Service as activity A cultural historical approach to service learning Christopher G pupik dean email@example.com
Why sociocultural theories? • Suggestions of the need to examine practice through sociocultural lenses: • Levine & Higgins-D’Alessandro, 2010 • McIntosh & Youniss, 2010 • Torney-Purta, Amadeo, & Andolina, 2010 • Why? • We have: examined knowledge, skills, dispositions • We need to examine the ways that knowledge, skills, dispositions are being put to use in civic engagement (practice) • Goals: • Provide some background on these theories • Illustrate how they can add to SL & CE research
Sociocultural Theories • Building off Vygotsky: • Cultural historical activity theory (CHAT or activity theory) (Cole & Engeström, 1993; Engeström, 1987) • Legitimate Peripheral Participation (Lave & Wenger, 1991)
Mediating artifacts/tools Are social Are historical Are cultural Are material/ideal Are transformed over time
CHAT Engestrom, 2001
Legitimate Peripheral Participation • Novices Masters • Butchers (Lave & Wenger, 1991) • Teachers (Tsui & Law, 2007) • Service Learning Students?
Summary: • Subjects interact with the world through the use of meditational artifacts (tools) • These tools are: • Socially, culturally, and historically developed (and continuously developing) • Within systems • Consisting of communities • With particular rules & divisions of labor • New tools can be appropriated (or old tools modified) when systems interact
So how is this helpful? • A structure for focusing on practice: • Identify and examine the transformation of tools of civic engagement (where knowledge, skills, dispositions interact) • Examine the rules and communities that structure tool use • Consider historical development of the tool • Look for: LPP, boundary crossing, and boundary objects • A change in the unit of analysis: • From individual development to development of systems • 2 layer analysis: • Individual phenomenological perspectives • Outsider 30,000 ft view
Using sociocultural theory to explain phenomena • Phenomena: • Students in a 10th grade SL class (tutoring 1st graders) exhibited a change in how they talked about the teachers they worked with: • Initial tool: critical stories of classroom practice: • yelling, disorganization • Subsequent tool: more positive orientation to classroom practice • Teachers care, have tough job, know individual student needs • But maintained an orientation that teachers are the problem in public education • Lazy • In it for the money (unions) • WHY?
Knowledge, Skills, Mindsets • Knowledge: • Teaching is hard • These teachers care • Skills: • Tutoring in a classroom • Talking about classroom practice • Mindsets: • The teachers care • Teachers are the problem
Sociocultural • Initial tool: Teachers are the key to educational success • History: developed in own experience, stories of others about public schools • Community: privileged, high value on ed, teachers held in great esteem • Rules: value teachers in our school, maintain prestige of own ed • Boundary crossing/LPP: engaged in classroom practice, not in larger issues • Closing tool: Teachers are key… this school is an exception • (does not contradict the model) • Object of discourse did not connect
References Cole, M. (1996). Cultural psychology. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press. Cole, M., & Engeström, Y. (1993). A cultural historical approach to distributed cognition. In G. Salomon (Ed.), Distributed cognitions: Psychological and educational considerations (pp. 1–46). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Engeström, Y. (1987). Learning by expanding. Helsinki: Orienta-KonsultitOy. Retrieved from http://lchc.ucsd.edu/mca/Paper/Engestrom/expanding/toc.htm Engeström, Y. (1993). Developmental studies of work as a testbench of activity theory: The case of primary care medical practice. In S. Chaiklin & J. Lave (Eds.), Understanding practice: Perspectices on activity and context (pp. 64–103). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Engeström, Y. (2001). Expansive learning at work: Toward and activity theoretical reconceptualization. Journal of Education and Work, 14(1), 133–156. Engeström, Y., & Miettinen, R. (1999). Introduction. Perspectives on Activity Theory (pp. 1–18). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Erikson, E. H. (1950). Childhood and Society. New York: Norton. Erikson, E. H. (1968). Identity, Youth, and Crisis (1st ed.). New York: Norton. Fenwick, T., Edwards, R., & Sawchuk, P. (2011). Emerging Approaches to Educational Research: Tracing the Socio-Material. London: Routledge. Retrieved from http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415570923/ Levine, P., & Higgins-D’Alessandro. (2010). Youth civic engagement: Normative issues. In L. R. Sherrod, J. Torney-Purta, & C. A. Flanagan (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Civic Engagement in Youth (E-Book.). Wiley. McIntosh, H., & Youniss, J. (2010). Toward a political theory of political socialization of youth. In L. R. Sherrod, J. Torney-Purta, & C. Flanagan (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Civic Engagement in Youth. New Jersey: Wiley. Rhoads, R. A. (1997). Community Service and Higher Learning: Explorations of the Caring Self. Albany: State University of New York Press. Torney-Purta, J., Amadeo, J.-A., & Andolina, M. (2010). A conceptual framework and multimethod approach for research on political socialization and civic engagement. Handbook of Research on Civic Engagement in Youth (E-book.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. Tsui, A. B. M., & Law, D. Y. K. (2007). Learning as Boundary-Crossing in School-University Partnership. Teaching and Teacher Education: An International Journal of Research and Studies, 23. Youniss, J., & Yates, M. (1997). Community Service and Social Responsibility in Youth. Chicago, Ill: University of Chicago Press.