Thu. Nov 26th, 2020

A reflection on my challenged assumptions

Darvesh Karim

Lifelong learning is a continuous process, and it should continue to refresh and update our understanding and knowledge. This process sometimes challenges our knowledge and understanding about different phenomenon. This piece of reflection is the confession of two assumptions I had previously, which were challenged by reading two articles.

Firstly, I had a perception that a child learns according to his/her mental capacity gradually but after going through an article ‘A theory of teaching as assisted performance’ written by Roland Tharp and Ronald Gallimore, in which specifically they discuss about the zone of proximal development in short ZPD. This knowledge came to me and of-course it challenged my previous assumption and convinced me that no doubt the child learns according to his/her mental level ‘gradually’ however, the ability to solve problems by his/her own use to be in a ‘slow motion process’. The writer ensures that this slow motion process of learning can be accelerated further by the assistance of teachers, parents and more capable peers. So in between the child’s individual capacity of knowledge and assisted capacity of knowledge is assumed as ZPD. Through this process the development process increases rapidly. This process continues throughout the life for learning new knowledge and skills.

Secondly, I had another assumption which was also challenged and I had to accommodate the new concept and knowledge and had to build-on it during my university and independent studies. It was my understanding and assumption, as it was taught to me in school life that any child use to be a blank piece of paper mentally and for his/her development, parents, teachers and the environment play vital roles to add new information and knowledge. While, the new concept of different smartnesses or the multiple intelligences of the child is to be kept in mind during the teaching learning process. As it is very much clear that initially every body is quite different from each other and this difference has been categorized and presented as multiple intelligence theory by dividing the abilities to different groups like, word smart, picture smart, body smart , music smart, people smart and self-smart etc. This understanding came to me through the article ‘The Foundations of the Theory of Multiple Intelligences’, written by Thomas Armstrong.

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