Journal of Educational Foundations

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Application of the principles of Vygotsky's sociocultural theory of development to preschoolers' cognitive skill acquisition

G Selzing-Musa


Sociocultural theory by Vygotsky (1896-1934) is a theory that has become popular in educational practice in recent years. It is especially important in the instruction of children in the preschool level as it is most suitable for their development and learning, which is more of social interaction. This paper discussed the application of the principles of the sociocultural theory to preschoolers' cognitive skill acquisition. Major concepts of the theory like language and thought, private speech, inter subjectivity, scaffolding, and zone of proximal development were discussed. Ways in which preschoolers can acquire cognitive skills through the application of the sociocultural theory which included assistive learning, co-operative learning, coaching, and reciprocal teaching were described. Recommendations were made among which were that learning materials like the computers, which form part of our cultural tools today, should be made available to children to serve as forms of collaborative learning.

AJOL African Journals Online