Theory of cognitive development has been recast in terms of 2 factors: • The interest of different profiles of intellectual capacities (MI theory) • The new forms of expression and communication enabled globally by the new digital media.
Ad 1 Dissociation of various capacities MI theory emphasizes 2 dimensions that were minimized in Piegetian theory: • In MI theory various cognitive abilities (intelligences) may develop and brake down under different conditions. • MI theory pay attention to the fact that individuals can and do exhibit quite distinctive cognitive profiles. (Piegat – universal profile of cognitive development of children)
Constructivism • Pieget saw all of development as the unfolding of genetic predispositions in the human brains, as modulated by active experimentation in a relatively predictable environment • Individual learners construct mental models to understand the world around them.
Constructionism • Piagent’s ideas of constructivism were conceptualized with reference to learning in an increasingly digital era. • Cinstructionism- it holds that learning can happen most effectively when people are also active in making tangible objects in the real world.
Constructionism • „From constructivism theories of psychology we take a view of learning as reconstruction rather than as transmission of knowledge. Then we extend the idea of manipulative materials to the idea that learning is most effective when part of an activity the learner experiences as constructing a meaningful product” Papert
Logo became also a powerful tool for working with disabled youngsters, a population in which, as a physician-neuroscientist. • Working with computers, many of these young people could find a new significance for their efforts, an intellectual challenge that they might strive to overcome, and a feeling of having accomplished “good work”.Many of them are now active in digital world and integrated at different levels in society of knowledge.
Recently writer met one of his former Logo students with a mild mental retardation who was quite unable to do any arithmetic calculation but loved computers.Today he is in charge of the cash flow in a restaurant where he does data entry for different tables and services. He became an expert in the heuristics to find the exact item to put into the final account.
This case reinforces the idea that training with computers may lead some disabled individuals to find their way in life and may help to build bridges that overcome the impairment of a cognitive module, like mathematical intelligence in this case. • The core idea of constructionism is that we continuously build cognitive structures, and when they reach a certain stability, they become a platform for a new step.This important achievement opens new perspectives in the study of the relations between development and learning as dynamical systems.
As an example of what can be accomplished in a digital environment, writer describes an admittedly extreme case.Nico, a young Argentinian lad,had his right hemisphere removed by functional hemispherectomy when he was three years old in order to threat his severe epilepsy.The writer worked several years helping Nico use a computer at school and at home with MI. • With the help of a computer , writer tried to construct a bridge between Nico’s spatial and logical-mathematical intelligences.In one activity Nico used a Logo program so that he could do a logical-mathematical and a spatial activity. Today Nico is thriving in many aspects of his life.His life is remarkable example of the changes produced by neuroplasticity in the educated brain and a challenge to many traditional view of the developing mind.
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A digital intelligence? • Battro & Denham did some researches about the digital intelligence. The intelligenc use of a computer has deep roots in development and even in evolution. In particular, the debugging process, that is, the computing experience of correcting the errors of programming, is something essential in the construction of novelty and, more broadly, in the creative process
A digital intelligence? • The MI laid out by Gardner provides some keys for understanding the rapid and massive involvment with computers by children. In a very broad sense – cognitive, emotional, and moral. It could even include this „digital intelligence”
Conclusion It is clear that we need new cognitive skills to live and work in a digital environment. In this perspective, the impact od MI and constructionism, individually and jointly, may well grow in orders of magnitude. In recent years, research in experimental neurocognitive psychology, improved that we still know more about the learning brain than about the teaching brain.
Conclusion • Humans teach in a way that other animals do not. Children teach their elders now how to use a computer. In conclusion Piagets and MI theory are both involved in the digital world, but it is constantly developing. • We are possibility facting a new kind of evolution because education is changing our individual brains. Perhaps a new intelligence, a digital intelligence, is unfolding in the human species. We certainly need more research on this topic in order to understand our digital era.