A Cultural Constructivist Approach to the Management of Change in Underachieving or Problem Pupils

1994.第5卷第1期(Vol. 5 No. 1).pp. 43–50

A Cultural Constructivist Approach to the Management of Change in Underachieving or Problem Pupils




A version of this article was presented at the Eighth Annual International Conference of the Educational Research Association of Singapore, in November, 1994. The cultural constructivist perspective presented was first developed for use with tertiary students and as reported in this article adapted for use with primary school pupils. The context of use included observations of a specialist primary school support teacher whose designation included the provision of support to underachieving and behavioral problem pupils. A cultural constructivist approach has been found to an extremely valuable tool for teachers concerned with developing management programs based upon the individual needs of children. The approach required the teacher to look beyond the resultant learning or behavior and examine, from the pupil's perspective, the contexts and causes from which pupil understandings and behavior have been developed. The approach further requires of the teachers to approach support with a constructivist learning ideology, features which include: the belief that socio-cultural contexts influence pupil understanding; that individual pupils are in control of their learning and behavior; and as such pupils must be supported in taking responsibility for any change. The elicitation of socio-cultural influenced, personal constructed views of language, teaching, learning and significant individuals within the individual's educative cultures, required techniques which facilitate not only the elicitation process but which maintain focus attention on the pupil at all times. Thus avoiding the teacher imposing their own interpretations or taking control away from the pupil. This article documents such a support process and cites the implications such support has for educators at all levels of instruction.