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[Xmca-l] Re: Of Possible Interest to the XCMA/CHAT Family



Sure, Greg. But you have to move the emphasis. Not "knowing what's
irrelevant is the most important thing there IS in teaching!" but "KNOWING
what's irrelevant is the most important thing there is in teaching." As
Heathcote says, if the other boys had jeered that Coventry wasn't in
London, she would have had to defend him, knowing both that Coventry is not
in London AND knowing that it wasn't relevant for that particular child.
But if she didn't KNOW what was irrelevant, as well as the fact that it was
irrelevant, she couldn't do this at all.

I think that if we assume that knowing what's irrelevant is the most
important thing that there IS in teaching, we are left with what Bernstein
would call a strongly framed and strongly classified mode of teaching:
"things must be kept apart", instead of "things must be brought together".
Only if we KNOW all the knowledge to come, the knowledge which in the
present context seems irrelevant, do we have the possibility of teaching
with the next zone of development in mind.

That's all the difference between the zone of proximal development as a
DIAGNOSTIC of development (which is what Vygotsky actually said about it in
Problem of Age Section Three) and the zone of proximal development as a
DYNAMIC of development (which is how the editors of the Collected Works
rendered it). In one case, the teacher really has to know something that is
to the child entirely irrelevant to the present activity, namely the next
zone of development. In the other, the teacher just has to know what is
here and now and what operation of the action or action of the activity has
to come next.

David Kellogg
Macquarie University

On Wed, Feb 24, 2016 at 2:00 AM, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com>
wrote:

> Loved this quote from D. Heathcote:
>
> "knowing what is irrelevant is the most important thing in teaching"
> (around 10 minutes in).
>
> Words to teach (live?) by!
>
> -greg
>
> On Tue, Feb 23, 2016 at 7:14 AM, Robert Lake <boblake@georgiasouthern.edu>
> wrote:
>
> > ​Susan Davis has published a book that weaves LSV, Dorothy Heathcote and
> > CHAT
> > into one seamless, present tense unfolding of "rolling role". If anyone
> > would like to write a review of it I can get you a copy. It has been five
> > years since Heathcote's passing and I suspect her work will become more
> and
> > more  important in this era of standardized everything.
> >
> > *Robert Lake*
> >
> > https://www.sensepublishers.com/media/2709-learning-that-matters.pdf
> >
> >
> > For a sense of the dynamic of  Dorothy's pedagogy, scroll to about 5
> > minutes into this.
> >
> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owKiUO99qrw
> >
>
>
>
> --
> Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
> Assistant Professor
> Department of Anthropology
> 880 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
> Brigham Young University
> Provo, UT 84602
> http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson
>