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Mathematics learning Theories Essay Example

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Mathematics learning Theories

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In contrast, cognitivism presents the mind of a learner as being akin to a computer and learning to be a process dependent on an array of internal mental processes.As per Jean Piaget, the intellectual development in humans tends to follow a chronological sequence that comprises of a total of 4 sequential stages. These four stages enunciated by Piaget comprised of Sensorimotor found in the age group 0-2 years, Preoperational Stage found in the age group 2-7 years, Concrete Operational Stage found in the age group 7-11 years and Formal Operational Stage found in the age group 11-15 years (Flavell, 1963, p. During the Sensorimotor stage learners tend to develop faculties of memory, imitation and thought. During the Preoperational Stage, the child develops language and the ability to think in terms of symbols. During Concrete Operational Stage a child learns to solve hands on concrete problems and during Formal Operation Stage a child learns to solve formal abstract problems. Thereby, as per Jean Piaget’s theory, a child while being taught mathematical skills need to be exposed to such problems that correlate with the learning stage one is in. During preoperational stage a teacher could make the students recognize and memorize mathematical digits engraved on a flash card. For instance during Concrete Operational Stage a child should be made to solve concrete problems and should not be expected to solve abstract mathematical problems, as one lacks the mental capacity to do so. Similarly during the Formal Operation Stage a teacher could readily teach children to solve mathematical problems pertaining to Trigonometry and Set Theory requiring much abstract effort and thinking. In this stage the teacher could expect the students to understand and grasp the abstract figures pertaining to mathematical problems being drawn on the black board.As per the psychologist Lev Vygotsky, social interactions and culture play a salient role in the cognitive development and learning behaviour of a learner. According to Vygotsky, in a society the learning behaviour of a child is influenced in a systematic and intentional manner by the adults (Gates, 2001). For instance say in a class room a teacher is teaching a student as to how to solve quadratic equations and how to crack and understand them. The child tries to grasp the process while the teacher

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