The modified approach, developed in the last paper is that the child’s learning behavior should incorporate the ideas of Piaget, Vygotsky and the behavioral approach. The learning process should be a holistic approach and a single theory should not be relied upon as the child goes through the learning process.
Piaget and his successors believed that the child was capable of learning through observation and experimentation, thus being able to make sense out of the environment and not through reinforcement of instructions as contended by the behavioral theories (Flemming, 2004). On the other hand, Vygotsky advocates significant interaction during the learning process. He believed that an individual is best suited to learn when he/she exists in a social-cultural environment. Through interactions of individuals with their peers in the society, they were believed to learn more effectively if they existed individually. According to Vygotsky, learning occurs when an individual performs tasks under adult guidance, as well as in collaboration with other peers, and not merely by receiving instructions. The behavioural approach assumes that the development of a child’s behaviour results from learning, which is reinforced from the early stages of a child’s development, rather than through experiments and observations that the child is engaged in as he/she grows up. The behavioural approach supports the claim that that learning is a continuous process that occurs from childhood and not through the various stages, such as assimilation, accommodation, and the equilibrium of learning (Ward, 2010).
The modified approach is that the child’s learning behavior should incorporate the ideas of Piaget and Vygotsky, as well as the behavioral approach. Learning cannot be entirely isolated from the influences of the environment, as the observations and the experiment put forward by Piaget does not occur in isolation with the environment. As the child receives instructions and is allowed to continue learning through the various stages, he/she should not be isolated from the social setting that will enable him/her to learn more as he/she interacts with more experienced peers.
The biological basis of learning and memory views humans as pattern seekers. Sometimes, they are playful pattern seekers as when they doodle, work puzzles, or daydream. Sometimes, they are purposeful pattern seekers, such as when they try to find answers to things, plan ahead, or resolve problems. Well-tested and research-based programs are designed to prepare children for the scientifically and mathematically complex societies of the 21st century. Such programs are based upon sound scientific knowledge about how the brain functions, how humans think and learn, and how this knowledge relates to the understanding of the world. In general, enriched environments increase the number of brain connections. Connections are created when an individual becomes curious about something and is free to explore that curiosity. The brain makes the new connectors available for the dispensation of sensory data and for integrating that data into previous knowledge.
Enriched environments, varied experiences, and aroused interest around a central topic stimulate the production of connectors, thus allowing for more storage options in response to the experience. Even a slight change in a learner, such as changing to a new seat in the classroom, will cause the brain to generate new dendritic branches and spines, as it attempts to integrate the new perspective and new relationships that the learner experiences among objects and people in the classroom. The brain adapts itself in order to cope with changes it encounters in its environment. Through this process, learning takes place (Turkeltaub, 2004). In line with the modified approach, the biological basis of learning and memory depends on the interaction of the learner and their environment to enhance understanding of concepts. In addition, adult guidance and collaboration with other peers is crucial for the success of the biological basis of learning and memory.
Self-regulate learning is best understood through the works of Bandura. Bandura defined human functioning as the relations between person, environment and behaviour. Specifically, self-regulation accentuates the reciprocal determinism of the surroundings on the person, facilitated through behaviour. A person’s variables include diverse self-processes that interrelate with the surroundings through one’s actions. For instance, Bandura’s self-reinforcement practices in the Social Learning Theory (SLT) are prevalently motivational. These motivational aspects include evaluative aspects of performance, valuations of activities, personal standards and attributions. However, self-regulation does not take place without the contact of the individual with the environment. Although these contextual elements may play a minor role than the human processes, these contacts are crucial to the self-regulation practice (Dinsmore, 2008).
Motivation is one of the most powerful factors that impact student learning Motivated students possess some unique characteristics that are absent in other students. Their main interest is mastery of skill or the content. They are also willing to take on challenging tasks beyond current capability. Motivated students view mistakes as learning opportunities, rather than evidence of lack of competence (Svinicki, 2005). Teachers can affect student motivation in ways that either facilitate or impede learning. When students ascribe higher valence to ambitions in the far future and higher instrumental significance to studying hard for achieving goals in the distant future, they will be more persistent in their daily study and obtain better academic results.
With the discussed approaches, we can come up with a modified approach to achieving the desired learning outcome. A holistic approach would combine the biological basis of learning and memory, as well as motivation and self-regulation in learning. The common feature in the modified is the influence of the surroundings to the learning experience of the students. The biological basis of learning and memory is used to design programs to prepare children for scientifically and mathematically complex tasks in their learning environments. When students are exposed to enriched environments, varied experiences, and aroused interest around a central topic, connectors are produced, thus allowing for more storage options in response to the change. This would be achieved by introducing new patterns in the learning environment. For example, changes in the sitting positions, shifting to a new room or having a different teacher. Memory and understanding of concepts is enhanced through the interaction of the learner and their environment. In the modified approach, self-regulate learning integrates person characteristics with the surroundings to enhance the learning experience of the individual. These motivational aspects include evaluative aspects of performance, valuations of activities, personal standards and attributions. Although the self-regulated learning mainly advocates the participation of the individual, the environment in which they operate also plays a crucial role in the process of learning. The modified approach also incorporates the motivation factor in achieving desired learning outcomes. All other factors being constant, the success in learning depends on the motivation of the individual. For example, failure sparks different reactions from students depending on their motivation. Less motivated students will perceive it as proof of inability, while others will view it as a chance to learn something new.
The modified approach developed in this paper may not be consistent with the views of other authors. This does not render it entirely inapplicable. The aspect of motivation and enriched environments cannot be dismissed, as far as reinforcement of learning outcomes is concerned. The modified approach results in the desired learning outcomes, such as the enhancement of understanding of the scientifically and mathematically complex societies of the 21st century. Therefore, modified approach is applicable in certain situations.