"The nativist and cognitive developmentalist perspectives emphasize the contributions of "naturem" whereas the behaviorist and interactionist perspectives focus more on the contributions of "nurture" (Otto, 2010, 27).
"The interactionist perspective focuses on the primary role of sociocultural interaction in children's development of language knowledge" (Bruner, 1983, 1990; John-Steiner, Panofsky, & Smith, 1994; Schieffelin & Ochs, 1986; cited by Otto, 2010, p. 33).
Vygotsky is a theorist associated with this perspective.
"The difference between what a child can accomplish alone and what she can accomplish with an adult's (or more capable peer's) mediation or assistance is termed the zone of proximal development (Vygotsky, 1978; cited by Otto, 2010, p. 35).
"The behaviorist perspective emphasizes the role of "nurture" and considers learning to occur based on the stimuli, responses, and reinforcements that occur in the environment: (Otto, 2010, p. 31).
"Reinforcement of a child's verbal and nonverbal responses to language directed at him is responsible for the language learning that occurs. Thus, language is "taught" through situations in which children are encouraged to imitate others' speech and to develo associations between verbal stimuli (i.e., words) and objects" (Harris, 1992; cited by Otto, 2010, p. 31).
"The nativist perspective emphasizes inborn or innate human capabilities" (Otto, 2010, p. 27).
Noam Chomsky is a major theorist of this perspective
"Children learn language by discovering the structure of their language" (Cairns, 1996; cited by Otto, 2010, p. 29).
We develop language naturally.
"The cognitive developmental perspective is based in the work of Jean Piaget (1955)" (Otto, 2010, p. 30).
"The emphasis of this perspective is that language is acquired as maturation occurs and cognitive competencies develop" (Otto, 2010, p. 30).
It is believed that children learn through object permanence. That is they become aware that just because something is out of sight, it does not mean that it is out of mind (i.e. a blanket covers a book; the book is still there, it just has a blanket over it.)
"For "language" to exist, Piaget contended, the "capacity for mental representation must be present" (Brainerd, 1978, p. 110). Thus, vocalizations and babbling that occur during infancy are not language, according to Piaget" (Otto, 2010, p. 30).