In this clip of the Big Bang Theory it shows an example of behaviourism. 

What aspects of the clip show parts of Piaget's theory? 

How would you modify Sheldon's teaching strategy to make it more Piagetian? 


11/23/2012 2:04pm

Perhaps to be more Piaget, Sheldon could have started a discussion on the appropriateness of conversational tangents and of using a cell phone while in the company of others. Then, Penny could have time to reflect on it, whether she thought it was socially positive or not for them.

But if those were truffles, would physical postitive reinforcement have been such a bad thing? ha, ha.

11/24/2012 8:03pm

Hi Irene, thanks for ice-breaking the DIY task. I agree with you strategy, that Sheldon shoulduse more previous discussion and further reflection to convey his instruction. Piaget suggested that student learn from their own assimilation and accommondation, therefore Penny should behave better if she understood why her behaviors are not praised. But things are not absolute, if for clever student like Penny, she might think the truffle is enough to make the learning happen. :-)

11/24/2012 8:50pm

I'd like to reply as a visitor too, because I think this task posted by Richard is really hilarious. ------

I think Sheldon did act as a Piagetian when he "applied the instruction at the right time to be useful, i.e. pushing not pulling".

He could be more Piagetian if he played like Penny's peers instead of her instructor. Maybe he could complain for her conversational tangents and cell phone usage, and when Penny asked him why (that is student-initiative discovery) he could spread his opinions. And if Penny didn't agree with him (that is Piaget's disequilibrium caused by peer interaction), they can have a discussion.

I find Piagetian instruction could be more gentle and more learner-friendly than the behaviorism, which we would all hope to be treated by our teachers. But in this clip, of course, gentleness could not create so many humor as it is now. Truffle is not always a bad thing, I agree.

11/25/2012 2:59pm

Great ideas Irene and Ping.

I would have liked Sheldon to involve Leonard to make the learning more based on social interaction, a discussion between the three of them on appropriate cellphone use.

Sheldon also could have been constantly on his phone trying to annoy Penny creating a "direct experience".

Thanks for the posts Irene and Ping!

11/25/2012 9:34pm

True Richard... But Leonard would never have agreed to it, and in fact was upset when he realized what Sheldon was doing :-)


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