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Tribute to Mentors

Venger Leonid Abramovich
Zaporozhets Alexander Vladimirovich
Poddjakov Nikolay Nikolaevich

Zaporozhets Alexander Vladimirovich

A.V. Zaporozhets was a director of the Institute of preschool education of APS USSR which since 1960 in and outside of USSR was considered to be the center of scientific research of childhood.

Connoisseur of art and a true scientist, Alexander Vladimirovich was a highly cultured and an educated person. His favorite subject was human emotions. He knew people well and personal traits of his Institute co-workers were of exceptional importance to him.

A.V. Zaporozhets was a student and a follower of L.S. Vygotsky. He worked on children’s psychology and psychology of sensory processes. In particular, he was an originator of an idea of viewing perception as an action, e.g. by the means of psychological tools. He introduced “sensory standard” term into the science of psychology, with which he evolved L.S. Vygotskiy’s theory that considered symbols as the only psychological tools.

During the World War 2, A.V. Zaporozhets was engaged in rehabilitation of movements of wounded soldiers in which he based himself on activity theory (rehabilitation through engaging a patient in his or her usual activities, which activated both central and peripheral ends of analyzer resulting in recovery of nerve fibers). 

A.V. Zaporozhets was fond of children and eagerly devoted his life to child psychology. In his works he opposed arising tendency of unnatural “boosting” mental development – premature subjecting a child to complex forms of educational activities. A.V. Zaporozhets was the first to introduce the term “enrichment of child development” into child psychology as a concept of child development through the optimum use of specifically childish kinds of activities as a special strategy of organizing preschool education. Therefore he was critical of nationwide lowering the school age of children to 6 years, as he believed that prolongation of childhood years was the greatest achievement of human civilization.