Piaget and Vygotsky
Piaget: Cognitive Psychologist
Development Precedes
Three principles of Development
1. It occurs at different rates.
2. It occurs in an orderly fashion.
3. It occurs gradually.
How We Learn
Schemes: We put things into patterns to learn.
Adaptation: We try to fit new information into
existing schemes.
(Disequilibrium or
Cognitive Dissonance)
Accommodation: We have to change our
Constructivist Thinking
Need disequilibrium to grow!
Therefore, we need to give students
curriculum that is developmentally
appropriate (DAP).
It means teaching through activities that lead
to discovery.
• Children must create and construct their
own understanding. Therefore, it is
important to teach children knowledge and
skills when the children are
developmentally ready and willing and able.
Four Stages of Intellect
Sensorimoter: 0-2 years
Nothing exists unless visible. By age 2, object
permanence. Able to use symbols to
replace visuals.
Preoperational: 2-7 years
• Primitive thinking and egocentric. Not able
to think in reverse.
Concrete Operational: 7-11 years. Think
logically if concrete situation. Can think in
reverse. Less egocentric. Understand
Formal Operational Stage: 11adulthood.
Think abstractly. Can shift what might be
(hypothetical). Capable of inductive
reasoning. Able to use observations to
identify general principles.
Adolescent egocentrism. Focused on own
ideas and beliefs. Elkind’s imaginary
Activity: Part 1
• Select an event in which you experienced a
“disequilibrating event.” Describe the
• How did you respond to the event?
Characterize your response in terms of
Piaget’s ideas about accommodation and
Activity: Part 2
• Describe alternative ways in which you
could have responded, Characterize those
alternatives in terms of Piaget’s theory.
• How would working with peers assist a
student to experience disequilibrium and requilibrium?
Learning Precedes
We learn continuously, sometimes
simultaneously and almost always through
social interaction.
Important Words of Vygotsky
• Private Speech: our way of making shared
language personal.
• Zone of Proximal Development: capable of
learning with help (Bruner).
• Self-Regulation: ability to think and solve
problems with the help of others.
• Scaffolding: giving support so that students
can succeed in their zone of proximal
How to Provide Scaffolding:
Cooperative learning
Peer tutoring
Sociocultural Interaction
Assessing beyond recall and comprehension
• Form a content-area group and try the
activity on page 59 of your textbook:
• “Reflecting on the Chapter”
– Junior High and High School
• First Activity

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