Socio Cultural Dimensions of Learning

7 July 2016

Lev Vygotsky’s theory focuses on Socio-Cultural dimensions of Learning and development, emphasizing that individual cognitive processes are continuously embedded on a social and cultural context. It is referred to as “social constructivist theory”. In order to understand the influence of Lev Vygotsky’s work addressing socio-cultural dimensions of learning and development, it is important to understand the three central concepts of his theory which all have direct implications for the classroom.

These are the concepts of the zone of proximal development, scaffolding and the socio-cultural context of learning. Zone of Proximal Development. Vygotsky stated that a child follows an adult’s example and gradually develops the ability to do certain tasks without help or assistance. Vygotsky’s often-quoted definition of zone of proximal development presents it as “the distance between the actual developmental level as determined by independent problem solving and the level of potential development as determined through problem solving under adult guidance, or in collaboration with more capable peers.

Socio Cultural Dimensions of Learning Essay Example

” Vygotsky among other educational professionals believes the role of education to be to provide children with experiences which are in their ZPD, thereby encouraging and advancing their individual learning. Scaffolding. For Vygotsky, scaffolding is the process of providing a child or adolescent with a good deal of support during the time he is learning something. To successfully apply it in a classroom, it is important to know not only where a child is functioning now and where that child will be tomorrow, but also how best to assist that child in mastering more advanced skills and concepts.

This is where scaffolding comes in. Although not used by Vygotsky himself, the concept of scaffolding helps us understand how aiming instruction within a child’s ZPD can promote the child’s learning and development. Socio-cultural context of knowledge. Vygotsky emphasizes the important role of culture in influencing how individuals learn and think. His thinking has had a significant impact on research demonstrating that cognition is “situated” – occurs in content. Social Processes in Learning Situated Learning (Situated learning is related to Vygotsky’s notion of learning through social development.

Situated learning is a general theory of knowledge acquisition. It has been applied in the context of technology-based learning activities that focus on problem-solving skills. Lave (1988) argues that learning as it normally occurs is a function of the activity, context and culture in which it occurs. This contrasts with traditional classroom learning activities which involve knowledge which is often presented in an abstract form and out of context. Social Interaction is a critical component of situated learning – learners become involved in a ‘community practice’ which embodies certain beliefs and behaviours to be acquired.

Learning becomes a Social Process dependent upon transactions with others placed within a context that resembles as closely as possible the practice environment. Principles: 1. Knowledge needs to be presented in an authentic context, i. e. , settings and applications that would normally involve that knowledge. 2. Learning requires social interaction and collaboration. The two approaches to learning: decontextualized (classroom) versus contextualized (situated) learning.

General Idea of situate learning: “If you put a learner in a real world situation (authentic context) and interact with other people then learning occurs. ” Situated learning as well can be applied in technology based learning activities focused on problem solving skills. In this type of learning and participative methods can be used extensively by the teacher so that students will learn more effectively. Communication Patterns in Learning Sociolinguistics Is the study of language in society. Sociolinguistics is the study of the linguistic indicators of culture and power.

Sociolinguistics is the study of the effect of any and all aspects of society, including cultural norms, expectations, and the way language is used. It studies how dialects differ between groups separated by certain social variables, e. g. , ethnicity, religion, status, gender, level of education, age, etc,. and how creation and adherence to these rules is used to categorize individuals in social class or socio-economic classes. Sociolinguists also study the grammar, phonetics, vocabulary, and other aspects of this sociolect much as dialectologists would study the same for a regional dialect.

Sociolinguistics is the effect of the society on the language, while the latter’s focus is on the language’s effect on the society Fundamental concepts in sociolinguistics Speech community: describes a more or less discrete group of people who use language in a unique and mutually accepted way among themselves. High prestige and low prestige varieties; certain speech habits are assigned a positive or a negative value which is then applied to the speaker. Social network is another way of describing a particular speech community in terms of relations between individual members in a community.

A social network may apply to the macro level of a country or a city, but also to the intrapersonal level of neighborhoods or a single family Recently, social networks have been formed by the intern. et, through chat rooms, online dating services. Types of Classroom Interaction To avoid overemphasizing the theory and memorization of the material presented in class, teachers employ classroom interaction to give students the ability to think critically, focus on specific details and practice what they have learned. Teachers have access to many methods of creating an

interactive classroom. Common methods include classroom conversation, question-and-answer, reading aloud and role-playing. Reading Aloud Reading aloud is a classroom activity in which one person is reading while others listen. Reading aloud may be performed by the teacher or student. Reading aloud may be performed by a single person or by a group taking turns. This form of highly structured classroom interaction allows all students to be focused at exactly the same point in a reading. This allows students to easily focus on vocabulary and pronunciation. Conversation

Classroom conversation is a form of classroom interaction in which students in the class discuss a given topic. The conversation may be held across the whole class or in smaller groups. Conversation is an important form of classroom interaction because it helps students develop their language skills. In a conversation, students may apply the skills and knowledge they have acquired in the class, making classroom conversation a practical form of interaction. Role-Play Role-playing is an activity in which students take on given or chosen roles and act out a scene with others.

This form of interaction lends itself to almost any situation, and the only restriction is a student’s imagination. Role-playing allows students to demonstrate their creativity and knowledge about their roles, and it allows students to think outside of the constraints of the classroom and consider how they might apply the learned material to the real world. This form of interaction can integrate different subjects into one activity. Question-and-Answer Question-and-answer is a traditional form of classroom interaction in which a teacher or student explains and poses a question for the other.

Questions asked by the teacher are usually for the purpose of assessment, while questions asked by the students are usually for obtaining new information. The Socratic method is also a form of question-and-answer interaction. The Socratic method is a form of asking questions with the intent of leading students to discover the answer themselves. Question-and-answer as a form of interactive learning allows students to have a large influence on the agenda of the classroom, because it allows them to freely express their thoughts and feelings.

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