Gestalt Learning Theory

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Introduction. . . Definition of Learning Theory Conceptual framework in which knowledge is absorbed, processed, and retained during learning. Cognitive, emotional, and environmental influences, as well as prior experience, all play a part in how understanding, or a world view, is acquired or changed and knowledge and skills retained. 1. Behaviourism - Learning Theories Behaviourism is a worldview that assumes a learner is essentially passive, responding to environmental stimuli. The learner starts off as a clean slate (i.e. tabula rasa) and behaviour is shaped through positive reinforcement or negative reinforcement. Both positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement increase the probability that the antecedent behaviour will…show more content…
Gestalt psychology was developed in Germany in the early 1900s by Wolfgang Kohler and was brought to America in the 1920s. The German word Gestalt is roughly equivalent to the English configuration or organization and emphasizes the whole of human experience. Over the years, the Gestalt psychologists provided demonstrations and described principles to explain the way we organize our sensations into perceptions. Matt Wertheimer, one of the founding fathers of Gestalt Theory, observed that sometimes we interpret motion when there is no motion at all. For example: a powered sign used at a convenience store to indicate that the store is open or closed might be seen as a sign with "flashing lights". However, the lights are not actually flashing. The lights have been programmed to blink rapidly at their own individual pace. Perceived as a whole, the sign flashes. Perceived individually, the lights turn off and on at designated times. Another example of this would be a brick house: As a whole, it is viewed as a standing structure. However, it is actually composed of many smaller parts, which are individual bricks. People tend to see things from a holistic point of view rather than breaking it down into sub…show more content…
To design effective teaching environments, it believes one needs a good understanding of what children already know when they come into the classroom. The curriculum should be designed in a way that builds on the pupil's background knowledge and is allowed to develop with them. Begin with complex problems and teach basic skills while solving these problems. The learning theories of John Dewey, Maria Montessori, and David A. Kolb serve as the foundation of the application of constructivist learning theory in the classroom. Constructivism has many varieties such as active learning, discovery learning, and knowledge building, but all versions promote a student's free exploration within a given framework or structure. The teacher acts as a facilitator who encourages students to discover principles for themselves and to construct knowledge by working answering open-ended questions and solving real-world problems. To do this, a teacher should encourage curiosity and discussion among his/her students as well as promoting their autonomy. In scientific areas in the classroom, constructivist teachers provide raw data and physical materials for the students to work with and
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