The Construction Zone: Working for Cognitive Change in School

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Cambridge University Press, Apr 28, 1989 - Education - 169 pages
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This study addresses the process of developmental change as it occurs in the course of classroom lessons. The book aims to answer such questions as what forms of teacher-student interaction are most effective for producing developmental transformations in children's understanding. It also addresses why knowledge derived from psychological experiments on children's learning and development so often seems irrelevant to classroom teachers and how it is possible to reconcile Piaget's emphasis on the central role of independent intervention and constructive activity with learning theorists' emphasis on environmental feedback as the motive force of change. Assuming that intellectual development occurs in the "construction zone," a shared space encompassing the joint constructive efforts of teachers and students, the authors provide innovative answers to these and related questions. The questions are illustrated with detailed analyses of specially constructed lessons in the instructional areas of natural science, social studies, and mathematics.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Building tasks into curriculum units
17
Making goals happen
32
Basic concepts for discussing cognitive change
59
Assessment versus teaching
76
Social mediation goes into cognitive change
90
How the West has won
114
Conclusions for a cognitive science of education
134
References
157
Author index
165
Subject index
167
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About the author (1989)

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Cole is a professor at the Laboratory of Comparative Human Cognition at the Unieversity of California, San Diego.

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