Learning Theories Models of Reading Summary

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A summary of theories and models is an interesting factor that can establish a relationship between any cognitive learning processes. The ideas studied in this summary have opened many new thought processes that will accomplish greater learning and teaching techniques for the classroom. Students and teachers often want for the same outcomes but teachers are taught to teach under certain standards while students want to learn; but do not feel that their ideas or opinions have enough knowledge base and to stand-up to their teacher or peers standards of what the meaning of learning represents. Throughout this summary we will be discussing the constructivist, social development, and Piaget theories as well as the reading models.

Constructivist Theory

The Constructivist Theory is based that on how individuals learn. They construct their own perception of their knowledge base through ideas and experiences previously obtained. By becoming actively involved in our own formula for knowledge, we become the creator of how and what we want to learn. In other words, constructivism taps into the knowledge that triggers other areas of inquisitiveness.

In teaching the constructivist theory there are two views, the traditional classroom and the constructivist classroom. The traditional classroom emphasizes basic skills that also have a curriculum that is fixed. Repetitive learning is basic in a traditional classroom setting. The teacher's role is that of authority and the student's work mainly alone. In the constructivist classroom the student's opinions and ideas are valuable to everyone. The classroom is interactive because student's and teacher's work as a unit. Group work makes learning interesting and fun. Knowledge is based on experiences and students relate to learning more positively if they are experiencing the lessons in a positive or negative effort.

When students are presented with a question they continually investigate ideas that are reflective to discuss. Significant dialogue will be accomplished when the student is comfortable enough with their own set of ideas and are encouraged enough to engage in durable conversation with their peers. In the constructivist classroom, a teacher provides changing views of our world and the exploration of those views for students. Much collaboration is required for the learning process of students; this makes the students experts in their own education. It gives students ownership of what they are learning and retaining the information learned.

Social Development Theory

The idea of Social Development was originally discussed by Vygotsky. He believed that social interaction precedes development. He also believed that social development came from the zone of proximal development (ZPD) which expresses that children develop through engaging in social behavior. However, the More Knowledgeable Other (MKO) explains that anyone can present more knowledge of the material or task; these people are usually considered to me a teacher or possibly a peer that has a better understanding of the product. Although, people learn by observing other people and when they make a mistake and fail; we learn to make more cautious decisions which prove that the right choice is being made. When people are successful with their decisions they become more confident to continue on that same path. So through social development we learn to create proper decision making skills and social behaviors that are appropriate for society.

It has been historically known that teachers present students with information to increase their knowledge on studies. However, students tend to learn best when they have an active role in their own education. Classrooms and materials would need to be structured and be able to encourage students and teachers to collaborate with one another to increase the learning environment's social development. In today's classrooms collaboration has increased because of the use of technology. Social development learning has taken on a new life due to the internet and social networking sites; this has developed social interaction between people to become more frequent.

Piagetian Theory

Through the influence of Jean Piaget, psychology was given the theory of Cognitive Development. Piaget originally studied to be a biologist but he became interested in the development of children and the way they think. He was interested in how children of different ages process information differently. Piaget observed how one adapts to their environment and how behavior is used to control certain environmental factors. He began to observe how the balance of adaptation is constructed. He describes two processes of adaptation, assimilation and accommodation. These processes are used throughout life as we adapt to environmental schemes in an intricate approach.

Piaget went on to identify the four stages of cognitive development from children to adults. The Sensorimotor stage in infancy has six stages in itself, which demonstrates that intelligence is activated through motor activity. Knowledge is developing because it is based on physical experiences. Mobility allows children to develop intelligence and language skills. The Pre-operational stage in toddler and early childhood allows children the opportunity to develop their language skills through intelligence. Memory and imagination also begin to form at this stage. The Concrete operational stage is elementary and pre-teen; the development of operational thinking is developed in this stage. The Formal operational stage is observed in adolescence to adulthood. Abstract concepts help develop intelligence.

Therefore, he believed that development was motivated by one cognitive stage to the next stage. Although, studies of adolescence have showed that the cognitive development stage of a teenager is approximately 30 to 35 percent that achieve their formal operations. This helps provide the proper knowledge that everyone does not develop at the same rate or stage as their counterpart.

Models of Reading

The Top-down reading model states that the reader uses previous knowledge or experiences to comprehend the information read. The bottom-up model discusses that knowledge begins with the smallest syllable such as how phonics works. The beginning syllables are used then other parts are added onto the word to create a whole; then from there sentences are produced. The Interactive model expresses that both the top-down and bottom-up models are used. By using the Interactive model both models are combined to depict the best of both models in one model. This provides readers the ability to assemble meaning through the information formulated by all resources.

Indeed, these theories and models are an important aspect of the students learning process. Through, the power of learning student construct their knowledge based on what they are taught. A collaboration of information that is presented to students and teachers, accentuates evolving ideas that are based on experiences and the development of intelligence integration.