Talking and Working Together
Psychologists, curriculum developers, and reformers of mathematics and science education recommend active learning in which students in small groups talk and work together. Small groups provide an opportunity for students to construct their own knowledge in a way that develops conceptual learning and higher-order thinking skills. Noddings (1989) sees this latter school of thought as originating in the work of Dewey and the social constructivism of Vygotsky (1978). Educators and researchers belonging to the “constructivist” school of thought assume that suitable discourse or conversation within the small groups and/or a process of discovery is a prerequisite for conceptual learning.
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