Our group in Adult Learning Theory has been culling together the complexities of Constructivism, Social Constructivism and Activity Theory. It is fascinating to see Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD) and More Knowledge Others (MKO) become clear.
Here’s an example: over the weekend, my husband and I saw the play, Proof, as part of our theater subscription. The story, which began as a play by David Auburn, and later became a movie in 2005 with Gwyneth Paltrow and Anthony Hopkins, is about a brilliant mathematician whose life spiraled into madness before he died left his bereft (but also brilliant) daughter, to pick up the pieces.
The connection between the play and our topic on Constructivism and Social Constructivism is fascinating since the MKO is the student. The play is about the “fragility of intellectual brilliance.” Not to spoil the story, the More Knowledgeable Other becomes the daughter. It is a fascinating twist in Vygotsky’s ZPD where the acquisition of knowledge comes from parents, teachers and peers. Here, the daughter’s brilliance precedes her father.
See the play; it’s well done.