Re: the role of externalization

From: Oudeyis (
Date: Sat Jun 05 2004 - 21:51:17 PDT

There may be more to this than externalised rehearsal of practice.Brian
Butterworth (1999) The Mathematical Brain London, Macmillan and Stanislas
Dehaene (1997) The Number Sense London Penguin Books make quite a case for
finger counting and basic arithmetic skills.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Mike Cole" <>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, June 06, 2004 12:20 AM
Subject: the role of externalization

> Observation made of 8 year old 3rd grader being drilled by grandfather
> on multiplication tables orally at request of mother.
> GP (Grandpa): So, what's 7X6?
> Amelila: I know it but I can't see it.
> GP. 42
> GP. What's 6X8?
> Amelia takes out a pencil, turns its eraser side toward the desk,
> pantomimes the written calculation, and says, "48."
> So, consistent with work of Goldin-Meadow, one role of gesture is to
> create externally visible/sensible problems not only for another, but
> to control one's own thought processes. "Seeing" herself write the
> equation 6X8= she was able to provide the answer that had not yet become
> fully internalized and accessible by seeing "in the mind's eye."
> A.R. Luria -- Human children learn to control themselves from the outside,
> a comment also attributable to L.S. Vygotsky.
> mike

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