SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY INFORMATION SHEET

http://usaoll.org/mobile/theory_workbook/social_learning_theory.htm
How to implement -external image elaboration%20theory%20diagram.jpg

The diagram above clearly explains the role of the individual, models and the learning environment to help facilitate learning in a social context. The child, in a secure learning environment is exposed to model behavior and through the learning process, both direct and indirect, the child learns from their peers.

Learning as social beings from birth, possibly before as the hearing a mothers (and other caregivers) voice begins by the third tri-mester of a pregnancy. As Educators our role is to teach children, not only the content, but also how to become successful members of our society. An important aspect of the education process is training our children to function socially. Many children in school today, both in Special Education and General Education, do not have the social skills to thrive independently in society. That said, using socially based educational techniques, all children, even those with social deficits, can learn tools on how to productively socialize in the school setting and in the community.

In the early years, Early Childhood Education, children are primarily learning from their social world, specifically from play. Children at a young age begin to use their imaginations, beginning with object symbolization and over time begin to develop complicated three and four-step play sequences that they imagined. Play, specifically dramatic play, is one area that all teachers can utilize to help bridge a gap. Dramatic play, encompasses a variety of different tools. Children can pretend a cardboard box is a boat, they can care for dolls, or they can play with puppets. An Educator could use puppetry on many different levels. The Educator can use puppets to retell a story or tell a social story ("An instructional technique in which students create or interpret narrative or visual illustrations that reflect typical social encounters." (McLeskey, et al., 2010). Social Stories can also be used to directly teach a skill that can then be translated to classroom and used by peers. Another strategy is using puppets act out good problem solving techniques. The appropriate behavior is modeled directly for all the children in the class and then can be implemented and help teach through peer modeling the appropriate behavior. This translates to the children using those same techniques independently and increasing their ability to self-regulate ("Strategies that students use to monitor and control their own behavior (e.g., to decrease inappropriate behaviors, increase appropriate behaviors)." (McLeskey, et al., 2010). In a child based learning environment, a group of children with varying abilities play cooperatively with each other, learning from each other each day.

As the child grows, educational techniques also grow, however, a social learning model is still a successful educational strategy to use. In later years, techniques such as Cooperative Learning ("A range of strategies in which students work together to learn and ensure that others in their group learn."), (McLeskey, et al., 2010), scaffolding ("The temporary support that teachers give students as they learn"), (McLeskey, J., Rosenberg), and peer models ("Using and engaging "peers in supporting students using activities such as peer tutoring or peer buddy systems."), (McLeskey, et al., 2010) can be used to facilitate learning in a social context. Cooperative Learning strategies use peers in heterogeneous groups to give lower performing students the ability to learn from the higher performing children, while teachers are also scaffolding ( "The temporary support that teachers give students as they learn.", (McLeskey, et al. 2010), new learning to ensure student success. Peer models can be used directly as in peer tutoring or indirectly as positive role models in the classroom.




Definitions -

Scaffolding - "The temporary support that teachers give students as they learn." (McLeskey, et al., 2010)
Self-regulation - "Strategies that students use to monitor and control their own behavior (e.g., to decrease inappropriate behaviors, increase appropriate behaviors)." (McLeskey, et al., 2010)
Cooperative Learning - "A range of strategies in which students work together to learn and ensure that others in their group learn." (McLeskey, et al., 2010)
Peer Models - Using and engaging "peers in supporting students using activities such as peer tutoring or peer buddy systems." (McLeskey, et al., 2010)
Social Stories - "An instructional technique in which students create or interpret narrative or visual illustrations that reflect typical social encounters." (McLeskey, et al., 2010)


Lesson plans -

Lesson plan on peer modeling and play based learning for Early Childhood Education.
JHU Lesson Plan.doc

Lesson plan on peer modeling and Cooperative Learning for Middle School students.
Lesson plan JHU MS.doc


Matching Student Needs -

Learning Environment
  • Student learning occurs between peers in the classroom environment.
  • Students must be involved in a learning community where they take an active role in their learning.
  • Educators foster an understanding that self-reliance is expected.
  • Educators apply student-centered learning curriculum.
  • Educators should encourage self-reliance and avoid the development of learned helplessness.
  • Educators need to make the subject matter relevant to the learner, regardless of the age.
  • Educators need to scaffold emotional learning as well as intellectual learning.
  • Educator should implement a variety of "Multiple Intelligences" in activities to reach a broad audience of learners.

Peer models
  • Have typical peers, who have a typical or higher ability than the "learner" in the classroom.
  • Facilitate (naturally) positive social interactions through play or group work which in turn help improve social and language ability of all children.
  • Children/students are engaged in learning and learning alongside classroom peers, regardless of ability.


Practical application -

Early Childhood Education

  • Dramatic play areas to increase play-based social interaction with peers, facilitated by teachers.
  • Expand on the children's' play. Make sure play is purposeful!
  • Expand on the children's language, especially social/emotional language naturally during play.
  • Use Social Stories to help teach social learning concepts.
  • Focus on Social/Emotional development (e.g., problem solving, responsibility, group work, empathy, etc.)
  • Engage children using all senses (e.g., sight, sound, touch, feel, smell)
  • Teach self-regulation techniques and use peers as models.

Secondary

  • Create cooperative work groups for children to work together toward a final product.
  • Use group instructional strategies such as 'Think, Pair, Share' and 'Jigsaw'.
  • Create social stories about how to interact in social situations.
  • Differentiated Instruction, targeting both teacher led and student led
  • Learning Centers, giving ownership over tasks completed at different stations.
  • Focus on Social/Emotional health (e.g., understanding wider social settings, character and moral development, empathy, group work, responsibility, social relationships, etc.)
  • Reinforce self-regulation techniques, use reward systems to increase chances of success.



Resources -

Social Development Theory
Social and self regulation


References -

Boyd, Brian A., Conroy, Maureen A., Asmus, Jennifer M., McKenney, L.W., Mancil, Richmond G. (2008). Descriptive Analysis of Classroom Setting Events on Social Behaviors of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Education and Training in Developmental Disabilities, Volume 43 (Number 2), 186 - 197.

Brophy, Jere. (2010). Classroom Mangagement as Socializing Students into Clearly Articulated Roles. Journal of Classroom Interaction. Volume 45, (Number 1). 41 - 45.

Huerta-Wong, Juan Enrique, Schoech, Richard. (2010). Experiential Learning and Learning Environments: The Case of Active Listening Skills. Journal Social Work Education, Volume 46 (Number 1), 85 - 101.

Mashburn, Andrew J., Justice, Laura M., Downer, Jason, T., Pianta, Robert C. (2009). Peer Effects on Children's Language Achievement During Pre-Kindergarten. Child Development, May/June 2009 Volume 80 (Number 3), 686-702.

McLeskey, James, Rosenberg, Michael S., & Westling, David L. (Eds). (2010). Inclusion, Effective Practices for All Students. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

Mellon, Nancy K., MS, Ouellette, MS, CCC-SLP, Greer, Tracy MSOTR/L, Gates-Ulanet, Patricia, PsyD. (2010). Achieving Developmental Synchrony in Young Children With Hearing Loss. Trends in Amplification, 13 (4), 223-240.

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