Artifacts, Visual Modeling and Constructionism: To Look More Closely, to Watch What Happens
Articles
James E. Clayson
American University of Paris
Published 2018-12-28
https://doi.org/10.15388/Problemos.2018.0.12345
PDF

Keywords

constructionism
visual modeling
transformational objects
artifacts
drawing
narrative psychology

How to Cite

Clayson, J. (2018) “Artifacts, Visual Modeling and Constructionism: To Look More Closely, to Watch What Happens”, Problemos, pp. 8-23. doi: 10.15388/Problemos.2018.0.12345.

Abstract

[full article, abstract in English; abstract in Lithuanian]

Constructionists operationalize a powerful notion they share with constructivists: individual learning is facilitated by building models of specific ideas, concepts, methods, objects, environments, feelings, dreams, memories and sounds using the learner’s current stock of knowledge. Constructionists do this by building models or artifacts that can be externally manipulated, interrogated by their builder, and verbally shared with others. Constructionists believe that new knowledge is created during these discussions. Constructionism is rich with heuristic methods for both finding and constructing artifacts and for discussing these artifacts privately and publicly. Constructionists argue that both constructing and discussing are necessary for deep sense-making.

This paper describes one specific constructionist learning method: visual modeling. It illustrates one educator’s approach, developed in the classroom over a 40-year period. It references the relevant literature; describes its pedagogic approach, materials and outcomes; and it offers a step-by-step example of one student’s thinking process. Finally, it presents – in appropriate narrative form – 15 arguments why the visual component extends the constructionist project and should be integrated into more educational programs.

PDF

References

Ackermann, E., 2001. Piaget's constructivism, Papert's constructionism: What's the difference. Future of Learning Group Publication 5(3): 438.

Albers, J., 2013. Interaction of Color: New Complete Edition. London: Yale University Press.

Arnheim, R., 1969. Visual Thinking. London: University of California Press.

Bachelard, G. and Jolas, M. (translator), 1969. The Poetics of Space. Boston: Beacon Press.

Bateson, G., 1972. Steps to an Ecology of Mind. London: University of Chicago Press.

Bollas, C., 1987. The Shadow of the Object: Psychoanalysis of the Unthought Known. London: Free Association Books.

Bollas, C., 1992. Being a Character: Psychoanalysis and Self-Experience. New York: Hill and Wang.

Clayson, J., 1985. Visual Modeling with Logo: a Structured Approach to Seeing. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Clayson, J., 2007. Radical Bricolage: Making the Liberal Arts Coherent. In I. Kalaš (ed.), Proceedings of EuroLogo 2007, Bratislava.

Clayson, J., 2008. Radical Bricolage: Building Coherence in the Liberal Arts Using Art, Modeling and Language. International Journal of Education through Art 4(2): 141-161.

https://doi.org/10.1386/eta.4.2.141_1

Clayson, J., 2013. Talking Statistics/Talking Ourselves: Some Constructionist Lessons from the Work of George Kelly. Technology, Knowledge and Learning 18: 181-199.

https://doi.org/10.1007/s10758-013-9197-x

Clayson, J., 2015. A Computational Eye: Visual Modeling with Python. Bishop, California: Deep Springs College.Drew, L., 2015. The Experience of Teaching a Creative Practice. In M. Tovey (ed.), Design Pedagogy: Developments in Art and Design Education, Oxford: Routledge, 2015, pp. 95-112.

Fava, M., Kantrowitz, A., and Brew, A., 2014. Drawing is Thinking. TRACEY: Drawing and Visualisation Research, December 2014. Available at https://www.lboro.ac.uk/microsites/sota/tracey/journal/thin/2014/FKB-editorial.html.

Goldsmith, L., Simmons, S., Winner, E., Hetland, L., Hoyle, C., and Brooks, C., 2014. Geometric Reasoning and Drawing: Possible Interconnections Among STEM Subjects and Art. TRACEY: Drawing and Visualisation Research, December 2014. Availableat https://www.lboro.ac.uk/microsites/sota/tracey/journal/thin/2014/PDF/Goldsmith_etal-TRACEYJournal-STEAM-2014.pdf.

Ionascu, A., and Rohr, D., 2016. Drawing Now. Drawing: Research, Theory, Practice 1(1): 3-16.

Kalantzis, M., and Cole, B., 2012. New Learning: Elements of a Science of Education. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139248532

Kelly, G., 1955. The Psychology of Personal Constructs. Vols. I and II. New York: Norton.

Kirsch, D., 2006. Explaining Artifact Evolution. In L. Malafournis and C. Renfrew (ed.), Cognitive Life of Things: Recasting the Boundaries of the Mind, Cambridge: McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, pp. 121-144.

Kirsch, D., 2009. Interaction, Eternal Representations and Sense Making. In N. A. Taatgen and H. van Rijn (eds.), Proceedings of the 31st Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, Austin, Texas: Cognitive Science Society, 2009, pp. 1103-1108.

Kirsch, D., 2014. Using Sketching: To Think, To Recognize, To Learn. TRACEY: Drawing and Visualisation Research, December 2014. Available at https://www.lboro.ac.uk/microsites/sota/tracey/journal/thin/2014/PDF/Kirsh-TRACEY-Journal-STEAM-2014.pdf.

Levi-Strauss, C.,1966. The Savage Mind. London: Weidenfeld and Nicholson.

Minsky, M., 1987. The Society of Mind. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Norman, E., 2015. Design Education Research: Its Context, Background and Approaches. In M. Tovey (ed.), Design Pedagogy: Developments in Art and Design Education, Oxford: Routledge, 2015, pp. 17-36.

Papert, S., 1982. Mindstorms: Children, Computers and Powerful Ideas. Jackson: Perseus Books.

https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-0348-5357-6

Papert, S., 2005. You Can't Think About Thinking Without Thinking About Thinking About Something. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education 5(3): 366-367.

Papert, S., and Harel, I., 1991. Constructionism. Norwood, NJ: Ablex Publishing.

Resnick, M., 1994. Turtles, Termites and Traffic Jams: Explorations in Massively Parallel Microworlds. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Pessoa, F., 2007. The Collected Poems of Alberto Caeiro. Translated by Chris Daniels. Exeter: Shearsman.

Roworth-Stokes, S., and Ball, T., 2015. The Use of Design Case Studies in Design Education. In M. Tovey (ed.), Design Pedagogy: Developments in Art and Design Education, Oxford: Routledge, 2015, pp. 181-214.

Schiff, B., 2012. The Function of Narrative: Toward a Narrative Psychology of Meaning. Narrative Works: Issues, Investigations, and Interventions 2(1): 33-47. Available at https://journals.lib.unb.ca/index.php/NW/article/viewFile/19497/21063.

Tovey, M. (ed.), 2015. Design Pedagogy: Developments in Art and Design Education. Oxford, Routledge.Turkle, S., 2007. Evocative Objects: Things We Think With. London: MIT Press.

Turkle, S., 2011. Falling for Science: Objects in Mind. London: MIT Press.

Turkle, S., and Papert, S., 1990. Epistemological Pluralism and the Revaluation of the Concrete. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 16(1): 128-157.

https://doi.org/10.1086/494648

Wentworth, P., Elkner, J., Downey, A., and Meyers, C., 2018. How to Think Like a Computer Scientist. E-book. Available at https://media.readthedocs.org/pdf/howtothink/latest/howtothink.pdf.

Wilde, J., and Wilde, R., 1991. Visual Literacy. New York: Watson-Guptil.

Wilensky, U., and Papert, S., 2010. Restructurations: Reformulating Knowledge Disciplines through New Representational Forms. In J. Clayson and I. Kalaš (eds.), Proceedings of the Constructionism Conference 2010, Paris. Available at http://ccl.northwestern.edu/2010/wilensky_restructurations_Constructionism%202010-latest.pdf.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Please read the Copyright Notice in Journal Policy