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Applied Developmental Theory Activity
Transcript of Applied Developmental Theory Activity
By Karla Montes and Sydney Johnson
Sociocultural Theory – A child’s higher level of cognitive development is best taught by responsible parents, caregivers, peers and the culture. Children learn from active hands-on experiences.
This theory also focuses on cultural beliefs and attitudes that impact how instruction and learning take place. Vygotsky’s theory states that every child experiences the same series of developmental stages but what they experience will be different based upon what the child’s culture deems as important better known as the social situation of development (Blunden, A. Talk, and February 28, 2011).
Principal of Vygotsky Sociocultural Theory
Learning can lead development
Children build their knowledge
Development can not be separated from its social context
Language has an essential role in central and mental development
Sociocultural theory has a major influence in education today. Vygotsky claimed social learning has to take place before development. Children have to learn what is expected of them prior to learning the material.
Collaborative dialogue is needed between an adult or expert peer for learning to occur. Example: A young child is given a jigsaw puzzle. The child has no idea how to put it together. The father (More Knowledgeable Other) shows the child pieces of the puzzle, shows the child how to attach pieces that fit together, completes the border of the puzzle and finally completes the puzzle with the child, all while discussing with the child what he is doing. The child begins to learn to put that puzzle and later, applies that knowledge to complete other puzzles, thus increasing their competency (Zone of Proximal Development) of completing puzzles.
Private Speech – also known as internal speech refers to a person talking to themselves. Activities and strategies are “discussed” in a person’s mind which aids development. According to Berk (1986), a child will engage in private speech:
1. When working alone on a complex task
2. When a teacher or expert peer is not available to help
More Knowledgeable Other – (MKO) a person who has a higher level of understanding for a task, process, or concept than the learner. The MKO could be an adult or teacher but could also be someone who is a peer. In some cases the MKO could be a person who is younger. For instance, who better to teach the adult the dance moves to the newest dance craze or how to play the latest X-Box game?
According to Saul McLeod (2007), Lev Vygotsky ideas differed from Jean Piaget.
1. Culture and social factors have more of an effect on shaping cognitive learning
2. The role of language has an effect on cognitive development
a. Language is what is needed in society to communicate with others
b. Language is a tool for intellectual adaptation
Vygotsky believed that social interaction and knowledgeable members of society help children develop and gain knowledge. Teachers play a vital role in student's development and through social interaction students are able to learn.
Zone of Proximal Development
Zone of Proximal development – (ZPD) is the difference in what a person can do without help and what a person can do with guidance and instruction. A child will follow an adult’s lead on a task and gradually develop the ability and knowledge to do the task alone which allows the child to learn skills that are larger than the child’s actual developmental level.
To gauge intelligence in a child it is important to be able to test a child’s ability in what they are able to do independently and able to do with adult’s help, rather than an academic, knowledge-based test of intelligences.
An educator’s role is to give a child an opportunity to experience within the ZPD which encourages and advances the child’s learning. ZPD is sometimes referred to as scaffolding – guiding a child’s learning by using focused questions and positive interactions and gradually changing the level of support required to fit the cognitive potential of the child.
Reciprocal teaching is used as a contemporary application of learning. Teachers use this for summarizing, questioning, clarifying, and predicting text. Slowly, the teacher’s role is reduced and the student is able to complete this process on their own.
There are skeptics who believe that culture does not play such an important part in cognitive development. Rather, observation and practice is believed to be a more effective way to increase cognitive development.
Learning activity based on Sociocultural Theory
By Dr. Jean
This activity is used with students learning phonics. It is an activity that teaches the basic sounds of the alphabet. The song uses actions with each letter to reinforce learning. Because the flash cards are included the actions can be learned without the music, as well.
1. Prior to activity: Print off the song cards at http://www.drjean.org/html/monthly_act/act_2005/03_Mar/Alphardy.pdf\
2. Begin activity: Gather students into an arm’s length circle
3. Play the tune for the song from (Jeopardy Theme Song)
4. The first few times go through the words as the children are preparing to sing the next line. Show the children the action for each letter as shown below. Most children will learn this catchy song quickly.
By Dr. Jean
How This Activity Supports
This activity supports cognitive, physical, and social development by teaching students the sounds of the alphabet, being able to perform actions as they sing, and have to work together to complete the song correctly. The words, songs and actions fall into the ZPD and the students are able to develop independence from peer/teacher assistance. This song can be used at the beginning of literacy learning or during morning meeting.
Watch as the children will sing this song to themselves once they get to know the words and when the children are learning how to sound out names, the actions may be used as cognitive hints. Example – child does not remember the sound for N; teacher says N for nod and the student remembers the N sound.
Zone of Proximal Development
The Way out
To summarize we can say that :
• Children are active learners
• Cultural values and customs dictate what is important to learn.
• Children learn best from more expert members of society such as responsible parents, caregivers, and more “expert” peers
• Vygotsky described the "zone of proximal development", where learning occurs.
About.com Psychology. (2013). Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/profilesmz/p/vygotsky.htm
Alphardy Words. Retrieved from http://www.songsforteaching.com/drjean/alphardy.htm
Berk, L. E. (1986). Relationship of elementary school children’s private speech to behavioral accompaniment to task, attention, and task performance. Developmental Psychology, 22, 671–680
Blunden, A., Talk and PowerPoint, February 28, 2011. Retrieved from http://www.ethicalpolitics.org/wits/vygotsky-development.pdf
McLeod, S. A. (2007). Vygotsky - Simply Psychology. Retrieved from http://www.simplypsychology.org/vygotsky.h
Youtube. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/
Lev Vygotsky was a Russian Psychologist. He was born in November 17, 1896 and died at the young age of 37 in June 11, 1934. He graduated with a law degree but went back to college for his psychologist degree. Vygostsky centered his studies in child development and education. His views were not accepted by the Communist in Russia and it is not until recently that his theory was accepted in the education and child development field ("About.com Psychology", 2013).