Ana's detailed interpretation counterposes many things to my analysis strictly
according to Chaiklin and is better than great.
I especially appreciated the following, which I too had remotely sensed, tried
to put to words, but could not.
> What the teacher creates for Franklin is a situation in which he can
> distance himself from the actual events in the blocks, and look at his
> social acts only -- without a simultaneous demand to build a work of art.
What I'd like to add in perspective is that a strict adherence to Vygotsky,
ala Chaiklin, is problematic, especially if we chat'ers take our own medicine
and place Vygotsky with his cultural-historical context. We belong to and
make up a different context now. For example, the child development
literature today is rich in details about current models and observations,
and as Peg points out, there is a lot happening that does not occur in
But then at the top of p. 51, the text reads:
"Vygotsky's interest is to develop a theoretical basis for appropriate
pedagogical interventions, including principles for possible instructional
grouping of children and identification of specific interventions for
individual children. In this view, it is not acceptable to have only
correlational indicators or symptoms of psychological development; one must
use a theoretical understanding of the processes by which a person develops."
It makes perfect sense to insist that researchers "must use a theoretical
understanding of the processes by which a person develops", to develop
interventions -- they align with Vygotsky's interest. Developing "a
theoretical basis for appropriate pedagogical interventions" is not the
interest of teachers, however, who must often make decisions regarding the
choice of interventions in the time-span of seconds and minutes. Paley
writes as if she figured out why socio-drama worked for Franklin after the
fact, when she reflected upon the situation. Writing so could be a
rhetorical construction, but I don't see any evidence of this. So should
teachers be prevented from using the "zone of proximal development" because
they are not as immersed in the theory surrounding it as Chaiklin is?
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