Constructionist learning object
The constructist Oren Zuckerman (2006, in preparation) defines a learning object as “specifically designed to promote learning through hands-on interaction. They are popular materials in early childhood education, at school and at home.”
- construction kit (should be merged with this article)
- learning object
- cognitive tool and cognitive artifact
- Fröbel gifts
Zuckerman traces the history of learning objects back to Locke who in turn influenced three traditions:
- The "Experimenting" movement" (Rousseau - Pestalozzi - Froebel). “Froebel's artifacts are construction kits, building materials, that promote activities that involve design and model building. His artifacts help children understand the physical world by making models of physical things, his artifacts engage children in an expressive activity, letting them express their own ideas through design and construction” (p.6)
- The "Simplified Reality" movement (Rousseau - Dewey): “Dewey did not design Learning Objects, but he made it clear what would be a good learning artifact based on his views on learning environments: a simplification of real life. So good Learning Objects should help children feel a part of the adult world, the real world. Dewey's views created a revolution in early childhood environments. Children-size real-world artifacts were developed, like kitchen appliances, kitchen tools, plates, cups, and play food.” (p.6)
- The "Intelligent Hand" movement (Condillac - Itard - Seguin - Montessori): “Montessori's artifacts are about abstract concepts, not the physical world. Each of her artifacts carefully designed to represent a single abstract concept. The most dominant design guideline in her works is 'isolation of properties'. She wanted to make sure that when children interact with one of her materials, the hands-on manipulation process will help them 'absorb' the abstract concept through physical interaction alone, independently, with no teachers guidance, and without any real-world analogy (like Froebel's physical analogies: a house, a train, a tree etc.)” (p.6)
From these traditions Zuckerman derived three major categories of learning objects and toys:
- Zuckerman, Oren (2006, in preparation), Historical Overview and Classification of Traditional and Digital Learning Objects MIT Media Laboratory, 20 Ames Street, Cambridge, MA 02139. PDF - CiteSeer Abstract.
- Zuckerman, Oren (2010). Designing digital objects for learning: lessons from Froebel and Montessori, International Journal of Arts and Technology 3 (1) 124-135. (Access restricted).
- References from the Zuckerman 2006 article
- Dewey, J. (1897), My Pedagogic Creed, in The School Journal, Volume LIV, Number 3.
- Dewey, J. (1938) Experience and Education, New York: Collier Books.
- Doyle, Michele Erina and Smith K. Mark (1997) "Jean-Jacques Rousseau on education", The encyclopaedia of informal education HTML
- Elumeze, N., and Eisenberg, M. (2005). SmartTiles: Designing Interactive "Room-Sized" Artifacts for Educational Computing Children, Youth and Environments 15(1): 54-66.
- Fröbel, F. (1826) On the Education of Man (Die Menschenerziehung), Keilhau/Leipzig: Wienbrach
- Ichida H., Itoh Y., Kitamura Y., Kishino F. (2004). ActiveCube and its 3D Applications, IEEE VR 2004, Chicago, IL, USA.
- Itard, J.M.G. (1962). The wild boy of Aveyron. Excerpt from Indiana University's 'Human Intelligence' Website: http://www.indiana.edu/~intell/itard.shtml
- Kilpatrick H. William, in his introduction to Heinrich Pestalozzi (1951) The Education of Man - Aphorisms, New York: Philosophical Library.
- Knight, I. F., The Geometric Spirit (1968). Reproduced from The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition, Condillac, Étienne Bonnot de.
- Lane, H.L. (1976). The wild boy of Aveyron. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
- LEGO Mindstorm, http://mindstorms.lego.com
- Locke J. 1693. Some thoughts concerning education, London.
- Locke J., 1698, London, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Book II, Chapter I
- Montessori, M. (1916) The Montessori Method, New York: Schocken Books (1964 edition)
- Montessori, M. (1949) The Absorbent Mind, New York: Dell (1967 edn.)
- Montessori, M. (1952) Kinder sind anders, Klett-Cotter, Stuttgart 1952. See also at http://www.media-versand.de/forum/mmo-neu.html , 'Polarisierung der Aufmerksamkeit zur Normalisierung des individuellen'.
- Muller T., Schneider R. (2002). Montessori: Educational Material for Early Childhood and Schools.
- Pestalozzi, J. H. (1894) How Gertrude Teaches her Children translated by Lucy, E. Holland and
- Frances C. Turner. Edited with an introduction by Ebenezer Cooke. London: Swan Sonnenschein.
- Resnick, M., Martin, F., Sargent, R., and Silverman, B. (1996). Programmable Bricks: Toys to Think With. IBM Systems Journal 35, 3, 443-452.
- Rogers, Y., Scaife, M. Gabrielli, S., Harris, E., and Smith, H. (2002) A Conceptual Framework for Mixed Reality Environments: Designing Novel Learning Activities for Young Children. Presence, Dec 2002
- Rousseau, J, J. (1762) Émile, London
- Seguin, The Museum Of Disability History online exhibit, www.museumofdisability.org/exhibits_pantheon4.asp
- Smith K. Mark, (1997), 'Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi', the encyclopaedia of informal education, http://www.infed.org/thinkers/et-pest.htm
- Wyeth Peta, Purchase C. Helen. (2002). Tangible programming elements for young children. Proceeding of CHI 02.
- Zuckerman O., Arida S., Resnick M. (2005). Extending Tangible Interfaces for Education: Digital Montessori-Inspired Manipulatives . In Proceedings of CHI '05, ACM Press.
- Zuckerman O., Resnick M. (2003). System Blocks: A Physical Interface for System Dynamics Simulation . In Proceedings of CHI '03, ACM Press, pp. 810-811.