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[xmca] Bruner on Vygotsky
Ch 5 "The Inspiration of Vygotsky" In "Actual Minds, Possible Worlds"
I was told to read this for HW in an accelerated literacy course I recently
attended. Accelerated Literacy is one of the methods used in teaching
indigenous Australians and low socio-economic students. See
http://www.nalp.cdu.edu.au/index.html for a bit more detail. There are two
other methodologies I am aware of used in Australia. One is called MULTILIT
(Making Up Lost Time in Literacy) and the other is Zig Engelmann's Direct
Instruction, used by Noel Pearson's group in Cape York.
To understand Bruner's point properly I had to read pp. 72-77 carefully
where he elaborates on the contradiction b/w children having to learn for
themselves (a sort of Piagetian view) and the adult really teaching them
across the ZPD rather than just broadcasting knowledge at them.
After my 2 days training in AL (another 2 days due later in February) I
think they have worked out how to do that in an "honest" way. ie. the nitty
gritty of raising the literacy level which involves a detailed analysis of
the text of good writers. They selected writers, text, various processes
gone through, then shortish passages from those texts and then did the
analysis of them in such a way that real skills were being transferred.
This is very truncated. I can go into a bit more detail if requested.
Altogether I found it an inspirational coming together of theory and
practice. My background is in maths / science / IT teaching (and secondary)
so I hadn't really gone into the literacy side in this depth before.
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