Differenttheorists had varying ideas on cognitive development. Such theoristsmay include Piaget and Vygotsky. The purpose of this report is todiscuss, as well as compare and contrast, Piaget’s and Vygotsky’sassumptions.
Thereare six basic assumptions associated with the Piaget’s theory ofcognitive development. One of the assumptions is that kids are activeand driven learners. Piaget made the assumption that children shouldbe considered naturally curious, and learn actively about theirenvironment. They are perceived as natural learners. Anotherassumption by Piaget is that children develop knowledge from theirexperiences (Meadows82).Piaget postulated that kids ask questions and store them for lateruse, and utilize them in constructing their own perceptions of theworld around them. A third assumption of Piaget is that the processesof accommodation and assimilation are used by children duringlearning and are complimentary to one another. Besides, according toPiaget, for cognitive development to occur, there is the need to havean interaction with the physical and social settings. Furthermore,Piaget made the assumption that children have the capacity ofcomfortably explaining new happenings in terms of the schemes thatexist.
Oneof the assumptions of Vygotsky is that complex mental processes tendto set as social activities. Vygotsky believed that a developing kidlearns through interacting with adults socially. When children areinitially learning, they discuss information and objects with adultsor other individuals who are knowledgeable (Siegel and Morrison 72).This implies that there would be less development in case there is nosocial interaction. Peers are also indicated to play a critical rolein influencing the development of a child. Another assumption made byVygotsky is that thought and language develop independently of eachother initially but the two become interdependent when kids arearound two years old. According to Vygotsky, this is the case becausechildren can think and express feelings, but they are not in aposition to talk since the skill is not yet developed (Bjorklund 54).In addition, another Vygotsky’s assumption is that kids are capableof performing more challenging tasks, when they are helped by morecompetent and advanced people.
Comparisonof Vygotsky’s and Piaget’s Assumptions
Inboth assumptions, children are used as the subjects that supporttheir theories. Indeed, in all their assumptions, Vygotsky and Piagethave used children in making their postulations. In both cases,social interaction has been indicated as an important aspect in theprocess of cognitive development. On the other hand, the two have adifference in that Piaget assumes that children tend to constructknowledge from their surroundings while Vygotsky assumes that kidsobtain knowledge through engaging with adults or people who areknowledgeable (Siegal and Luca 84).
Anexample to illustrate how cognitive development affects learning andcapacity in the early childhood classroom is where a child knows howto grasp a play item without being taught how to hold it, but throughseeing others holding the play item.
Vygotskyexample can be depicted in the early child classroom throughanalyzing the manner in which a kid knows how to pronounce a certainword by learning it from the actions of a mother, peers, or a teacherin pronouncing it. In this case, the social interactions play asignificant role in exposing the child to the learning process.
Bjorklund,F. David. Children`sStrategies: Contemporary Views of .New York: Psychology Press, 2013. Print.
Meadows,Sara. TheChild as Thinker: The Development and Acquisition of Cognition inChildhood.New York: Routledge, 2012. Print.
Siegal,Michael, and Luca Surian. Accessto Language and .Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012. Print.
Siegel,L. S., & Morrison, F. J. (2013). CognitiveDevelopment in Atypical Children: Progress in Research.New York, NY: Springer New York.