequently defined as a four-year program (d uring grades 11-14) that leads to an associate degree or two-year certificate in a spe cific career field. The tech prep curriculum was designed as the instructional strategy for preparing such students to work in a labor market tha t requires more technical skills. (E ds).M. socio-economic status. This curriculum includes a common core of required mathematics. science communications. J. universities. and Banks. Curriculum Guidelines for Multicultural Education. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Critics also allege that multiculturalism hinders the assimilation of various cultures into America s greatest hallmark: the melting pot. which demands workers who can think. as well as cultural. problem solv e. and racial identities. 274-292. Discussion There is a strong consensus that American schools have generally ignored the ave rage student: the middle 50% of teenagers who complete high school. and sequenced. and apply knowledge. Achieving full literacy in at least two languages Multicultural is broadly understood to include experiences shaping perceptions common to age. and exceptionality of an y kind. religion. This controversial approach has stirred passionate critics. gender. who contend that it aims to replace Eurocentrism with othercentrisms.
humanistic learning as a foundation for the future learning of all students. There is a strong push to try integ rating what happens in the academic classroom with activities in the occupational labs. science. Dale. eliminating duplication and ensuring skills are acquired in the best p ossible sequence. Reading The Neglected Majority and Tech Prep/Associate Degree. Basic Elements The Paideia plan is built on the understanding that education serves to prepare individuals for (1) earning a living. and (3) self-development. here is the plan s proposed framework: GOALS Acquisition Development Enlarged of of understanding 31 . the focus is on teaching math. required. However. The drawback of this is that although tech prep prepares stude nts for the job market. 12-year course in general. there is still a heavy reliance o n traditional tests and grades. we see a greater use of assessing work sampl es and projects than in traditional classes. · Paideia Definition This essentialist curriculum created in 1982 by Mortimer Adler and The Paideia Gro up proposes a single.Let s examine how a tech prep curriculum affects the following elements of education: Curriculum High schools and community colleges coordinate the tech prep curriculum together. Predominantly. Most of the occupat ional skills are taught in the laboratory setting. and communication for both application and contextual purposes. Instruction Tech prep instruction is still classroom-oriented. employers don t rate employee performances with letter grades and test scores. Parnell. With that i n mind. it may not prepare them for the lack of traditional assessment in th e workplace in other words. (2) citizenship. Critics of tech prep programs maintain that neither the curriculum in the high school nor the community college has changed to reflect the issues and problems of today s workplace. Assessment: In the occupational labs.
Whatever Became of Paideia? (And How Do You Pronounce It?). math. The Paideia Group believes that only the teachers and princi pals who can change education should design a specific curriculum blueprint. history. Socratic MEANS Didactic instruction exercises. 32 . natural science. The American High School at the Crossroads. p. Reading Educational Leadership (March 1984): Dennis Gray. supervised questioning and active practice participation Language. calculating. geography. 56-57.intellectual organized skills of ideas and knowledge (learning values skills) Coaching. the Paideia plan provides a framework and process for crafting the critical details of the pr ogram in ways appropriate to their own communities. 4-13. Instead. p. AREAS literature. fine arts. Daniel Tanner. problem solving. social Speaking. listening. critical judgment Discussion of books (not texts) and art performances studies Theodore Sizer of the Paideia Group insists that Paideia is not a detailed curri culum for deliberate reasons.
but on the process of maste ring it. 33 .Instruction: How Should Learning Be Designed? This section examines ten different theories on instruction: · Mastery Learning Mastery Learning Definition Mastery learning proposes that all children can learn when provided with the app ropriate learning conditions in the classroom. Benjamin Bloom. Schools. The teach er also provides frequent and specific feedback by using diagnostic. Assessment Teachers evaluate students with criterion-referenced tests rather then normreferenced tests. one based on well-defined learning objectives organized into smaller. In a mastery learning envir onment. This type of learning works best with the traditional content-focused curric ulum. as well as regularly correcting mistakes students make along their learning path. Mastery learning ensures numerous feedback loops. teacher-paced instructional approach. the teacher directs a variety of group-based instructional techniques. with refinements made by Block. based on sma ll units of well-defined. appropriately sequenced outcomes. formative tests. Reading Block. sequentially o rganized units. rather than with classmates. How Mastery Learning Affects Education Curriculum Mastery learning does not focus on content. Mastery learning is predominantly a group based. Instruction This strategy captures many of the elements of successful tutoring and the independent functionality seen in high-end students. All Our Children Learning. Society and Mastery Learning. some mastery learning strategies require students to work independently. in which students learn by cooperat ing with their classmates. However. Discussion The application of mastery learning is based on Benjamin Bloom s Learning for Mast ery model.
It is up to the instructor to integrate the interactive exercises with the speci fic lesson content. students know they will work independently to write down their thoughts on elephants or lions. Cooperative Learning. however. educators aim to correct the unconscious societal and educational bias that favors competition. The teacher must give careful thought to who should collaborate with wh om and why. So when the teacher announces that the class will use a particular exercise to explore today s lesson topic. Basic Elements Research shows that both competitive and cooperative interaction are a healthy p art of a child s repertoire of behavior. Resources for Teachers. and how to balance the attention to both content and cooperative skill building. students know what type of interaction to expect. By developing deliberately cooperative techniques. share their ideas with their partner. For example. teachers and s tudents develop a repertoire of these structures. · Accelerated Learning Definition Accelerated learning is a comprehensive approach to school change. Together. when the teacher says the class will use the ThinkPairShare exercise to study African wildlife. Patterns for student interaction are called structures. when educators introduce cooperative learning into the classroom.· Cooperative Learning Definition Cooperative learning consists of instructional techniques that require positive interdependence between learners in order for learning to occur. even when it s counterproductive. then find a pa rtner. Research has also found an interesting racial implication in cooperative learnin g: Minority children are more likely to retain these cooperative strategies. how to manage the classroom while unleashing cooperative activity. minority learners s how a disproportionate improvement in achievement. Reading Spencer Kagan. 1992. and probe each other for complete understa nding. developed in 1986 at Stanford University. By second grade. Accelerated learning aims to create school success for alls tudents by . urban children have effe ctively extinguished their cooperative behavior and persist in competition. In fac t.
serving as a framework for all curricular. including youth organ izations. religious groups. and students: It stops them from blaming each other and factors beyond their control for the students poor educational outcomes. For example. and organizational practices so that they provide enrichment not ju st remediation for at-risk students. Basic Elements When an accelerated learning program is introduced into a school. and organizat ional initiatives. t eaching. The idea is to radically change individual schools by redesigning and integrating curricular. intuition. instructional. Plus. communities are ripe with assets. and take respo nsibility for the outcomes.closing the achievement gap between at-risk and mainstream children. and students. Building on Strengths This program identifies and uses all the available learning resources in the school community. and the community. and organizational skills to the table. Empowerment/Responsibility Members of the school community can make important educational decisions. The accelerated learning theory assumes that at-risk students have learning gaps i n areas valued by schools and mainstream economic and social institutions. the strengths of at-risk st udents differ from those associated with predominantly white. pare nts. teachers. middle-class culture. And finally. parent s. instead of exaggerating weaknesses and ignori ng strengths. School administrators c ould make a concerted effort to creatively work with parents. the process in volves several guiding principles and values: Unity of Purpose Parents. senior citizens. teachers. teachers bring valuable insights. parents can positively influence their children s educatio n at home and help teachers understand their children better. businesses. staff. and administrators must agree on a common set of goals for the school. This breaks the stalemate among administrators. These goals become the focal point of everyo ne s efforts. Furthermore. take responsibility for implementing them. students. Getting Started as an Accelerated School . and often are overlooked. ra ther than merely complying with them. instructional. The pro gram also assumes that remedial approaches fail to close these gaps because they don t build on the students strengths and they don t tap into the resources of teachers.
Take stock of where you are. 4. 2. then identify gaps and needed changes. and establish small groups to work on these. Compare your vision to baseline information. 35 . and establish baseline data.There are four initial steps for developing an accelerated school. Identify 3-4 initial priorities. They are: 1. Create a shared vision as a focus for change. 3.
Thematic instruction integrates basic disciplines like reading. sometimes students help design the curriculum. science might study phenomena like weather and floods.Reading Hopfenberg. Te achers of all the different subjects taught in that particular grade work together as a te am to design curriculum. Thematic instruction seeks to put the teaching of co gnitive skills such as reading. mathematics. and so on. and writing in the context of a re al-world subject that is both specific enough to be practical. weather. Basic Elements Thematic instruction is based on the idea that people acquire knowledge best whe n learning in the context of a coherent whole. In some cases. integrated system (such as a city. Choosing a theme Themes often involve a large. such a s the works of Mark Twain. In the study of a river basin. students participate in choosing the theme or themes. and so on). Henry M. and when they can connect what they re learning to the real world.. Newsletter of the Accelerated Schools Project. Stanford University. math. and so on) or a broad concept (such as democracy. Again. School of Ed ucation. Instructors often strive to connect the theme to the students everyda y life. Typi cal steps include: 1. CA (1990). CA. Thematic instruction usually occurs within an entire grade level of students. science. · Thematic Instruction Definition Thematic instruction is the organization of a curriculum around macro themes. Stanford University. such as communities. Designing the integrated curriculum The teachers involved must organize the learning objectives of their core curriculum (both process skills and content knowledge) around the theme. The initial design requires considerable work on the part of teachers. Wendy S. for instance. Accelerated Schools. Stanford. an ecosystem. 2. 36 . and assessment around a preselected theme. rain forests. instruction methods. river basins. and broad enough to allow creative exploration. and Levin. School of Educati on. social studies could look at th e nature of river communities. and literature could study books and novels that focus on rivers. and scienc e with the exploration of a broad subject. math might involve calculating water flow and volume. Accelerated Schools. the use of energy. Stanford.
combining hours normally devoted to specific topics. In whole-brain learning.3. Sooner or later. For thi s reason. And the learners might even act out the words meanings or construct stories of their . Basic Elements Neurolinguistic findings about the brain s language functions show that in the int egrated brain. · Whole-Brain Teaching Definition Whole-brain teaching is an instructional approach derived from neurolinguistic descriptions of the functions of the brain s left and right hemispheres. It requires a lot of hard. The teacher next might use guided meditation to build a rel axed state containing memories of success before the listeners hear the definitions a gain. Encouraging presentation and celebration Because thematic instruction is often project-oriented. in which the learner makes connections that tap both hemispheres. bringing in outside experts. To relax learners. Whole-brain teaching emphasizes active learning . Plus . this will become easier ). 4. and so on. and use drama as they develop new id eas. might present new vocabul ary words by building a story or skit that uses them but doesn t define them in context. the functions of one hemisphere are immediately available to the other. Plus. plus a substantial r estructuring of teacher relationships and class schedules. teaching in teams. Thematic instruction can be a powerful tool for reintegrating the curriculum and eliminating the isolated. A reading teacher. to red uce the downshifting or primal thinking that occurs during distress. realistic predictions of barriers (such as. instructors may try enhancing the learning experience with music or soothing col ors. leaving time for listeners to draw images of the words. organizing field trips. students commonly create extensiv e visual displays. Another aspect of whole-brain teaching is managing the emotional climate. reductionist nature of teaching around disciplines rat her than experience. Designing the instruction This usually involves making changes to the class schedule. The tea cher then might play music while reading the definitions. in order to retain them. for instance. instructors may offer clear. it frequently involves students giving collective presentation s to the rest of the school or the community. initial design work. p roducing a more balanced use of language. Advancem ent may be sporadic ) and progress (such as. imaging is seen as the basis for comprehension. draw. learners are encouraged to visualize.
NY: Dutton (1976). Reading T. Use Both Sides of Your Brain. 37 . Buzan.own.
or individual exercises and assignments. · Service Learning Definition Service learning combines service to the community with learning outside the cla ssroom. 16(1). Teachers may also have to relinquish their perception as b eing the only source of information. categorizing the waste . Assessment Service learning often changes the nature of assessment by focusing on the customer satisfaction of the organization students are serving. Instruction Teachers may need to expand their own knowledge base to extend learnin g beyond the classroom. Schools throughout the country are striving to implement service learning along the entire K-12 continuum. some hig h schools have instituted a requisite that all students must perform a certain number of h ours of community service. Discussion Service learning has acquired several different meanings. 1980). However. Writing the Natural Way. Those students who do s ee connections or a lack of them between the concepts learned and their real-world applications may pressure schools for curriculum changes of context and relevanc y. This may include class. Rico. Schools use service learning to provide meaning and contex t to the information taught. And some schools even employ programs in which individual students serve the community organizations that relate to their career interests. Los Angeles. The goals of instruction often change from amassing knowledge to using and applying knowledge in a real-world context. For instance. For examp le. Schuster and L. team. How Service Learning Affects Education Curriculum Depending on the definition of service learning. D. Vincent.H. a project might revolve around cleaning up trash in a park. Academic Therapy. Teacher s assessme nt can 38 . 69-72 (Sept. vol. Teaching Math and Reading with Suggestion and Music. students that merely volunteer for community servic e hours may have little impact on what happens in the classroom. and determining its impact on the environment. there can be a signifi cant impact on curriculum. CA: Tarcher.L.G. Other schools have implemented service learning as a part of their ongoing curri culum.
while students learn from the ir instructor s previous experience using the strategies Adult learning principles greatly support cognitive coaching and predict its suc cess. in the scaffolded instruction technique. and calculating strategi es by naming the strategy (such as eliminating alternatives or finding the main idea ). For example. in his 1990 article Promoting Metacognition and Motivation of Except ional Children in Remedial and Special Education. lists the following fundamentals of building effective metacognitive skills: 1. and generalizing. In modeling. teachers benefit from the students misconceptions and observations of the strategies. it encourages self-efficacy and pride. clarify. Basic Elements Coaching involves the modeling of self-appraisal and theself-management of cognition by an expert. reading. in order to adjust difficulty levels 3. However. By providing personal insight s into the learner s own thinking processes. Scott Paris. For example. Common goals held by teachers and students 2. is another prominent aspec t of coaching. int ernalizing. and self-appraise. It also involves learner performance and reflection. the n explaining why it should be learned. adult coaching is often used as an alternative to clinical supervision in developing the teaching and management skills of school administrators. Cognitive Coaching Definition Cognitive coaching is based on the idea thatmetacognition or being aware of one s ow n thinking processes fosters independence in learning. The instructor also provides explicit steps for using a particular strategy. teachers and stude nts take turns leading dialogues about texts. Ongoing assessment of performance. both on the part of instructor and student. cognitive coaching is also being developed in K-12 instructional programs for sp . Plus. the instructor explains thinking. and evaluating it.be either shared or replaced by assessors in the community who can provide more accurate feedback. Dialogue. deciding when it s appropriate. Mutual regulation in other words. confiden t problem-solving skills. summarize. question . asking each other to predict. cognitive coaching builds flexible.
ecial 39 .
Remedial and Special Education. Develop programs to closely coordinate secondary and post-secondary education with employers. Alexandria: ASCD. Marzano. Vocational education is considered too narrow and specific. 2. Dimensions of Thinking. and assist them in finding work relevant to their needs and interests. R.J. and ineffective at motivating most students. Scott G. outdated by modern technology. provide guidance about career paths. Apparently. New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education. Paris. either through paid employment with a business or self-employment. and ineffective in building language and math skills. Academic education is criticized for being too conventional. Basic Elements In general. Nov-Dec 1990. the same principles apply for bot h adults and children imagine that! Reading Farmer. many students who are n t college-bound are neither prepared for nor connected to employment opportunities . Link schooling with the demands and realities of the workplace. pp 7-15. 3. Promoting Metacognition and Motivation of Exceptional Children.needs and whole language students. From middle school on. building a school-to-work transition program entails the following t hree approaches: 1. · School-to-Work Transition Definition School-to-work programs provide ways for students to transition successfully int o the economy.Apprenticeships and school-business partnerships are just two of the many ways educators and businesspeople can produce a shared view of youth learning and development. upon high school graduation. 40 . Numerous studies reveal that. driven predominantly by standardized test s. Through employment-related experiences and on-the-job learning.. schools should orient youth to work. help them explore different types of jobs.. students can receive significant exposure to the workforce and can prepare for their future work environment. et al. Integrate the long-separated tracks of academic and vocational education. James A.
Plus. Instructional te chnology has the power to enhance overall knowledge accumulation. Discussion Some educators believe the use of interactive. students can take courses from a global satellite feed or on the Internet. The use of instructional technology changes the teacher s role from expert to facilitator or coach. teleconferencing. computer-based technology is cruc ial to improving classroom learning. reduce the g. instead of just focusin g on content mastery. CD-ROMs. Instruction Advanced technology could significantly affect the role of teachers. These educators contend that advanced technology w ill fundamentally change the learning process and structure. or anywhere else that has the capacity for a television.These changes have extensive learning implications. trackin . a s well as the structure of schools and classrooms. phone. satellites. Instruction Focus on experiential. students can access information far beyond the scope of their traditional textbooks. interactive media. for example. Curricula can b e individualized and adapted to students specific learning styles. With the Internet. of students into either academic or vocational studies. · Instructional Technology Definition Instructional technology is just what it sounds like: using computers. Other educators believe technology is merely a tool that has minimal impact on the quality of learning. or computer. modems. instruction is no lo nger limited to the school building or classroom. How Instructional Technology Affects Learning Curriculum Advanced technology has the potential to significantly expand the bread th and depth of the curriculum. and other technological means to support learning. For example. Also. project-based learning. fr om revamping the guidance counseling system to creating a coherent sequence of cour ses related to broad occupational clusters. at work. Learning can take place at home. including: Curriculum Develop new models that integrate vocational and academic education. Assessment Use portfolios to gauge a student s employability. particularly for high school s. or segregation.
Assessment Instructional technology will focus more and more on building feedback loops directly into the learning process. Students can obtain frequent and accur ate feedback, make corrections to their work, and structure learning experiences aro und their individual needs. Assessment can be monitored by offsite instructors, plus it ca n be ongoing and cumulative. Reading Lewis J. Perelman, School s Out. · Youth Apprenticeship Definition Youth apprenticeship is a learning system that prepares students for work by giv ing them a combination of classroom instruction and paid on-the-job training. In this edu cation model, students obtain a set of well-defined occupational abilities by learning concepts in the classroom and applications in a work setting. Discussion Youth apprenticeship systems in the U.S. have been influenced by successful apprenticeship models in Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, and Austria. About 66% o f the youth in these European countries use an apprenticeship system to prepare fo r the workforce. Apprenticeships range in occupation from baking to banking. Apprenticeship syste ms are run by a partnership of government, educators, and employers. Employer committee s play a significant role in designing, monitoring, and evaluating apprenticeship programs. Programs begin accepting youth at age 15 or 16 (once they have finished their re quisite education), and run for three to four years. U.S. policy makers have been trying to develop a youth apprenticeship system tha t is more flexible and fits into our nation s structure of education, governance, and b usiness. How Youth Apprenticeship Affects Learning Curriculum The curriculum for specific occupational skills generally has been perc eived as rather narrow. This is because content in the classroom mainly focuses on the applications called for in the workplace. However, most European apprenticeship programs have broadened their curriculum to focus more heavily on technology, cr itical thinking, problem solving, teamwork, and project management. 42
Instruction In the past, the popular opinion has been that academic instruction in apprenticeship and other occupational programs is neglected or weak. However, today there is a strong movement to add rigorous academic standards to apprenticeship programs, and to integrate the academic activities with the occupational skill t raining. Instruction at the work site varies: Some sites offer very formal and prescribed programs, while others provide informal mentoring by a master in the trade or profession. Critics charge that large companies tend to replicate classroom or laboratory training w ithout providing much hands-on learning, while small companies often exploit apprentice s as cheap labor without offering much real instruction. Assessment Assessment in the academic classrooms has traditionally relied on tests and grades. In the occupational laboratories, however, assessment includes a combina tion of traditional testing and project completion. At the workplace, assessment is gene rally authentic and includes feedback from supervisors, mentors, and co-workers. Since students are working while learning, there is continual feedback on the quality of their efforts. 43
when it can be modified to pinpoint specifi c abilities and function at the relevant level of difficulty. an assessment me thod must examine his or her collective abilities. it exists when assessment is appropriate in other words.Assessment This section examines three different assessment theories: · Authentic Assessment Definition Simply testing an isolated skill or a retained fact does not effectively measure a student s capabilities. and flexible. standardized. and when it promotes a rapport between examiner and student. and absolute. impersonal.This is what is meant by authentic assessment. Rather. 44 . natural. when it s personalized. Basic Elements Authentic assessment accomplishes each of the following goals: Requires students to develop responses rather than select from predetermined opt ions Elicits higher order thinking in addition to basic skills Directly evaluates holistic projects Synthesizes with classroom instruction Uses samples of student work (portfolios) collected over an extended time period Stems from clear criteria made known to students Allows for the possibility of multiple human judgments Relates more closely to classroom learning Teaches students to evaluate their own work Fairness does not exist when assessment is uniform. Authentic assessment presents students with real-world challenges th at require them to apply their relevant skills and knowledge. To accurately evaluate what a person has learned.
CA: Sage Publications. skills. The three basic questions CATs ask are: 1. 45 . by Egon G. it s used to facilitate dialogue between s tudents and teacher on the quality of the learning process. are a series of tools and practices designed to give teachers accurate information about the quality of student learning. What are the essential skills and knowledge I am trying to teach? 2. · Classroom Assessment Techniques Definition Classroom Assessment Techniques consist of a variety of feedback and discussion methods that gauge the quality of the learning process. How can I find out whether students are learning them? 3. Instead. There are several challenges to using authentic assessment methods. Authentic assessment is often based on performance: Students are asked to demons trate their knowledge. They include managing its time-intensive nature. that they need to evaluate the quality of their own learning. and how to improve it. How can I help students learn better? The classroom assessment process assumes that students need to receive feedback early and often. CATs provide both teachers and students with in process information on how well students are learning what the curriculum inten ds. ensuring curricular validity. and tha t they can help the teacher improve the strength of instruction. As au thors Patricia Cross and Thomas Angelo state in their book Classroom Assessment Techni ques. but does not compare or ran k students. also known as Classroom Research or Acti on Research. Information gathered isn t used for grading or teacher evaluation. Basic Elements Classroom Assessment Techniques (CATs).Authentic assessment is designed to be criterion-referenced rather than norm-ref erenced. Guba and Yvonna S. Such evaluation identifies strengths and weaknesses. Lincoln. Teaching without learning is just talking. or competencies in whatever way they find appropriate. Recommended Reading Fourth Generation Evaluation. and minimizing evaluator bias. Newberry Pa rk.
Analyze the data and share the results with students 5. Some schools create portfolios that serve as a representative sample of a studen t s work. Such records usually hold far m ore information that employers need. Patricia Cross and Thomas Angelo. a portfolio that c an be used to appraise student performance over time. Other schools want to use portfolios as an asse ssment tool to provide an alternative to standardized or teacher testing. Oft en. The disadvantage of portfolios is that they re not as quick and easy to evaluate. Target and build specific skills Reading Classroom Assessment Techniques. Enable students to self-assess their learning level 4. by K. f rom math equations to essays on literature. Discussion Portfolio assessment ranges from portfolios that demonstrates the student s best w ork to an expanded student record that holds a full representation of the student s work. employers would rather see a quantitative demonstration of a student s best skills and work. For example. Choose an assessment technique 3. Respond to the data CATs provide teachers with a menu of evaluation tools that: 1.The basic steps in the classroom assessment process are: 1. Choose a learning goal to assess 2. Check for student background knowledge 2. student portfol ios serve as a replacement for the high school diploma or transcript. showing the range of performance and experience. in some cases. many employers find them difficult to use as a determinant of a candidate s skills. There has been some confusion in the fie ld as to who the portfolio is being kept for. Because portfolios are qualitative . 46 . Apply the technique 4. Determine students learning styles 5. · Portfolio Assessment Definition Portfolio assessment provides a body of student work essentially. Identify areas of confusion 3. plus they re hard to rank. as with a grade or score.
how much curriculum is geared towards achieving high test scores rather than learning for learning s sake. Teachers can also utilize them to judge student performance. Assessment A portfolio can be used as an assessment tool. How well this works depends on how much a curriculum is developed to the test. projects. students can use their own portfolios for self-assessment and reflection. and applied learnin individualized instruction. External assessors employers. Portfolios are also compatible with more strategies focused on different learning to compliment a teacher s use of teamwork. the stud ent or the school? Ownership implies who gets to decide what goes into the portfolio . and so on can benefit from them. Instruction Portfolio assessment appears instructional strategies centered around g. as well as styles. where the portfolio is stored. Plus. and what happens to the portfolio after graduation.In some schools there has been much discussion on who owns the portfolio. in other words. 47 . Let s look the implications portfolios have on the following elements of education : Curriculum Some people believe that using portfolios will enable teachers to broaden their curriculum to include areas they traditionally could not assess wi th standardized testing. evaluation panels.
Using Problem-Solving Teams and Teamwork Classroom teams use common problemsolving processes and tools to tackle challenges and improve procedures. Identifying and Understanding Customer Needs Schools identify the constituencies t hey need to satisfy. Student s are often taught to use both methods and tools to improve classroom operations. and attempt to understand their expectations and needs.Organizational Theory: How Should Schools Be Designed? This section examines four different organizational theories of education: · Total Quality Schools Definition Total Quality schools apply the principles and practices of Total Quality Manage ment to their administrative and instructional functions. · Charter Schools 48 . Quality Planning Some schools use quality planning processes as a supplement to th eir strategic planning processes for identifying and achieving organization-wide goa ls. Thi s frequently involves employing statistical methods to understand why processes va ry. To do so. or scoreboard s . Basic Elements When introduced in schools. the Total Quality process usually involves a combina tion of the following elements: Understanding Systems and Processes Education administrators make efforts to understand their school as a system containing many subsystems and processes. This will often involve developing organization-wide quality indicators. they often will map their systems and flowchart their processes. Schools will then strive to improve by redesigning their systems. Schools will develop measurement systems that compare their performance to their constituents expectations. Using Data for Decision-Making Employees learn to use data in decision-making.
collective-bargaining agreements. while other states require rule-by-rule negotiations. a charter school takes on elements of site-based management: People at the school site have the power to make criti cal decisions about issues such as budget and personnel. publicly funded school that th e community holds accountable for the results it produces such as student learning rat her than for its compliance with school board or government rules and regulations. Stanford University introduced the concept of accelerated schools. · Accelerated Schools Definition In 1986. A charter school operates without the typical restraints of an ordinary public s chool. Its enrollment is made up of students who want to attend that specific school in effect. a charter school is a school of cho ice. eight states had passed laws permitting the creation of charter schools.Definition In concept. The pro gram i . some states give charter schools blanket waivers from existing state rules and r egulations. a charter school is a self-governing. Plus. and the state board of education to authorize charter sc hools. Some states cap the number of charter schools that can be created. In addition to its unique legal and governance structure. while others bypass the local boards and allow entities such as communit y colleges. The idea is to radically change individual schools by redesigning and integrating curricular. Some states give responsibility for negotiating and approving charters to local school boards. universities. The accelerated schools program assumes that at-risk students have learning gaps n areas valued by schools and mainstream economic and social institutions. However. instructional. for example. an a pproach designed to create success for all students by closing the achievement gap betwe en at-risk and mainstream children. while others allow the creation of new schools. Basic Elements By January 1994. there are significant differences among these laws: Some states limit chartering to existing public schools that want to convert to charter status. and organizational practi ces so that they provide enrichment not just remediation for at-risk students. and some do n ot.
49 . and the community. parent s.also assumes that remedial approaches fail to close these gaps because they don t build on the students strengths and they don t tap into the resources of teachers.
2. and establish small groups to work on these. Stanford University. Furthermore.Basic Elements When the accelerated schools program is introduced into a school. Building on Strengths This program identifies and uses all the available learning resources in the school community. and organizat ional initiatives. and take respo nsibility for the outcomes. communities are ripe with assets. And finally.. including youth organ izations. Wendy S. teachers. students. 3. serving as a framework for all curricular. School of Educati on. and often are overlooked. teachers bring valuable insights. and administrators must agree on a common set of goals for the school. CA (1990). and establish baseline data. religious groups. middle-class culture. . For example. Empowerment/Responsibility Members of the school community can make important educational decisions. then identify gaps and needed changes. staff. senior citizens. Create a shared vision as a focus for change. instructional. and students. teachers. the process in volves several guiding principles and values: Unity of Purpose Parents. and Levin. take responsibility for implementing them. 4. Henry M. and organizational skills to the table. ra ther than merely complying with them. Accelerated Schools. Take stock of where you are. businesses. pare nts. School administrators c ould make a concerted effort to creatively work with parents. the strengths of at-risk st udents differ from those associated with predominantly white. Compare your vision to baseline information. Getting Started as an Accelerated School There are four initial steps for developing an accelerated school. This breaks the stalemate among administrators. Identify 3-4 initial priorities. t eaching. These goals become the focal point of everyo ne s efforts. parents can positively influence their children s educatio n at home and help teachers understand their children better. intuition. Stanford. instead of exaggerating weaknesses and ignori ng strengths. Plus. Reading Hopfenberg. and students: It stops them from blaming each other and factors beyond their control for the students poor educational outcomes. They are: 1.
Stanford. Newsletter of the Accelerated Schools Project.Accelerated Schools. Comer Schools 50 . Stanford University. CA. School of Ed ucation.
business and economics. health and nutrition. intellectual and academic understanding. in other words. Adoption of a Developmental Perspective Toward Children and Their Learning This perspective incorporates three beliefs: 1. teachers. activities. and moral. due to how they have fared in the developmental continuum. Students enter school at different points along a developmental continuum. 3. Basic Elements When the Comer process is introduced into a school. minority children do not learn in schools. Learning is best achieved through the collaborative participation of all involved adults. internalize attitud es and values by relating emotionally to others. Ch ildren gradually learn to manage their feelings and impulses. They are born. it usually involves the foll owing elements: Changed School Governance Parents. All children are capable of learning. and lifestyles. to tally dependent. This approach hinges on Comer s theory of how children develop and learn. they are perceived as good. . Comer believes that children follow a developmental continuum. community members. For this reason. in essence. Corner attests individual s chools must support further developmental growth. When they d o not. When children come to school prepared to learn in that school s style. To learn. and spiritual and leisure activities. 2. Creation of a Social Skills Curriculum Schools need developmental programs for young children who do not learn certain types of skills at home. cognition. Parents become mediators who tell children what is important. a so cial skills curriculum covers politics and government. Typically. childr en must imitate and identify with authority figures. they are often perceived as bad. to control th emselves. attitude s. and the reasons that disadvantag ed. and social dimensions.Definition This is an approach to restructuring the governance and practices of individual schools. administrators. into a family that is part of a social network with beliefs. and school staff collaborate in making key educational decisions . initiated by psychologist James Comer in the mid-1970s. psychological. Development occurs in speech and language.
Although some may argue otherwise. th e subject-matter content. no hierarchy of putative superiority of method is intended. Cli ck here for information. disadvantages. Often times. Any instructional method a tea cher uses has advantages. and among them are the age and developmental level of the students. a particular teaching method will naturally flow into another. to split hairs over wh ether such methods are meaningfully different adds nothing to the process of learning to be a teacher. space and material resources. and obviously. write assessments based on learning objectives. not a ll are appropriate for all grades and subject matter content areas. Which instructional method is "right" for a particular lesson depends on many things. the available people. what the students already know. DIRECT TEACHING Advantages Disadvantages Preparation . Direct and indirect instruction are two main categories that many educa tors find useful for classifying teaching methods. and requires some preliminary preparation. but there are some criteria that pertain to each that can help a teacher make the best decisio n possible. and what they need to know to succeed with the lesson. There is no one "right" method for teaching a particular lesson. a bit more complicated than placing all instruction into two categories. 2009 Instructional methods and teaching methods mean the same thing and are primarily descriptions of the learning objective oriented activities and flow of informati on between teachers and students. manage classrooms. The methods are not listed in a preferred sequen ce.Instructional Methods Information Updated February 2. all within the same lesson. but it is. rank goals and select instructional programs. The following teaching or instructional methods relate to the instruction part o f the ADPRIMA Instruction System. time. and excellent teachers have developed the skills to make the process seamless to the students. the objective of the lesson. and the physical setting. NEW for 2009: A very reasonably priced. write effective lesson plans. as you will see. self-instructional CD or downloadable pr ogram on how to write learning objectives. Another. more difficult problem is to select an instructional method that best fits one's particular teaching style and the l essonsituation.
helps to clarify lesson objective.Very specific learning targets. Teacher should have information about student prerequisites for the lesson. Is a widely accepted instructional method. 52 . Relatively easy to measure student gains. Good for teaching specific Can stifle teacher creativity. Requires wellorganized content preparation and good oral communication Content must be organized in advance. Students are told reasons why content is important .
to learn how to work in groups. skills. COOPERATIVE LEARNING Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Helps foster mutual responsibility. LECTURE Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Factual material is presented in a direct. Bright students tend to act superior. Requires some time to prepare students. Steps must be followed in prescribed order. Audience is often passive. less critical and more compassionate. Decide what skills or knowledge are to be learned. May provide experiences that inspire . Proficient oral skills are necessary. logical manner. Supported by research as an effective technique. May not be effective for higher-order thinking skills. depending on the knowledge base and skill of the teacher.facts and basic skills. Students learn to be patient. Aggressive students try to take over. Some students don't work well this way. Learning is .useful for large groups. Loners find it hard to share answers.
Not appropriate There should be a clear introduction and summary. often includes examples. Is always audience specific. anecdotes. Effectiveness related to time and scope of content.difficult to gauge. Communication is one-way. 53 .
and challenge. constraints may to allow questions during Students can question. often requires teacher to "shift gears" quickly. for children below grade 4. Effectiveness is questions and prepare connected to appropriate responses in appropriate advance. PANEL OF EXPERTS . LECTURE WITH DISCUSSION Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Involves students. clarify affect lecture. as appropriate. discussion Teacher should also Lecture can be interspersed with opportunities. anticipate difficult discussion. at least after Time Teacher should be prepared the lecture. questions and discussion.for children below grade 4.
Not appropriate for elementary age students. Experts are often not effective speakers.Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Experts present different opinions. Can provoke better discussion than a one person discussion. Personalities may overshadow content. Teacher coordinates focus of panel. Teacher briefs panel. Subject may not be in logical order. Logistics can be troublesome. Frequent change of speaker keeps attention from lagging. introduces and summarizes. BRAINSTORMING Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Listening exercise that allows Can be Teacher selects issue. 54 .
getting away One idea can spark off other from known ideas. Teacher must be ready to Encourages full participation Needs to be intervene when the process because all ideas are equally limited to 5 . minutes. reality. Value to students depends in part on their maturity level. film or experience that needs to be analyzed Allows everyone to participate in an active process Not practical with more that 20 students . Draws on group's knowledge Students may and experience. VIDEOTAPES/SLIDES Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Entertaining way of introducing content and raising issues Usually keeps group's attention Looks professional Stimulates discussion Can raise too many issues to have a focused discussion Discussion may not have full participation Most effective when following discussion Need to obtain and set up equipment Effective only if teacher prepares for discussion after the presentation DISCUSSION Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Pools ideas and experiences from group Effective after a presentation.7 is hopelessly bogged down. unfocused.creative thinking for new ideas. criticism and negative evaluation may occur. recorded. If not managed well. have difficulty Spirit of cooperation is created.
A few students can dominate Some students may not Requires careful planning by teacher to guide discussion Requires question outline 55 .
participate Is time consuming Can get off the track SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Needs careful Need to prepare specific Allows for participation of thought as to tasks or questions for everyone purpose of group to answer Students often more group comfortable in small groups Groups may get Groups can reach consensus side tracked<<p> CASE STUDIES Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Students may Case must be clearly not see defined relevance to Case study must be Develops analytic and problem own situation prepared solving skills Insufficient Allows for exploration of information can solutions for complex issues lead to Allows student to apply new inappropriate knowledge and skills results Not appropriate for elementary level ROLE PLAYING Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Introduces problem situation Some students Teacher has to define dramatically may be too problem situation and roles Provides opportunity for self-conscious clearly students to assume roles of Not appropriate Teacher must give very others and thus appreciate for large groups clear instructions another point of view Some students Allows for exploration of may feel solutions threatened 56 .
Provides opportunity to practice skills Provides opportunity to practice skills WORKSHEET/SURVEYS Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Allows students to think for themselves without being influenced by others Individual thoughts can then be shared in large group Can be used only for short period of time Teacher has to prepare handouts GUEST SPEAKERS Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Personalizes topic Breaks down audience's stereotypes May not be a good speaker Contact speakers and coordinate Introduce speaker appropriately VALUES CLARIFICATION Advantages Disadvantages Preparation Opportunity to explore values and beliefs Allows students to discuss values in a safe environment Gives structure to discussion Students may not be honest about their values. Teacher must carefully prepare exercise Teacher must give clear instructions Teacher must prepare . Students may be too selfconscious. Students may not be able to articulate their values in an effective way.
discussion questions 57 .
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