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经济学人双语版:现在你要知道

2015-01-28    来源:网络    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

经济学人:现在你要知道

Educational psychology教育心理学

Now you know现在,你要知道

When should you teach children, and when should you let them explore?
什么时候应该告诫孩子,和什么时候应该让孩子自己摸索?

IT IS one of the oldest debates in education. Should teachers tell pupils the way things are or encourage them to find out for themselves? Telling children "truths" about the world helps them learn those facts more quickly. Yet the efficient learning of specific facts may lead to the assumption that when the adult has finished teaching, there is nothing further to learn—because if there were, the adult would have said so. A study just published in Cognition by Elizabeth Bonawitz of the University of California, Berkeley, and Patrick Shafto of the University of Louisville, in Kentucky, suggests that is true.
这是教育界最古老的争论之一。老师应该告诉学生事物的本质还是要鼓励学生自行摸索?告诉孩子们世界的真理”有助于他们更快地了解现实。对具体事物的高效率学习也许导致孩子们会有这个假设”的假设。当长辈停止教育时,那就不需要进一步的学习了——因为如果有的话,长辈们也应该应经告诉他们了。伯克利加州大学的Elizabeth Bonawitz和路易斯维尔大学的Patrick Shafto刚刚共同发表在《认知》中的研究表明这是对的。

Dr Bonawitz and Dr Shafto arranged for 85 four- and five-year-olds to be presented, during a visit to a museum, with a novel toy that looked like a tangle of coloured pipes and was capable of doing many different things. They wanted to know whether the way the children played with the toy depended on how they were instructed by the adult who gave it to them.
Dr Bonawitz和Dr Shafto安排了85名四到五岁的小朋友带着看起来像一团乱七八糟的着色的管子且能够做成不同形状的新奇玩具参观博物馆。他们想知道孩子们玩这玩具的方式是否会取决于给他们玩具的大人们的提示。

One group of children had a strictly pedagogical introduction. The experimenter said "Look at my toy! This is my toy. I'm going to show you how my toy works." She then pulled a yellow tube out of a purple tube, creating a squeaking sound. Following this, she said, "Wow, see that? This is how my toy works!" and then demonstrated the effect again.
按照严格的教学方法进行介绍给第一组孩子。示范者说:“看着我的玩具!这是我的玩具。我将展示给你们看这玩具是怎样玩的。”然后她把一个黄色管子从紫色管子抽出,发出吱吱的叫声。接着,她说:哇,看到了吗?我的玩具就是这样玩的!”然后再展示一下它的效果。

With a second group of children, the experimenter acted differently. She interrupted herself after demonstrating the squeak by saying she had to go and write something down, thus suggesting that she might not have finished the demonstration. With a third group, she activated the squeak as if by accident. To a fourth, the toy was simply presented with the comment, "Wow, see this toy? Look at this!"
对于第二组孩子,示范者以不同的方式展示。她演示完怎样发出吱吱声后,声称要记下些东西而打断了,因此暗示她可能没有完成演示。对于第三组孩子,她展示发出吱吱声好像意外发出一样。而对于第四组,简单地用哇,看到这个玩具了么?看看它?”这样的话语来进行介绍。

After these varied introductions, the children were left with the toy and allowed to play. They might discover that, as well as the squeaker, the toy had a button inside one tube which activated a light, a keypad that played musical notes, and an inverting mirror inside one of the tubes. All the children were told to let the experimenter know when they had finished playing and were asked by the instructor if they were done if they stopped playing for more than five consecutive seconds. The entire interaction was recorded on video.
经过这些不同的介绍后,就留下玩具给孩子们让他们自己玩。他们可能会发现,除了可以发出那吱吱声外,在玩具的一个管子里还有一个电灯按钮,一个可以播放音乐的键盘和其中一条管道里面的倒像镜。所有孩子都被告知,当他们结束玩耍时要告诉实验人员,而且如果他们停止玩耍连续超过五秒钟,老师便问他们是不是不想玩了。整个互动过程都被录成了视频。

Footage of each child playing was passed to a research assistant who was ignorant of the purpose of the study. The assistant was asked to record the total playing time, the number of different actions the child performed, the time spent playing with the squeak, and the number of other functions the child discovered.
每个孩子玩耍的片段被传给一个不知道该研究目的的研究助理。助手需要记录孩子们的总玩耍时间、孩子进行不同动作的数量、花在发出吱吱声的玩法上的时间和孩子所发现的其他玩法的数量。

The upshot was that children in the first group spent less time playing (119 seconds) than those in the second (180 seconds), the third (133 seconds) or the fourth (206 seconds). Those in the first group also tried out four different actions, on average. The others tried 5.3, 5.9 and 6.2, respectively. A similar pattern (0.7, 1.3, 1.2 and 1.2) pertained to the number of functions other than the squeak that the children found.
其结果是,第一组孩子们的玩耍总时间比第二的,第三的和第四的都少。平均下来,第一组的孩子也尝试出四种不同动作。其他组的尝试出不同动作数量分别为5.3、5.9和6.2。孩子们发现不同于发出吱吱声的新花样的数量分别为0.7、1.3、1.2和1.2。

The researchers' conclusion was that, in the context of strange toys of unknown function, prior explanation does, indeed, inhibit exploration and discovery. Generalising from that would be ambitious. But it suggests that further research might be quite a good idea.
研究人员的结论是,事实上,在面对不知道其功能的新奇玩具的情况下,事先说明会抑制探索和发现能力。由此得出的归纳概况可能太大胆性急。但它表明,进一步研究也不失为一个好主意。尽管如此,进一步的研究还是十分令人期待。



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