Re: [xmca] zoped

Date: Mon Mar 20 2006 - 06:49:49 PST

Hello all interested zoped-heads!

LSV writes (Thought and Language, pp. 188-9) "Therefore the only good kind
of instruction is that which marches ahead of development and leads it; it
must be aimed not so much at the ripe as at the ripening functions. It
remains necessary to determine the lowest threshold at which instruction
in, say, arithmetic may begin, since a certain minimal ripeness of
functions is required. But we must consider the upper threshold as well;
instruction must be oriented toward the future, not the past."

I facilitate a boat building class with my students. When helping the
students use math it is never successful to remind them about a lesson
learned in math class. Rather I start with using the numbers and the
mathematical steps taken to reach the answer. This I see as the 'complex'
method of teaching. As instruction continues I fade back to using the
concrete method of pointing to marks on the tape measure and show the
actual divisions of these marks into the desired segments required to find
the center line of the boat or the board. Sometimes I need to get a string
and fold it in half and then show the measurement of the string on the tape
measure. Some students are at the level of devlepement of their scientific
understanding to use math to do the figuring. Some are not and need the
concrete method repeated many times before they grasp the use of math to do
the figuring. Some unfortunately have never progressed to the point of
being able to use math.


                      "Mike Cole"
                      <lchcmike who-is-at gmail. To: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <>
                      com> cc:
                      Sent by: Subject: Re: [xmca] zoped
                      xmca-bounces who-is-at web
                      03/20/2006 08:05
                      Please respond
                      to mcole; Please
                      respond to
                      "eXtended Mind,

Dear Just wondering.
I will enter into this discussion seriously when I get through the final
exam to be given later today and get home safely and then away
frrom the crush of instittuionalized academic like.

Lets see, if a teacher walks up to a child, kicks the child in the shins,
the child cries in pain, and the teacher laughs.. There's
an interaction.

If development is breaking away, perhaps such a zone would entail the child
throwing an inkwell at a teacher, injuring another child,
and being kicked out of school.

We have posted somewhere, or have somewhere. Seth Chaiklin's systematic
discussion of misuses of the idea of zoped. Other
discussions can be found in addison stone and in griffin and cole
and........... if this is meant as acongtribution to what and what should
not go into a set of putative examples of exemplary teaching/learning
interactions that might help us figurfe out what/when is a zoped
(according to this speech community) and why their occurrences are
apparently so restricted in classrooms (perhaps a disputable
remark?), Isuggest we start with work already done on XMCA to be more
specific than any interaction beftween teacher and child.

back as events allow

On 3/19/06, Cunningham, Donald James <> wrote:
> Since I sometimes play the role of "word police", could I ask about the
> zone of proximal development?
> It seems to me that the term is often used to characterize any
> between a teacher and a student. That would be a pretty vacuous use, not
> keeping with Vygotsky's basic insight, IMHO. As the page of exemplary
> is being built, could we talk about the criteria for determining whether
> something qualifies? Did Socrates create a zoped with (I assume you
> one with not for) the slave boy? Did Jesus (or Mohammad or whoever)
create a
> zoped? How about the teacher in "Dead Poet Society"? The former coach at
> Indiana University, Bob Knight?
> Just wondering........djc
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