Susan Guidaboni & Jessica Scanlon Advanced Seminar in Child Centered Issues Summer 2011 Constructivism & Child Centered Education
What is Constructivism? Constructivism is a learning theory that suggests that human beings create their own learning based on interactions and experiences they encounter and come into contact with first hand. The learner is actively engaged, solves problems, and collaborates with other learners.
Effects of Constructivism ChildSchool Independence Actively Engaged Explore new concepts Develop questions and utilize higher order thinking Reflect on learning Correct misconceptions Community of actively engaged learners Focused on students obtaining knowledge through experience Teachers facilitate learning experiences and encourage higher order thinking skills
The 5 ‘E’s Model Engage - students encounter the material, define their questions, lay the groundwork for their tasks, make connections from new to known, identify relevance Explore - students directly involved with material, inquiry drives the process, teamwork is used to share and build knowledge base Explain - learner explains the discoveries, processes, and concepts, that have been learned through written, verbal or creative projects. Instructor supplies resources, feedback, vocabulary, and clarifies misconceptions
The 5 ‘E’s Model Elaborate - learners expand on their knowledge, connect it to similar concepts, apply it to other situations - can lead to new inquiry Evaluate - on-going process by both instructor and learner to check for understanding. Rubrics, checklists, teacher interviews, portfolios, problem-based learning outputs, and embedded assessments. Results are used to evaluate and modify further instructional needs. http://www.personal.psu.edu/scs15/idweb/lessonplanning.htm #constructivismhttp://www.personal.psu.edu/scs15/idweb/lessonplanning.htm #constructivism (Penn State)
The 5 ‘E’s: planning a lesson StageDescriptionWho?How? EngageActivate prior knowledge, capture attention Learners Teacher Context Discovery ExplorePose questions, analyze situations, apply previous knowledge LearnersCollaboratively Individually ExplainPredict, generalize, create multiple perspectives, teacher gives resources Learners Teacher Collaboratively Individually ElaborateIntroduce new concepts, apply them to different contexts, analyze clashes between old and new knowledge Learners Teacher Technology Collaboratively Individually EvaluateProcess-oriented evaluation of learning Learners Teacher Collaboratively Individually
Traditional Classroom Versus Constructivist Classroom Traditional ClassroomConstructivist Classroom Basic skills lead up to a whole skill set of a concept. Books and workbooks are the primary source of learning. Repetition and rote memory. Independent work. Teacher is the leader of instruction. Assessment is based on results of written testing. A big question introduces a new concept. Books and manipulatives are used for learning. Interactive learning and revisiting skills through experience. Group work and collaboration. Teacher is a facilitator of knowledge and is also engaged in the lesson with students. Assessment is based on student work samples, observation, and some testing.
Case Study Traditional Math LessonConstructivist Math Lesson Teacher notes student interest in length of whale Decides students will measure out 100 foot length in hallway Students are given yard stick, teacher explains how to use it, students are impressed with the length marked in the hallway Teacher lays out an outline of the Mayflower in masking tape on the floor Teacher reads edict to students declaring that ship cannot sail until the king is told how long it is Students figure out how to measure ship, in student lengths, hands, body parts, ultimately ending in a discussion of the importance of standardized measurement http://www.usask.ca/education/coursework/802papers/Skaalid/ casestudy.html
Constructivism at Various Levels Elementary Setting Middle School / High School Settings Elementary Science Lesson High School History Lesson Discuss: How do these two lessons follow the constructivist model?
Benefits of Constructivist Learning Students learn more and are more likely to retain information. Students learn metacognition skills that last a lifetime. Constructivist-based models, enable students to transfer learning strategies to any new learning experience. Ownership of learning is given to the students. Creates a curiosity and motivation to learn. Allows students to develop and expand social and communication skills through group interactions.
Resources for Constructivist Learning Constructivist Theory http://tip.psychology.org/bruner.html http://tip.psychology.org/bruner.html Constructivist Project Demonstrations http://www.thirteen.org/edonline/concept2class/w2- resources.html#5 http://www.thirteen.org/edonline/concept2class/w2- resources.html#5 Global Connection http://www.globalschoolnet.org/index.cfm http://www.globalschoolnet.org/index.cfm Teaching Resources http://www.ndt- ed.org/TeachingResources/ClassroomTips/Constructivist% 20_Learning.htmhttp://www.ndt- ed.org/TeachingResources/ClassroomTips/Constructivist% 20_Learning.htm