chapter  2
22 Pages

How Constructivist Assumptions Guide Practice

Although the principles of constructivist practices and their roles in children’s learning are the focus of this chapter, the children and their thinking are at the heart of that focus. As constructivist teachers, we study, make decisions, and refl ect on the nature of the learner and what the learner can do rather than beginning with the curriculum or content within that curriculum. Because of this perspective, we view curriculum as a series of dynamic decisions and assumptions we make about children, their day-to-day learning, and the content they are studying. We continually test these assumptions and decisions through the learning environments and experiences that we design for children. If we defi ne ourselves as constructivist teachers, then we recognize that learning is an internal process that begins with the study of the child and his or her interactions with objects. Teachers can be constructivists no matter what expectations, curriculum, philosophy, or standards a school system or program places on them.