Zone of proximal development? Lev Vygotsky? What's the history behind this man's work?
Vygotsky investigated child development and how this was guided by the role of culture and interpersonal communication. Vygotsky observed how higher mental functions developed historically within particular cultural groups, as well as individually through social interactions with significant people in a child's life, particularly parents, but also other adults. Through these interactions, a child came to learn the habits of mind of her/his culture, including speech patterns, written language, and other symbolic knowledge through which the child derives meaning and which affected a child's construction of her/his knowledge.