Learning and Cognition Critique
EDU 501: Learning Theories
Dr. Oliver Boone
February 17, 2013
Describe the modified behaviorist approach you created in your last paper to achieve the desired outcome.
My learning outcome is to teach children to Salsa. In my previous critique, I described how I would approach this task from the perspective of a radical behaviorist and from the perspective of a proponent of cognitive information processing theory; from the perspective of a proponent of meaningful learning and schema theory; and from the perspective of a proponent of situated cognition theory as opposed to a radical behaviorist perspective. At the end of the critique, I ...view middle of the document...
According to Piaget’s and his successors, my mixed cognition approach would be inappropriate in teaching children Salsa.
Critique this approach through the application of Piaget’s (and his successors) ideas.
Piaget’s theory differs from other learning theories. As stated earlier, I created a modified approach that included tenets of cognitive information processing theory; and situated cognition theory. Those theories focus on all learners. However, Piaget’s theory focuses on children specifically. It focuses on children’s development and not on children’s learning of information and specific behaviors (McLeod, 2009). Piaget proposes that cognitive development is a progressive reorganization of mental processes, which is a result of biological maturation and environmental experience. In other words, children construct an understanding of the world around them, and then experience discrepancies between what they already know and what they discover in the environment. This occurs via schema (building blocks of knowledge) and assimilation and accommodation (McLeod, 2009). With this in mind, how would I teach Salsa to children? It would be done through assimilation and accommodation.
Assimilation is when children use an existing schema (building blocks of knowledge) with a new object or situation (McLeod, 2009). In the previous critique, under the approach of meaningful learning and schema theory, I stated that children in my class showed interest in learning Salsa based on them watching the movie “Dance With Me”. Because they liked how the dance looked, they wanted to learn. With the use of assimilation, I would first have the children show the instructors and I what they know about the dance. I would then teach them the basic step and then take what the children know and incorporate it with the basic steps of Salsa that my instructors and I taught. For those students who have never seen the dance in any forum, I would place them in a separate group with other instructors, so they can be taught the basic steps. This would be considered accommodation. Accommodation comes into play when the existing schema does not work and needs to be changed to deal with a new situation (McLeod, 2009).
Critique this approach through the lens of interactional theories of cognitive development.
As a proponent of Vygotsky’s theory of cognitive development, I disagree with proponents of the newly created mixed cognition theory in teaching children Salsa. In the mixed cognition theory, proponents rely on the tenets of cognition information processing theory and meaningful learning and schema theory. The first problem with using the mixed cognition theory with tenets of cognition information processing theory and meaningful learning and schema theory is that the theories focus on all learners and not children specifically (McLeod, 2009). Vygotsky’s theory of cognitive development focuses on children only. Second, cognitive information processing...