• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Critically evaluate the importance of active learning as an approach to planning & Teaching the foundation curriculum subjects

Extracts from this document...


Critically evaluate the importance of active learning as an approach to planning & Teaching the foundation curriculum subjects. As we enter a new and exciting time in education it is a time to reflect on recent change & reform within the education sector. In 1989 a shock wave was felt throughout schools with the introduction of the National Curriculum, this "marked a major change from the freedom to prescription in curriculum content, and from topics to subject-based teaching." ((Turner-Bisset, 2005, Pg.17) As a result of this change teachers began to feel pressurised to teach the exact content described within the curriculum, teaching became very formal in order to attain targets and the appropriate levels, this meant teaching in some cases lost its creativity. In 2000 the Foundation Stage Document was published, the ethos of this document placing the emphasis on learning through play. A view supported by theorists such as Piaget, Bruner and Vygotsky, Curtis & O'Hagan, (2003) state in their book Care and Education in Early Childhood..."he (Piaget) argued that children are active learners" Susan Isaacs (1929) also wrote that "play indeed is the child's work and the means by the way he or she develops and learns." However this principle of children learning through play was not continued throughout the primary curriculum. ...read more.


Conversely in this type of approach the learning is very one dimensional, although there are links to mathematical development, this, is only due to the subject matter not the teaching method as in the previously mentioned active learning approach. The very nature of active learning lends itself to the unknown quantity; children will often take something from the activity that was not planned for, however it is these moments which children really benefit from, these types of opportunities are often when children are making sense of learning which has previously occurred. In Piaget's terms this fits in to the assimilation and adaptation process found in his schema theory, adaptation takes place as people are driven by the urge to have things "fit together" or to be in what Piaget calls "equilibrium". (Curtis & O'Hagan 2003) "Schema theory would indicate that we need to provide a range of activities which allow children to work.... in very active ways, not merely reading words on a page, but engaging physically, mentally & emotionally with facts, concepts, skills and processes to make the new material part of their mental map of the world" (Turner-Bisset, 2005, pg.25) History is a subject that is often very closely linked with geography. Topics such as sea sides past and present lend themselves to cross curricular links between the two subjects. ...read more.


Even when assessing children through summative assessments it is still possible to use an active learning approach. Whilst assessing children's addition skills on teaching practice a sand sorting game was devised. Children had to find the sums buried in the sand and place them in the appropriate answer bucket, this was done under observation and a summative assessment was carried out, but instead of giving the child a standardised test, some fun and active participation was added. However active learning should not be the only approach used in schools, it is important to cater for children's differing learning styles, indeed it has been observed children who thrive off worksheets but this was a minority. It is essential to remember that, "In order to teach anything to anyone, one needs a broad pedagogical repertoire." (Turner-Bisset, 2005, pg.28) Excellence and Enjoyment (2003) has taken this idea on board, teachers must use a variety of approaches and styles to capture and stimulate children's imaginations. Children have so much energy and passion that is important teachers harness this spirit and use it to their advantage in the classroom. In the foreword of the document Charles Clarke (2003) writes, "Children learn better when they are excited and engaged - but what excites and engages them best is truly excellent teaching, which challenges them and shows them what they can do. When there is joy in what they are doing, they learn to love learning. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Developmental Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Developmental Psychology essays


    Nevertheless, this did not hinder Rachel's learning or the ability to achieve her learning objectives. The strengths of the teaching session included adequate preparation, the time allocated and a good mentor/student relationship. Its weaknesses were that the plan was too formal, the constraints of the environment and a lack of variation in the teaching strategies utilized.

  2. This curriculum plan is to be based on children aged between nought to two ...

    Enjoying finding out about the environment. Be acquiring a range of physical skills and gaining control of the body. This activity also fits in with the six week plan of animals Preparation: Picture cards of a chick and a hen, Sufficient amount of egg shells, Sufficient amount of raw and boiled egg, Water and cotton wool

  1. Play, curriculum and early learning

    It gives confidence and allows self- esteem to develop." (Pg.33, 1999) Children are able to have their own identity while dressing up. Also mathematical development is promoted as children could be making tea or dinner for their guest and count how many plates and cups are needed this is done without recognition from the children.

  2. Early Years Curriculum

    a reflective researcher and they stay with their class from the time they start to when they leave. * The children are seen as capable and inquisitive adults. Programs in Reggio are family centred. Loris's vision of an "education based on relationships" supports children's reciprocal relationships with other children, family, teachers, society, and the environment.

  1. Investigate the concepts of curriculum development.

    is instrumental in planning courses at Wakefield College and can often be considered as comprising of the following eight main components: * Identifying and analysing need * Stating course aims and objectives * Selecting course materials * Design teaching and learning strategies * Structuring the curriculum * Assessment * Planning

  2. Fractions teaching

    Fractions are also found in the Handling Data strand, when children learn about probability in years five and six or when they are interpreting pie charts towards the end of Key Stage 2. Progression in the NNS aims to equip children with the understanding and meanings behind mathematical representations, so

  1. Discuss and analyse the planning applicable to the curriculum for Foundation Stage.

    These six areas are aimed to help practitioners plan activities and experiences for children in their care, and also plan the learning environment for such activities to take place and provide a framework for the early year's curriculum. The planning of the Foundation Stage aims for the above areas of

  2. This assessment is to devise a medium term plan and to plan a range ...

    I am preparing this curriculum plan in the best way possible to promote the development in all areas. I have discussed with my placement supervisor about the suitability of my activities and also to have an incite on a curriculum plan already in order.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work