Thursday, May 29, 2014

Piaget and Vygotsky

In Cluster Two of the textbook we learned a lot about two different theories of developmental psychology and cognitive development.  We also learned a little bit about how the brain functions.  I am in the third semester of grad school, however, my undergraduate degree is in radiology and I do CT scans and X-ray at a hospital near where I live.  It was interesting to see a little bit of how the brain functions and to read some of how they're using functional MRI to study how blood flow in the brain when children and adults are performing cognitive tasks.  Learning about Piaget and Vygotsky I noticed there are some similarities and differences to their theories.  One similarity in the philosophies is the importance of social interactions in cognitive development, however, their thoughts on these social interactions varied.  To see a little bit more of the differences in Piaget and Vygotsky's theories, check out my webmap.

I have learned a little bit about these theorists before, but it was good to expand my knowledge and get to know them a little bit better!  I liked out classroom discussion about how we typically see more of Piaget's theory in classroom usage.  I think this is because Vygotsky really stressed the importance of social interactions.  When you're allowing the children in your class to interact with one another and allowing them to learn from one another, it is possible to loose a little bit of the control you have over the students.  Things may get noisier, more chaotic, and more hectic.  It also may be difficult to regroup the children after they participate in this learning task.  When I become a teacher, I will definitely incorporate more social interactions and allow for more social development in my classroom.  I really liked a lot of Vygotsky's ideas!

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