ABS107 - The co-construction of knowledge through a class verbal interaction

2.6 Dialogue and the co-construction of knowledge
Paper in a Working Group Roundtable (WGRT)
3:50 PM, Wednesday 30 Aug 2017 (1 hour)
Convention Center - 2000 A - Table A
This study aims to understand the co-construction of knowledge during a verbal interaction between a primary teacher and her student. Drawing on historical-cultural approach, we analyzed a two minutes dialogue. The dialogue was a sixth-grade teacher supporting her new immigrant student during a math evaluation task in a French classroom in Quebec. To deepen our analysis, we referred to Cole’s theory of mediation (1996) to clarify how the student interprets the use of tools during the interaction. In addition, we referred to Wertsch (1984) to explain the teacher’s action in the student zone of proximal development; this concept is extended by the inclusion of the three theoretical mechanisms of situation definition, intersubjectivity, and semiotic mediation. Data was collected through class observation, audio recording, and interviews with both participants. Our findings showed that during the verbal interaction, the negotiation of meaning between the student and the teacher was incoherent: the teacher didn’t have a complete consensus on the definition of the student’s difficulty. From a Vygotskian approach, the teacher and the student interpret the situation differently, so the teacher’s action in the student’s ZPD didn’t occur. This study argued that the co-construction of knowledge also refers to a social-historical context related to each of the participant’s culture.
Arab International Academy, Qatar