The main contradiction of age (development problem)
The social situation of the joint activity of the child and the adult contains a contradiction. In this situation, the way of action with the object, the sample of the action belongs to the adult, and the child at the same time must perform the action on his own. This contradiction is solved in a new type of activity, which is born at the end of infancy, and in the early age becomes the leading.
Lead activity type
This is objective activity, aimed at assimilation of socially worked out ways of acting with objects. First of all, it is objective, because the motive of activity lies in the object itself, in the way it is used. Communication at this age becomes a form of organization of objective activity. It ceases to be an activity in the proper sense of the word, since the motive moves from the adult to the public object. Communication appears here as a means of carrying out objective activity, as an instrument for mastering the public ways of using objects. Despite the fact that communication at an early age ceases to be a leading activity, it continues to develop extremely intensively and becomes speech. Communication, related to objective actions, can not be only emotional. It must become an indirect word that has objective reference.
How did you imagine the process of development of objective action before? Before V. Koehler, this process was observed and determined what exactly the child can do in 1 year 3 months, then, in 1 year 6 months, fixed the motor activity and various abilities of the child; placed them in a row, but could not penetrate into the essence of the psychological mechanisms that lie behind the subject activity of the child. After Koehler, an experiment entered this area. K. Buhler and other psychologists (O. Lipmapn, H. Bogen) invented situations simulating those experiments that Koehler did on animals. It was found that in these situations a small child behaves like a monkey, hence the whole age was called chimpanzee. Like the monkey, the kid opens the gun-shaped way of using the object.
It is interesting that the researchers attributed to a child of an early age a lot of discoveries and inventions. Thus, V. Stern believed that the child opens in the year and a half the symbolic function of speech, and K. Buhler attributed to the child of two years the discovery of the inflectional nature of the language. Weight these descriptions of discoveries are explained by the fact that psychologists, because of the level of their methodological premises, could not notice that something stands and mediates something between the child and the subject. Strange as it may seem, they did not see the joint activity of the child and the adult in relation to the subjects.
How does this joint activity develop, leading to its destruction in the future? Analyzing this process, D.B. Elkonin proceeded from the following four basic postulates.
1. The child himself, himself, is never able to discover the social essence, social function, social mode of use of objects.
2. Things are not written for what it serves. Its physical properties do not orient the objective action that must be performed with it.
3. The fundamental difference between the tool activity lies in the fact that the action with the tool must be subordinated to objective logic, "hidden" in the gun. Otherwise, the social function, which is incorporated in it, can not be realized with it.
4. In the cannon, in the removed form, there is a goal for the sake of which it must be used. Ideas about the goal, the end result at first do not exist as data and orientation actions of the child. They arise only as a result of the implementation of the most objective action. Only after the child has drunk water from the cup, he has a goal: to drink water from the cup. Only after the child learns to use the tool, he has goals that begin to orient the child's actions with objects. Thus, the goal must be isolated as a result of the action in a particular situation.
In order to understand how the formation of an objective action takes place, it is necessary to present its structure (Fig. 15). The human action consists of an orienting and an executive part. It is always monitored and evaluated. He has a purpose. The action is always performed for the sake of another person, the atom is its meaning.
In the joint subject action of the child and the adult, everything is initially merged. The very method of orienting an action, like a goal, is also not given in the form of an abstract sample, but exists within the action of the child with the adult. Gradual dismemberment of the action and the transition of its various components to the side of the child occurs in the course of development. On the basis of objective action, all mental processes are formed, so understanding an objective action means understanding development.
In what way are they dismembered and the various components of objective action pass to the side of the child? Below is a diagram of the development of objective action at an early age, in which you can find the answer to this question.
D.B. El'konin considered the development of objective action at an early age in two main directions. This, first, the development of the action from the joint with the adult to self-fulfillment and, secondly, the development of means and ways to orient the child himself in the context of the implementation of objective action.
The first line of development of objective actions is the transition from compatibility to independence. At the initial stages of development of objective action, the development of social functions of the object and those goals that can be achieved with a certain socially established method of using the object is possible only during the joint activity. As it was shown IA. Sokoliansky and A.I. Meshcheryakov, an adult takes the hands of a deaf-blind child and makes them an action (brings a spoon to the child's mouth). Both the orientation, and the execution, and the evaluation of the action are on the side of the adult. Then, partially-shared, or jointly-divided action occurs. The adult only begins the action, and the child bites it. As soon as a joint divided action appears, it can be said that the goal of the objective action has come to light: the child knows what will happen as a result of the action. Next, it is possible to perform the action based on the impression. This is a step of utmost importance. The adult tore off the tentative part of the action from the executive and wants the child to do it too. Such a separation, as D.B. Elkonin, produces an adult, so this process is not spontaneous, not spontaneous. Next follows the verbal indication, and the child performs all the action on his own. This is the first line of development of objective action - the line of movement from compatibility to independence. For this line of development, the adult first appears for the child as the bearer of samples of human actions, he is no longer "closed" for the child the subject, as it was at the beginning of the age.
The second line of development of objective actions is the line of development of orientation in the system of properties of the object and actions with it in the child itself. By the end of the first year of life, the child develops functional actions when he uses tools, focusing on the physical properties of the object, therefore, at this age there is a non-specific use of the object. Then there are attempts to use objects in a specific way in the absence of a formed method of its application. For example, a child understands the use of a spoon, but when he eats, he takes it closer to the working end, and the whole contents of the spoon pour out. Finally, the child takes possession of the human way of using the tool.
We will focus on this, a fundamentally significant stage in the development of the human psyche. According to E .V. Ilyenkov, an outstanding domestic philosopher, here "comes no more no less than the act of the birth of the human psyche, the mysterious act of the birth of the soul, by the expression of Marx, the inorganic body of man. " According to the philosopher, the elementary, basic form of the human psyche is "the work of the hand according to the scheme - along a path determined not by a biologically built-in need, but form and the arrangement of things, created by human labor, created by man for man ... & quot ;. At the stage of mastering the child by human means, actions with human objects "do not develop" in the sense of complicating or improving the animal way of satisfying organic need, and replacing with this method by reverse, the displacement of the mode of vital activity by a specifically human " (Ilyenkov EV, 2002).
However, the process of development of objective action does not end there.
The child begins to use the action in a new, non-utilitarian situation. You can observe two types of transfer:
1) transfer of action from one subject to another, functionally identical. For example, a child has learned to drink from a cup, and then drinks from a glass, mugs, etc. On the basis of such a transfer, the action is generalized, its function is singled out;
2) transfer of the action according to the situation. Having learned to use boots, the child pulls them on the ball, the leg of the chair, and so on. (examples FI Fradkina). Here the child acts with the same subject, but in different situations. On the basis of such a transfer, the child's action is schematized, in it is allocated what is preserved by repeated repetition in different situations. Due to these two transfers, it is possible to detach the action from the object, detach the action from the situation and, moreover, detach the action from the child himself.
Separation of action from the object, from the situation, from the child itself leads to a schematization of the action, its generalization. The child has a image of his own action.
D.B. El'konin rightly pointed out that in the mastery of objective actions, along with the instruments, a significant function is played by toys. Toy - is a subject that models an object of the adult world. In relation to toys, there is no rigid logic of their use, and the adult does not impose a way of acting with the child on them. Toys are multifunctional, you can do anything with them. Because of these properties of the toy, the orienting side of the action is separated from the executive. Thanks to the action with the toy, the orientation turns on the situation. As a result, further schematization of the action takes place.
The child begins to compare his actions with the actions of an adult, he begins to recognize in his actions the actions of an adult and first begins to call himself the name of an adult: "Peter the Pope". Thus, the transfer of action facilitates the separation of the child from the adult, comparing himself with him, identifying himself with the adult. The social situation, therefore, begins to change, now it can be represented as follows: "the child is an object - the ADULT". This is possible only as a result of micro-changes in the objective action.
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