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[Xmca-l] Re: A request for assistance

Hi Ageliki

There was an approach called DISTAR - Direct Instruction Systems for the
Teaching of Arithmetic and Reading.  Their claim - 70's and 80's was that
this was the best way to teach working class children. But this was formal
instruction at K-6 or so. I cannot think that this could be moved
downwards. You can see examples on YouTube, noticing just what the
materials look like.

Preschool children are building up repertoires of vocabulary and so on, and
this could hardly be done in a formal way. Reading stories and information
books would be done in Shared Reading formats.  That's the best I can do,
but I look forward to other views.



On 16 August 2014 16:11, Ageliki Nicolopoulou <agn3@lehigh.edu> wrote:

> Dear XMCA community,
> I'm looking for a piece of information, and I wonder whether someone on the
> XMCA list has it at their fingertips.
> I'm writing something that deals with Vivian Paley's storytelling and
> story-acting practice. Among other things, that activity is an example of
> child-centered, play-based, and constructivist approaches to early child
> education--the kinds of approaches that have been getting squeezed out by
> preschool practices that exclusively emphasize teacher-centered, didactic
> transmission of specific academic skills by direct instruction.
> A lot of people think that pushing down didacted/academic teaching
> practices into preschool education is a good thing in general.  However,
> there are some people who might be willing to concede that more
> child-centered, play-based, and constructivist might be OK for young
> children from educated middle class families ... but that they won't work
> for poor and otherwise disadvantaged children. THOSE kids need direct
> instruction to transmit "basic skills", and giving them anything else is,
> at best, a distraction from giving them what they need for school
> readiness.
> My problem is this.  As we all know, a lot of people think that, and they
> say it in conversation, and they make written arguments that rest
> implicitly on that premise. In fact, this outlook is very widespread and
> influential. But I've found that very few of them seem to be willing to
> actually SAY it explicitly in their published work. I'm talking about
> academics and policymakers. There are pro-direct-instruction websites that
> say it pretty straightforwardly. But journals want academic citations in
> articles, so I'm trying to find one.
> *So does anyone out there know of any published work where someone actually
> SAYS that in writing?  That is, that more child-oriented, play-based, and
> constructivist preschool practices (however they actually describe them)
> might be OK for young children from educated middle-class homes, but are
> useless or even harmful for poor and disadvantaged kids, who need more
> teacher-centered, skill-based direct instruction?*
> I figured it couldn't hurt to ask.
> Thanks,
> Ageliki Nicolopoulou
> ________________
> Ageliki Nicolopoulou
> Professor of Psychology & Global Studies
> Personal Webpage: http://lehigh.academia.edu/AgelikiNicolopoulou/About
> Departmental Webpage: http://cas.lehigh.edu/CASWeb/default.aspx?id=1430

Carol A  Macdonald Ph D (Edin)
Developmental psycholinguist
Academic, Researcher,  and Editor
Honorary Research Fellow: Department of Linguistics, Unisa