Synopses & Reviews
For more than a quarter century, the polemics surrounding educational reform have centered on two points of view: those that favor a "progressive" child-centered form of education, and those that would prefer a return to a more structured, teacher-directed curriculum that emphasizes basic knowledge and skills. Vygotsky's social constructivist theory offers an alternative solution, placing stress on coconstruction of knowledge by more and less mature participants engaging in joint activity. This theory offers semiotic mediation as the primary means of obtaining knowledge, whereby the less mature participants can seek solutions to everyday problems by using resources existing in society. In addition to using illustrative examples from classroom studies, this book provides a comparative analysis of the theories and complementary developments in works by Vygotsky and the linguist M.A.K. Halliday. This unique volume will be of tremendous benefit to researchers in the fields of education, sociolinguistics, and psychology.
"An important contribution. . . . Dialogic Inquiry is a challenging book to read, both because it raises serious questions about many of the assumptions underlying cognitive science and because it tackles difficult theoretical questions without avoiding their complexity. . . Wells has demonstrated. . . that the sociocultural perspective has a great deal to offer our understanding of thinking, knowing, language and learning." Contemporary Psychology
A view of Vygotsky's unique vision of education.
Vygotsky's unique vision of education, from a social constructivist point of view is presented here, with illustrative examples from classroom studies between teacher and child. This unique volume will be of tremendous benefit to the field of education, as well as sociolinguistics, psychology and researchers.
For more than a quarter of a century, the polemics surrounding educational reform have centered on two points of view: those who favor a 'progressive' child-centered form of education, and those who would prefer a return to a more structured, teacher-directed curriculum, which emphasizes basic knowledge and skills. This volume on Vygotsky presents the alternative solutions that he explored to reach a compromise.
Table of Contents
Conventions of transcription; Introduction; Part I. Establishing the Theoretical Framework: 1. The complementary contributions of Halliday and Vygotsky to a 'language-based theory of learning'; 2. In search of knowledge; 3. Discourse and knowing in the classroom; Part II. Discourse, Learning, and Teaching: 4. Text, talk, and inquiry: schooling as semiotic apprenticeship; 5. Putting a tool to different uses: a reevalution of the IRF sequence; 6. From guessing to predicting: progressive discourse in the learning and teaching of science; 7. Using the tool-kit of discourse in the activity of learning and teaching; 8. Making meaning with text: a genetic approach to the mediating role of writing; Part III. Learning and Teaching in the ZPD: 9. On learning with and from our students; 10. The zone of proximal development and its implications for learning and teaching ; Appendices; References; Indexes.