A calling ...

"We are called to be architects of the future, not its victims."

"Make the world work for 100% of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological offense or the disadvantage of anyone."

- Buckminster Fuller

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Piaget's Pre-operational Thought and Compatibility with Social Learning Theory

Piaget’s Preoperational Thought, and Compatibility with Social Learning Theory: Learning to Read at 3


            My mom taught me how to read when I was 3 years old. According to Piaget, logical thinking would have been very difficult, if not virtually impossible for me, at that time. Since I had been read to daily from birth, I had an ear for the language. My mom challenged me to learn how to sound out words. I still remember learning to read as being painful. As the youngest child, I was an eager learner, and always wanted to be able to do everything my older siblings could do. Plus, my love of stories motivated me. Thus, I quickly became a fluent reader, who read mostly on an emotional level of rhythm and tone.

            Reading was magical as a child, as I loved folk tales, mythology, and hearing the rhythms and tone of children’s stories such as Wait Til The Moon is Full, by Garth Williams, or Where the Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak.

Language Mediation

Because my mom valued reading so highly, her book choices were always beautifully written and illustrated. When my mom taught me how to sound out words, and used Dr. Seuss to model word patterns, she was using language to mediate the process of teaching me how to read. At 3 my egocentrism precluded what reading specialists today would consider genuine comprehension, but I was able to respond on a level of feeling, and a level of appearance, i.e., how it sounded.


            As an apprentice reader, my mom frequently took me to the library, which was another thing that fostered a lifelong love of reading. I would not have known what books were suitable for me. She helped me traverse my Zone of Proximal Development, and the feelings of accomplishment have lasted a lifetime. While my understanding was surface level as a 3 year old, I sounded great!