Saturday, April 07, 2007

So that's what it is!

Maybe one day I'll pin down what this "constructivism" is. Is it a theory of knowing as some claim? Or is it an approach to teaching as the influential Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development claims:

The Definition of Constructivism

Constructivism is an approach to teaching based on research about how people learn. Many researchers say that each individual constructs knowledge rather than receiving it from others.

Although people disagree about how to achieve constructive learning, constructive teaching is based on the belief that students learn best when they gain knowledge through exploration and active learning. Hands-on materials are used instead of textbooks, and students are encouraged to think and explain their reasoning instead of memorizing and reciting facts. Education is centered on themes and concepts and the connections between them, rather than isolated information.

Source: From The Language of Learning: A Guide to Education Terms, by J. L. McBrien and R. S. Brandt, 1997, Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
So, many researchers say that each individual constructs knowledge rather than receiving it from others. Ain't that grand. How did these researchers figure this out? Did they research how each individual constructs the periodic table, how atoms bond, how the sun produces energy? How individuals construct knowledge about the Renaissance period? Ah, I forgot. Through hands-on materials instead of textbooks.

1 comment:

Exo said...

Bravo!
Obviously, that is why we'd better take time to come up with Pythagorian theorem through hands-on experience, than learn it from someone else - we definetely (maybe possibly somewhat likely with the great staining of the brain) will come derive it till the 22nd Century... Who needs to it in 21st Century anyway?