ERIC Number: ED370888
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994
A Constructivist/Reflective Paradigm: A Model for the Early Childhood Program at Tuskegee University.
Noori, Kathryn K.
The Early Childhood Program in the Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Administration at Tuskegee University (Alabama) is described as a convergence of Jean Piaget's constructivism and John Dewey's progressivism. It is designed to provide preservice teachers with experiences that promote reflective practice and that view the learner as an autonomous, inquisitive thinker. This paper discusses the program's philosophical assumptions, which are based on learning as a process of knowledge construction, not knowledge recording or absorption, and on the importance of reflection as a means of learning from experience. Program components that are believed to foster reflective thinking include: dialogue; learning through active participation; learning from practicing in actual situations; and reflecting through videotaping lessons, journal writing, and planning. Three interrelated elements of the developmentalist tradition of reflective teaching are discussed, emphasizing focused observation of children's behavior and the creation of learning environments that support children's development and interests, encouraging students to adopt an experimental attitude towards practice, and placing a premium on the artistic aspect of teaching. Feedback from students is reported, providing evidence that students are internalizing the program's basic tenets, are involved in problem-solving, and are reflecting on and questioning their practice. (Contains 32 references.) (JDD)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A