Arithmetic Teaching ApparatusFrom Teaching Machines to Electronic Devices
In the early 1950s, Harvard psychologist and new father B. F. Skinner turned his attention to arithmetic teaching. He argued that such instruction could be carried out by machine, and designed apparatus for that purpose. With the advent of inexpensive electronic equipment, a variety of other instruments were put to use in arithmetic instruction.
"Arithmetic Teaching Apparatus - From Teaching Machines to Electronic Devices" showing 1 items.
- In the years following World War II, American school enrollments boomed. One parent, the psychologist and Harvard University faculty member B. F. Skinner, noted that students might benefit from machines that gave extra opportunities for drill. Skinner designed this instrument to teach elementary arithmetic.
- The wooden box has a black plastic knob in front. The hinged lid extends over the middle of the top, and covers a punched paper tape. A window in this lid reveals one problem at a time. In front of the window is a set of six levers that allows one to set a number in a hole, to answer a question.
- A mark on the lid of the machine reads: TEACHING MACHINE EXHIBITED IN MARCH, 1954 (/) AT THE UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH [/] CONFERENCE ON “PSYCHOLOGY AND THE BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES”.
- Compare to other Skinner teaching machines, 1984.1069.01 and MA*335539.
- Alexander Rutherford, Beyond the Box: B. F. Skinner’s Technology of Behavior from Laboratory to Life, 1950s–1970s, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2009, esp. pp. 26-33.
- Currently not on view
- date made
- Skinner, B. F.
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- accession number
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- Data Source
- National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center