Singapore University of Social Sciences

Children as Thinkers and Meaning Makers

Children as Thinkers and Meaning Makers (ECE102)


ECE102 Children as Thinkers and Meaning Makers examines how young children think and learnas they make sense of the world around them. It builds upon the introduction to key learning theories from ECE 100, zeroing in on the process of knowledge construction by children. The importance of fostering the development of executive function and the dispositions that enable children to be engaged learners will be considered; including dispositions such as curiosity, persistence, flexibility, reflectiveness, and a collaborative outlook to problem-solving.

Level: 1
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY JAN


  • Historical overview of ECE
  • Three main theories of development
  • Theories underlying the notion of the construction of knowledge
  • The process of adaptation – Piaget
  • Zone of Proximal Development – Vygotsky
  • Theory of Multiple Intelligences – Gardner
  • Curriculum Integration
  • Types of play
  • Interpretations of play
  • Critical thinking dispositions for learning
  • What is a teacher?
  • Intentionality in teaching

Learning Outcome

  • Identify the key assumptions underlying the three main theories of development
  • Discuss the importance of critical thinking as a foundation for development
  • Explain the relationship between the five key dispositions and learning
  • Describe the theories underlying the notion of constructivism
  • Analyse the implications of intentionality in teaching
  • Propose play-based strategies for promoting critical thinking skills in young children
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