Learning spatial terms improves children”s spatial skills
47 learning spatial terms improves children’s spatial skills 0 0 13 6. There’s little doubt that learning to play a musical instrument is great for developing brains. Science has shown that when children learn to play music, their brains begin to hear and process sounds that they couldn’t otherwise hear.
Many parents probably read the above sentence and started mentally Google-ing child music classes in their local area. A new study from Northwestern University revealed that in order to fully reap the cognitive benefits of a music class, kids can’t just sit there and let the sound of music wash over them. They have to be actively engaged in the music and participate in the class. Additionally, the study showed that students who played instruments in class had more improved neural processing than the children who attended the music appreciation group.
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Because it is only through the active generation and manipulation of sound that music can rewire the brain. Our results support the importance of active experience and meaningful engagement with sound to stimulate changes in the brain. To find these results, Kraus’s team went straight to the source, hooking up strategically placed electrode wires on the students’ heads to capture the brain’s responses. Kraus’s team at Northwestern has teamed up with The Harmony Project, a community music program serving low-income children in Los Angeles, after Harmony’s founder approached Kraus to provide scientific evidence behind the program’s success with students. According to The Harmony Project’s website, since 2008, 93 percent of Harmony Project seniors have gone on to college, despite a dropout rate of 50 percent or more in their neighborhoods. It’s a pretty impressive achievement and the Northwestern team designed a study to explore those striking numbers.
As a follow up, the team decided to test whether the level of engagement in that music training actually matters. Researchers found that after two years, children who not only regularly attended music classes, but also actively participated in the class, showed larger improvements in how the brain processes speech and reading scores than their less-involved peers. As to how to keep children interested in playing instruments, that’s up to the parents. Find the kind of music they love, good teachers, an instrument they’ll like. Making music should be something that children enjoy and will want to keep doing for many years! For exclusive parenting content, check out our TIME for Family subscription. And to receive parenting news each week, sign up for our parenting newsletter.
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Two factors affect the strength of the dissonance: the number of dissonant beliefs, and the importance attached to each belief. Dissonance occurs most often in situations where an individual must choose between two incompatible beliefs or actions. The greatest dissonance is created when the two alternatives are equally attractive. Dissonance theory applies to all situations involving attitude formation and change. It is especially relevant to decision-making and problem-solving. Consider someone who buys an expensive car but discovers that it is not comfortable on long drives.
Dissonance exists between their beliefs that they have bought a good car and that a good car should be comfortable. Dissonance results when an individual must choose between attitudes and behaviors that are contradictory. Dissonance can be eliminated by reducing the importance of the conflicting beliefs, acquiring new beliefs that change the balance, or removing the conflicting attitude or behavior. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 58, 203-210. The learner selects and transforms information, constructs hypotheses, and makes decisions, relying on a cognitive structure to do so.
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As far as instruction is concerned, the instructor should try and encourage students to discover principles by themselves. The task of the instructor is to translate information to be learned into a format appropriate to the learner’s current state of understanding. Curriculum should be organized in a spiral manner so that the student continually builds upon what they have already learned. Bruner’s constructivist theory is a general framework for instruction based upon the study of cognition. Note that Constructivism is a very broad conceptual framework in philosophy and science and Bruner’s theory represents one particular perspective. The concept of prime numbers appears to be more readily grasped when the child, through construction, discovers that certain handfuls of beans cannot be laid out in completed rows and columns.
Such quantities have either to be laid out in a single file or in an incomplete row-column design in which there is always one extra or one too few to fill the pattern. These patterns, the child learns, happen to be called prime. Child’s Talk: Learning to Use Language. The Culture of Education, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. The social learning theory of Bandura emphasizes the importance of observing and modeling the behaviors, attitudes, and emotional reactions of others. Learning would be exceedingly laborious, not to mention hazardous, if people had to rely solely on the effects of their own actions to inform them what to do. Because it encompasses attention, memory and motivation, social learning theory spans both cognitive and behavioral frameworks.
Bandura’s work is related to the theories of Vygotsky and Lave which also emphasize the central role of social learning. It is also the theoretical foundation for the technique of behavior modeling which is widely used in training programs. Commercials suggest that drinking a certain beverage or using a particular hair shampoo will make us popular and win the admiration of attractive people. The highest level of observational learning is achieved by first organizing and rehearsing the modeled behavior symbolically and then enacting it overtly.
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Coding modeled behavior into words, labels or images results in better retention than simply observing. Individuals are more likely to adopt a modeled behavior if it results in outcomes they value. Social Foundations of Thought and Action. The major theme of Vygotsky’s theoretical framework is that social interaction plays a fundamental role in the development of cognition. This applies equally to voluntary attention, to logical memory, and to the formation of concepts. Full development of the ZPD depends upon full social interaction.
The range of skill that can be developed with adult guidance or peer collaboration exceeds what can be attained alone. Vygotsky’s theory was an attempt to explain consciousness as the end product of socialization. Vygotsky’s theory is complementary to the work of Bandura on social learning and a key component of situated learning theory. Because Vygotsky’s focus was on cognitive development, it is interesting to compare his views with those of Bruner and Piaget .
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This is a general theory of cognitive development. In particular, the pointing gesture represents an interpersonal connection between individuals. Cognitive development is limited to a certain range at any given age. Full cognitive development requires social interaction. Cultural, Communication, and Cognition: Vygotskian Perspectives. The Conversation Theory developed by G. Pask originated from a cybernetics framework and attempts to explain learning in both living organisms and machines.
The fundamental idea of the theory was that learning occurs through conversations about a subject matter which serve to make knowledge explicit. In order to facilitate learning, Pask argued that subject matter should be represented in the form of entailment structures which show what is to be learned. Pask identified two different types of learning strategies: serialists who progress through an entailment structure in a sequential fashion and holists who look for higher order relations. Conversation theory applies to the learning of any subject matter.
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To learn a subject matter, students must learn the relationships among the concepts. Skinner is based upon the idea that learning is a function of change in overt behavior. A response produces a consequence such as defining a word, hitting a ball, or solving a math problem. Reinforcement is the key element in Skinner’s S-R theory. A reinforcer is anything that strengthens the desired response.
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It could be verbal praise, a good grade or a feeling of increased accomplishment or satisfaction. One of the distinctive aspects of Skinner’s theory is that it attempted to provide behavioral explanations for a broad range of cognitive phenomena. Ensure that good performance in the lesson is paired with secondary reinforcers such as verbal praise, prizes and good grades. The science of learning and the art of teaching. This theory stipulates that there are several different types or levels of learning. The significance of these classifications is that each different type requires different types of instruction. Gagne identifies five major categories of learning: verbal information, intellectual skills, cognitive strategies, motor skills and attitudes.
Different internal and external conditions are necessary for each type of learning. Gagne suggests that learning tasks for intellectual skills can be organized in a hierarchy according to complexity: stimulus recognition, response generation, procedure following, use of terminology, discriminations, concept formation, rule application, and problem solving. The primary significance of the hierarchy is to identify prerequisites that should be completed to facilitate learning at each level. While Gagne’s theoretical framework covers all aspects of learning, the focus of the theory is on intellectual skills. Different instruction is required for different learning outcomes.
Events of learning operate on the learner in ways that constitute the conditions of learning. The specific operations that constitute instructional events are different for each different type of learning outcome. Learning hierarchies define what intellectual skills are to be learned and a sequence of instruction. Military training and principles of learning. Fort Worth, TX: HBJ College Publishers. Knowles’ theory of andragogy is an attempt to develop a theory specifically for adult learning. Knowles emphasizes that adults are self-directed and expect to take responsibility for decisions.
Adult learning programs must accommodate this fundamental aspect. Adults learn best when the topic is of immediate value. In practical terms, andragogy means that instruction for adults needs to focus more on the process and less on the content being taught. Strategies such as case studies, role playing, simulations, and self-evaluation are most useful. Instructors adopt a role of facilitator or resource rather than lecturer or grader.
Instruction should be task-oriented instead of memorization — learning activities should be in the context of common tasks to be performed. Since adults are self-directed, instruction should allow learners to discover things for themselves, providing guidance and help when mistakes are made. Adults need to be involved in the planning and evaluation of their instruction. Adults are most interested in learning subjects that have immediate relevance to their job or personal life. Adult learning is problem-centered rather than content-oriented. This contrasts with most classroom learning activities which involve knowledge which is abstract and out of context.
Other researchers have further developed the theory of situated learning. Cognitive apprenticeship supports learning in a domain by enabling students to acquire, develop and use cognitive tools in authentic domain activity. Learning, both outside and inside school, advances through collaborative social interaction and the social construction of knowledge. In addition, the theory of Schoenfeld on mathematical problem solving embodies some of the critical elements of situated learning framework.
Situated learning is a general theory of knowledge acquisition . Yucatec midwives, native tailors, navy quartermasters, meat cutters and alcoholics. In all cases, there was a gradual acquisition of knowledge and skills as novices learned from experts in the context of everyday activities. Knowledge needs to be presented in an authentic context, i. Learning requires social interaction and collaboration. Situated cognition and the culture of learning. Anchored instruction and situated cognition revisited.
Cognition in Practice: Mind, mathematics, and culture in everyday life. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications. Over a period of six decades, Jean Piaget conducted a program of naturalistic research that has profoundly affected our understanding of child development. Piaget had a background in both Biology and Philosophy and concepts from both these disciplines influences his theories and research of child development. The concept of cognitive structure is central to his theory. Cognitive structures are patterns of physical or mental action that underlie specific acts of intelligence and correspond to stages of child development. Piaget: sensorimotor, preoperations, concrete operations, and formal operations.
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Cognitive structures change through the processes of adaptation: assimilation and accommodation. Assimilation involves the interpretation of events in terms of existing cognitive structure whereas accommodation refers to changing the cognitive structure to make sense of the environment. Cognitive development consists of a constant effort to adapt to the environment in terms of assimilation and accommodation. While the stages of cognitive development identified by Piaget are associated with characteristic age spans, they vary for every individual. Furthermore, each stage has many detailed structural forms. For example, the concrete operational period has more than forty distinct structures covering classification and relations, spatial relationships, time, movement, chance, number, conservation and measurement. Piaget explored the implications of his theory to all aspects of cognition, intelligence and moral development.
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Many of Piaget’s experiments were focused on the development of mathematical and logical concepts. Piaget’s ideas have been very influential on others, such as Seymour Papert . Applying Piaget’s theory results in specific recommendations for a given stage of cognitive development. For example, with children in the sensorimotor stage, teachers should try to provide a rich and stimulating environment with ample objects to play with.