what is vygotsky’s theory of scaffolding learning
Vygotsky’s Cognitive Development Theory postulates that social interaction is fundamental to cognitive development. Vygotsky’s theory is comprised of concepts such as culture-specific tools, language and thought interdependence, and the Zone of Proximal Development. Furthermore, the theoretical concepts presented herein provide part of the foundation for constructivism and have contributed greatly to the restructuring of formal educational systems [ 1 , 3 ].
Vygotsky’s Cognitive Development Theory argues that cognitive abilities are socially guided and constructed. As such, culture serves as a mediator for the formation and development of specific abilities, such as learning, memory, attention, and problem solving. It is proposed that culture-specific tools play an integral role in the way children organize and think about the world. These tools may include various social artifacts.
Classroom Applications of Vygotskys Theory
Vygotskys concept of the zone of proximal development is based on the idea that development is defined both by what a child can do independently and by what the child can do when assisted by an adult or more competent peer (Daniels, 1995; Wertsch, 1991). Knowing both levels of Vygotskys zone is useful for teachers, for these levels indicate where the child is at a given moment as well as where the child is going. The zone of proximal development has several implications for teaching in the classroom.