Free «The Relations between Education and Growth of Children» Essay Sample

Education and learning refers to the process of acquiring knowledge or gaining a number of skills (Mathis, Cotton, and Sechrest 8). From the psychological perspective, education and learning refers to modification of behavior by going through numerous experiences. However, growth and development refer to a result, which is significant either to an individual or the society at large. This paper aims at examining the relations that exist between education and growth of children. To achieve this aim, the paper will analyze critically Vygotsky’s work Interaction between Learning and Development.

In Vygotsky’s argument, there are two main ways of acquiring education. The first way is through having social interactions. The second way is through language (Gauvain, Mary, & Michael Cole 30). By means of language, human beings are able to interact with each other socially and share the personal experiences they have with others. Vygotsky is notes that the thoughts of a person and their speech undergo changes very frequently. In the case of a child, on the initial stages, a child’s way of gaining education is seen as inter psychological. This implies that a child gains education by interacting with other individuals at the social level. Later, the education gained by the child changes to intra psychological. In other terms, this means that the education remains in the brain of the child making the child start mastering it on a personal level. In summary of this argument by Vygotsky, the interaction between children and other people helps them to grow and gain a better understanding of their environment. This is what is referred to as gaining education.

Importance of Education for Children

In Vygotsky’s view, in regard to education, it is very important to consider each child’s individually due to the fact that every child has their own distinct level of understanding. Therefore, this implies that skills required for learning are not universal for all children. Vygotsky argues that education is aimed at generating and influencing growth. The argument proves that internalization of one’s culture and developing social relationships are crucial in relation to social learning (Gauvain, Mary, & Michael Cole 33). Children are expected to make use of experiences they have had in the past and education they acquired before when to they want to clearly understand and accept new experiences. It can be concluded that this argument by Vygotsky implies that a child’s family or home environment where they grow and the culture they practice influences the education of the child.

The skills a child has in terms of language are important in helping the child to understand ideas newly introduced to them and connecting the ideas to experiences that the child has had in the past. When a child finally internalizes a number of skills, he or she defines their behavior. For this reason, Vygotsky argues strongly that speech and a child’s thoughts are closely related. In his view, cognitive development of a child is determined by language (Mathis, Cotton, and Sechrest 18). Children are taught using language and words while they internalize and interpret the message to themselves in their brains and act on it. The argument by Vygotsky presented above concludes that with language supported by speech, children are able to communicate with each other as well as with other people. These are the roots for gaining skills for critical thinking as well as getting new education.

How Children Acquire Education

Education for children is dictated by the need of acquiring maturity mentally as well as physically. However, education is also influenced by the experiences children go through. This means that a child’s growth comes before the child’s acquiring of education. Vygotsky argues that thinking in higher order is influenced by education. To illustrate this, Vygotsky uses an idea that he calls “Zone of Proximal Development” (Wubbels, den Brok, and van Tartwijk 27). In his statement, Vygotsky describes the process of acquiring education as being determined by the space flanked by actual development and potential development. Actual development is when children are able to solve problems on their own while potential development is when children rely on other people in order to solve problems. Using Vygotsky’s argument provided above, it can be concluded that acquiring education takes place depending on the child’s level of understanding.

How to Successfully Educate Children

Vygotsky describes people who teach children as people who have greater understanding of tasks and various concepts. These people could be adults or peers. According to Vygotsky, in order to educate children, such people should engage in dialogues with the children in a collaborative way. This can be achieved by enhancing interest in students as well as engaging them in the education process. Interest is something else to highly consider in pairing competent children with children that are less competent (Wubbels, den Brok, and van Tartwijk 29). Through this, children who have less competence will be motivated into learning. Through imitation, children are able to learn. Considering the argument raised by Vygotsky, it can be stated that teachers play a crucial role in regard to guiding the activities carried out by children. Children learn how to do things by observing how the teachers do it and from being encouraged to do them by their teachers.

Giving assignments to children helps in assessing whether the child has mastered the skill being introduced to them. According to Vygotsky, a child should be taught how to write before they get to the age of going to school. At this time, a child’s brain has the ability to stretch and accommodate all new information that is introduced to him/her. Vygotsky states that to a child, spoken speech can be turned into symbols by drawing. It would also be important to help children understand tools and the existing technologies (Gauvain, Mary, & Michael Cole, pg 34). Therefore, this implies that allowing and teaching children how to use phones and computers would help in educating them due to the fact that technology has a direct influence on how a human being thinks. In such a way, Vygotsky argues that children should be taught things that challenge them and help them to stretch their competence. Hence, it can be concluded that Vygotsky believes that children should be given opportunities that help them to apply skills that they already possess to the challenging situations that can face in life. This means that interaction of children with other people should be encouraged.

How the Society Is Involved in Helping Children Grow and Educating Them

Analyzing Vygotsky’s view of society, it is evident that cultural practices are taught by society. This is what helps many people in developing their minds. Children are able to grow and learn by having interactions with other people socially. For this reason, language is so crucial in helping children to be able to communicate with other people and making use of the environment they live in. This view proves that Vygotsky looks at society as a laboratory for analyzing and improving the psychology of human beings. It is important to note that Vygotsky does not recommend any special environments for children to be given education from (Wubbels, den Brok, and van Tartwijk 27). In such a way, people argue that life educates children in better than even going to a school. Though, it might be wrong to argue in that line though. Vygotsky talks of the society having its interactions that take place in school environments since in schools, all societies are represented. Vygotsky has an opinion that having a classroom setting means that there is organization of the social form. With such interaction, children are able to change to their way of thinking. Vygotsky believes that for children, education starts from home, but their mental functions achieve a high level after going through school. When analyzing the argument by Vygotsky provided above, it is in line to conclude that children gain their first education from the society they come from. This is where they are taught how to speak and how to relate with other people. When the children start going to school, it becomes the place where they are taught skills of developing the society at large.

Who in Society Acquires Education?

Considering Vygotsky’s statement, every individual in society gets educated since no one is able to run away from being a part of any society from their childhood. This explains why all countries in the world practice education in a social way. The environments that children are subjected to on every stage of their life helps them in learning new skills and ways in society. Through socialization, cultures are transmitted to children in two ways. The first way is deliberate when children are taught various skills by people who are more skilled than them. The second way is through unintentional methods. Children are able to see and listen to what people who are older than them are saying or what they are doing (Wubbels, den Brok, and van Tartwijk 17). This proves that education acquired by children as well as the process of learning have a symbiotic form of relationship. It can be said that the argument by Vygotsky implies that every individual in society gets a chance for education whether they want to acquire it or not. Through unintentional education, people are able to learn cultural practices of the society they come from while through intentional learning, people are taught detailed and higher skills of survival in society.

Though schooling can be seen as similar to education, it involves a formal way of teaching. In schooling, a specialist in a given field gives instructions to students and explains to them various subjects and skills. In Vygotsky’s view, children with disabilities should also be given an opportunity to learn with other students. This would help the disabled children in a great way to be motivated and have social interactions. In his argument, Vygotsky notes that separation of disabled children from other children makes them learn skills that will not benefit them in future when they are interacting and relating with the larger society. This is what Vygotsky calls the inclusion model. In his considerations, Vygotsky also analyzed whether a disabled child was really at a disadvantage of understanding what they were being taught. In his view, having a disability did not imply that the child was not fully developed. It only meant that the child had developed in a different way from their peers (Gauvain, Mary, & Michael Cole, pg 33). From an analysis of Vygotsky’s arguments, it can be concluded that having disabled children learning in the same class with other students helps them in building esteem and improving their ability to understand. It also helps them to understand that they are not less developed than the other children. The only difference between them is the way they were physically created. Vygotsky emphasizes the strong need for having a trainer who understands the needs of all children, both disabled and normal.

Why People Argue as They Grow

According to Vygotsky, people engage in arguments due to being a part of constant struggle for becoming the most dominant group. This might be related to gender, beliefs in religion, or even racial difference. Those people who are seen as powerful in the groups that have dominance are mandated with creating rules and identifying new opportunities that would lead their group to success. For this reason, powerful people continue to be more powerful while the groups that complain of being oppressed are exposed to oppression even more. The situation results in monopoly of power, allocation of privileges and exercising of authority. From this argument, it is clear that growth occurs on stages, which are distinct and can be measured (Gauvain, Mary, & Michael Cole 35). Therefore, when analyzing children, it would be important to examine what they have as opposed to what they lack. In such a case, the only difference between the way a child thinks and the way an adult thinks is the quality of their thoughts but not the quantity of their thoughts. From the argument by Vygotsky discussed above, it can be concluded that arguments are provoked by differences in people’s way of understanding their capabilities and the willingness of people to take care of their weaknesses.

Difference between Having Education and Having Beliefs

Vygotsky introduced an argument, according to which when people are born, they are not allocated specific functions. However, the culture one is raised in and the social patterns the individual practices dictates the functions an individual will be responsible for. Vygotsky believes that the intellectual capacity of a child is determined by the culture a child is brought up in. He further argues that children adapt to any environment they are raised in depending on the interpretations they have of the environment as well as the perceptions they hold about the environment. In this view, it is right to conclude that children are not given birth with education. It is also reasonable to note that education relies on social relations in a great way. This means that, as an individual grows, they get more opportunities to interact with other people, which results in the individual gaining education.

For Vygotsky, a child acquires education by going through a number of experiences, interacting with other individuals as well as the environment the child is raised in. However, he agrees with the fact that beliefs are only instilled on a child or any other individual by the individual’s culture or by the way the child is brought up by his/her parents. According to Vygotsky, concepts appear and shape themselves through interaction of individuals in a bid to introduce a solution to a certain problem (Gauvain, Mary, & Michael Cole 35). Therefore, it is right to look at a concept as a crucial part in the intellectual process. Analyzing the argument by Vygotsky, formation of a concept involves activities, which are constantly changing. For this reason, a child will always rely on the perceptions they have in order to create a distinction of objects that are appearing the same or different to them. Thus, the child takes their perception of the objects as the reality about these objects. From the argument above, it can be concluded that education for a child is acquired through experiences in life as well as through training. However, a child can also receive education through observing what other people are doing and interpreting it to themselves how it should be done.

Conclusion

In the research paper, the relations that exist between education and growth of children have been addressed clearly by looking at Vygotsky’s work Interaction between Learning and Development. Vygotsky argues that there are two main ways of acquiring education. In his presentation, the first way of acquiring education is through having social interactions while the second way is through language. This form of argument implies that a child gains education by interacting with other individuals at a social level. According to Vygotsky, interaction requires language. Using language, human beings are able to interact with each other socially and share the personal experiences they have with others.

Vygotsky further observes that a child’s family or home environment where they grow and the culture they practice influence their education. At the same time, with language supported by speech, children are able to communicate with each other as well as with other people. These types of communication in children are the preconditions for gaining skills for critical thinking as well as gaining education. Of note is that Vygotsky documents that acquiring education for children takes place depending on the child’s level of understanding. Therefore, it is important for teachers to realize that they have a very crucial role to play in regard to guiding the activities carried out by children due to the fact that children learn how to do things by observing how the teachers do it and from being encouraged to do them by their teachers. The society is not to be reluctant either due to the fact that children gain their first education from the society they come from. This is where they are taught how to speak and how to relate with other people. When the children move to school, they are taught skills of developing the society at large.

 
   

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