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DP_lecture_infoprocessing-1 - Sociocultural Perspective of...

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Sociocultural Perspective of Cognitive Development
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Sociocultural Approaches Focus on the contribution of other people and the surrounding culture to children’s development o Emphasize guided participation , a process in which more knowledgeable individuals organize activities in ways that allow less knowledgeable people to engage in them at a higher level than they could manage on their own o Present interactions as occurring in a broader sociocultural context that includes cultural tools , the innumerable products of human ingenuity that enhance thinking
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Lev Vygotsky (1896 - 1934)  Parent of the sociocultural approach to child development o His theory presents children as social beings, intertwined with other people who are eager to help them gain skills and understanding It sees development as continuous, with change as quantitative rather than qualitative Humans are seen as unique because of their inclination to teach each other and to learn from each other
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The Theory Like Piaget, was interested in how children acquire knowledge o Perspective that states that children acquire their culture’s values, beliefs, and problem-solving strategies through collaborative dialogues with more knowledgeable members of society
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Developmental Processes Sociocultural theorists believe that many of the processes that produce development, such as guided participation, are the same in all societies However, the content that children learn varies greatly from culture to culture and these differences shape children’s thinking accordingly
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Young infants have basic functions attention, sensation, perception, & memory
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So, how do children become more complex? o Need culture to transform them into higher mental functions
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Culture transforms these processes via tools of intellectual adaptation = allow one to use basic mental processes more efficiently o I.e., teaches children how to think
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Memory Example Young infants have a basic memory system o And because... We exist in a literate society We will most likely have contact with people who teach us how to write o To enhance our memory, we might write things down o Another culture might tie a string in a knot
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How culture affects  cognition Math English: “teens” are not linguistically represented on a base-10 system 11-12, 13, & 15 must be memorized digit part is represented first four teen, rather than ten-four Chinese: System is base-10
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Could this affect development  of math skills?
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