Learning Theory 2

    Arlene Fairweather

    Learning Theories 2


     

    As a new teacher you hear a lot about different types of teaching philosophies.  My experience as a student is that the teacher stands in front of the classroom and talks,  you take notes and then regurgitate the notes on the exam. Now I am beginning to learn that education is best done when the student has a variety of experiences with the material or content.  Instead of always standing up in front of the class and lecturing the teacher should have students engaged in activities where they are moving around the classroom and talking to other students about the work.

    This teaching strategy is based on the constructivist theory that student knowledge is constructed through personal experiences and hypothesis about their environment.  Students need that personal interaction with the content in order for it to be learned. The following is an example of this i found on Thirteen.org :

    “Groups of students in a science class are discussing a problem in physics. Though the teacher knows the "answer" to the problem, she focuses on helping students restate their questions in useful ways. She prompts each student to reflect on and examine his or her current knowledge. When one of the students comes up with the relevant concept, the teacher seizes upon it, and indicates to the group that this might be a fruitful avenue for them to explore. They design and perform relevant experiments. Afterward, the students and teacher talk about what they have learned, and how their observations and experiments helped (or did not help) them to better understand the concept.”

     

    The challenge for me is figuring out how to go about this.  Where do I find the resources? What king of activity will be interesting to my students? Do my students have the skills to successfully complete the activity? How can I provide scaffolding and support for their various needs? My guess is that this comes with trial and error, time and experience.  

     

    Reference:

    Constructivism as a paradigm for teaching, Concept2classroom (2018) retrieved from https://www.thirteen.org/edonline/concept2class/constructivism/ on 5/1/2018