Saturday, February 24, 2018

Sequencing Printables

       In cognitive psychology, sequence learning is inherent to human ability because it is an integrated part of conscious and nonconscious learning as well as activities. Sequences of information or sequences of actions are used in various everyday tasks: "from sequencing sounds in speech, to sequencing movements in typing or playing instruments, to sequencing actions in driving an automobile." Sequence learning can be used to study skill acquisition and in studies of various groups ranging from neuropsychological patients to infants. According to Ritter and Nerb, “The order in which material is presented can strongly influence what is learned, how fast performance increases, and sometimes even whether the material is learned at all.” Sequence learning, more known and understood as a form of explicit learning, is now also being studied as a form of implicit learning as well as other forms of learning. Sequence learning can also be referred to as sequential behavior, behavior sequencing, and serial order in behavior.
       In the first half of the 20th century, Margaret Floy Washburn, John B. Watson, and other behaviorists believed behavioral sequencing to be governed by the reflex chain, which states that stimulation caused by an initial movement triggers an additional movement, which triggers another additional movement, and so on. In 1951, Karl Lashley, a neurophysiologist at Harvard University, published “The Problem of Serial Order in Behavior,” addressing the current beliefs about sequence learning and introducing his hypothesis. He criticized the previous view on the basis of six lines of evidence:
"The first line is that movements can occur even when sensory feedback is interrupted. The second is that some movement sequences occur too quickly for elements of the sequences to be triggered by feedback from the preceding elements. Next is that the errors in behavior suggest internal plans for what will be done later. Also, the time to initiate a movement sequence can increase with the length or complexity of the sequence. The next line is the properties of movements occurring early in a sequence can anticipate later features. Then lastly the neural activity can indicate preparation of upcoming behavior events, including upcoming behavior events in the relatively long-term future."
       Lashley argued that sequence learning, or behavioral sequencing or serial order in behavior, is not attributable to sensory feedback. Rather, he proposed that there are plans for behavior since the nervous system prepares for some behaviors but not others. He said that there was a hierarchical organization of plans. He came up with several lines of evidence. The first of these is that the context changes functional interpretations of the same behaviors, such as the way “wright, right, right, rite, and write” are interpreted based on the context of the sentence. “Right” can be interpreted as a direction or as something good depending on the context. A second line of evidence says that errors are involved in human behavior as hierarchical organization. In addition, “hierarchical organization of plans comes from the timing of behavioral sequences.” The larger the phrase, the longer the response time, which factors into “decoding” or “unpacking” hierarchical plans. Additional evidence is how easy or hard it is to learn a sequence. The mind can create a “memory for what is about to happen” as well as a “memory for what has happened.” The final evidence for the hierarchical organization of plans is characterized by "chunking". This skill combines multiple units into larger units.

       I have included these explanations above in order to further describe the importance of teaching sequence to young learners through the use of sentence and story printables. Many of these are available on the web for free. Teachers and home schooling parents alike may introduce many educational concepts to their students ages 4 through 8 by the manufacture and study of simple materials like these. Encourage your little ones to color their own mini-books and to also print their name on the inside cover of their minibook.
  1. Mother Goose Auto Parade - mini book

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