Lev Vygotsky was born November 5th 1896 in Russia apart of the russian middle class. Having ?nished school, he ?nished his studies at University of moscow in 1917 with a specialization in literature. Returning to Gomel to teach literature is secondary school. This sparked his excitement to understand how people learn which impacted his educational theory. Studying to the work of Maria Montessori, Sigmund Freud, and Jean Piaget. In this paper I will discuss the life and work of Lev Vygotsky (1896–1934). After a brief overview of his life, attention is paid to four of his fundamental ideas: the zone of proximal development, scaffolding, private speech; and the role culture and the environment has on learning. Although Vygotsky’s career was cut short due to tuberculosis in 1934 his legacy still inspires much of contemporary research in the humanities. (cite) Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development or ZPD is the first concept of focus and one of the most important. This is the distance between what a child can do on their own and with support. He believed that new concepts benefit from cooperation with a teacher or peer. He stated that a planned curriculum that encourages children to pair up and benefit from each other’s abilities. Vygotsky also declared that planning challenging curriculums stretch children’s competence. We need to make sure we are observing the children to create activities they want to do, things that spark their interests. They won’t want to participate and develop if they aren’t interested. An example of the ZPD would be the difference in how well a child can hammer a nail on their own and how well they can do it with and adult holding the nail steady. (cite) Scaffolding is the second concept of focus. Scaffolding is the amount given to help support one’s learning to continue independently. It is directly related to zone of proximal development in that it is the support that helps a learner successfully perform a task within his or her ZPD. Commonly, this process is done by a more competent individual supporting the learning of the less competent individual. An example would be a teacher helping a child up the stairs for the child to continue to go down the slide independently. To better our undertanding, think about how a fire is started. We start with small pieces of wood, paper, and lighting it in a few spots with a lighter or match. But once it is strong enough it will burn on its on with bigger pieces of wood and without the need of the fire we were providing. Scaffolding is applied similarly in the classroom. Like the fire teachers provide clues and learning techniques. As the child becomes capable of solving the problem without support, the teacher gradually removes these clues and moves on. (add citations) Private speech also known as inner speech is when one talk to self when play or working to problem solve. Vygotsky claimed that speech develops in an internal situation. It was Piaget who ?rst described that children who are carrying out some activity speak for themselves in a way that is often not distinct to others. At first vygotsky stated that childrens thoughts are spoken out loud, but later on the speech becomes internalized. “language is thus connected not only with thought but also with the social emotional development of the young child.” (pg323) (add citations) Vygotsky believed that personal and social experiences cannot be separated. Childrens worlds and understandings of them are shaped by their family, community, education, and culture. An example would be when children are play house. They may not be at home but they bring things from their environment into the play. They could be making super for their family and they may say “dinner is served it’s our family’s special bannock recipe”. Children are constantly learning from each other, language skills, and new understandings. Like Piaget Vygotsky believed that children learn through their play. Development and learning a controversial topic amongst Jean Piaget and Lev Vygotsky. I feel that both of them are relevant and I feel that it is very arguable. But in my opinion, it could be both. Children learn and develop differently, we all go through the same stages but at what exact time is questionable. A child could be socially insecure about something like reading. They stay very quiet and until they exceed that stage of confidence in their reading skills they may not develop because they are hiding behind the books. But for other they can be excelling in their learning which boosts confidence and help them stay on the development trains. I conclude that everyone is different and we all get through things different ways no matter how old we are.