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His View of How Children's Minds Work and Develop Has

His View of How Children's Minds Work and Develop Has

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Published by: arnaiz17 on Oct 05, 2009
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08/08/2010

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His view of how children's minds work and develop has been enormously influential, particularly in educational theory. His particular insight was the role of maturation(simply growing up) in children's increasing capacity to understand their world: theycannot undertake certain tasks until they are psychologically mature enough to do so. Hisresearch has spawned a great deal more, much of which has undermined the detail of hisown, but like many other original investigators, his importance comes from his overallvision.He proposed that children's thinking does not develop entirely smoothly: instead, thereare certain points at which it "takes off" and moves into completely new areas andcapabilities. He saw these transitions as taking place at about 18 months, 7 years and 11or 12 years. This has been taken to mean that before these ages children are not capable(no matter how bright) of understanding things in certain ways, and has been used as the basis for scheduling the school curriculum. Whether or not
 should 
be the case is adifferent matter.
iaget's Key Ideas
Adaptation
What it says: adapting to the world throughassimilation andaccommodation 
The process by which a person takes material into their mind from theenvironment, which may mean changing the evidence of their sensesto make it fit.
The difference made to one's mind or concepts by the process of assimilation. Note that assimilation and accommodation go together: you can't haveone without the other.
Classification
The ability to group objects together on the basis of commonfeatures.
Class Inclusion
The understanding, more advanced than simple classification, thatsome classes or sets of objects are also sub-sets of a larger class. (E.g.there is a class of objects called dogs. There is also a class calledanimals. But all dogs are also animals, so the class of animalsincludes that of dogs)
Conservation
The realisation that objects or sets of objects stay the same even whenthey are changed about or made to look different.
Decentration
The ability to move away from one system of classification to another one as appropriate.
Egocentrism
The belief that you are the centre of the universe and everythingrevolves around you: the corresponding inability to see the world assomeone else does and adapt to it. Not moral "selfishness", just an
 
early stage of psychological development.
Operation
The process of working something out in your head. Young children(in the sensorimotor and pre-operational stages) have to act, and trythings out in the real world, to work things out (like count on fingers):older children and adults can do more in their heads.
Schema (orscheme)
The representation in the mind of a set of perceptions, ideas, and/or actions, which go together.
Stage
A period in a child's development in which he or she is capable of understanding some things but not others
Stages of Cognitive Development
Stage Characterised bySensori-motor
(Birth-2 yrs)Differentiates self from objectsRecognises self as agent of action and begins to act intentionally: e.g. pulls astring to set mobile in motion or shakes a rattle to make a noiseAchieves object permanence: realises that things continue to exist even whenno longer present to the sense (pace Bishop Berkeley)
Pre-operational
 (2-7 years)Learns to use language and to represent objects by images and wordsThinking is still egocentric: has difficulty taking the viewpoint of othersClassifies objects by a single feature: e.g. groups together all the red blocksregardless of shape or all the square blocks regardless of colour 
Concrete operational
 (7-11 years)Can think logically about objects and eventsAchieves conservation of number (age 6), mass (age 7), and weight (age 9)Classifies objects according to several features and can order them in seriesalong a single dimension such as size.
Formal operational
 (11 years and up)Can think logically about abstract propositions and test hypothesessystemticallyBecomes concerned with the hypothetical, the future, and ideological problems
 
1. Infancy: Birth to 18 MonthsEgo Development Outcome: Trust vs. MistrustBasic strength: Drive and Hope
Erikson also referred to infancy as the Oral Sensory Stage (as anyone might who watchesa baby put everything in her mouth) where the major emphasis is on the mother's positiveand loving care for the child, with a big emphasis on visual contact and touch. If we passsuccessfully through this period of life, we will learn to
trust
that life is basically okayand have basic confidence in the future. If we fail to experience trust and are constantlyfrustrated because our needs are not met, we may end up with a deep-seated feeling of worthlessness and a
mistrust
of the world in general.Incidentally, many studies of suicides and suicide attempts point to the importance of theearly years in developing the basic belief that the world is trustworthy and that everyindividual has a right to be here. Not surprisingly, the most significant relationship is with the maternal parent, or whoever is our most significant and constant caregiver.
2. Early Childhood: 18 Months to 3 YearsEgo Development Outcome: Autonomy vs. ShameBasic Strengths: Self-control, Courage, and Will
During this stage we learn to master skills for ourselves. Not only do we learn to walk,talk and feed ourselves, we are learning finer motor development as well as the muchappreciated toilet training. Here we have the opportunity to build self-esteem and
autonomy
as we gain more control over our bodies and acquire new skills, learning rightfrom wrong. And one of our skills during the "Terrible Two's" is our ability to use the powerful word "NO!" It may be pain for parents, but it develops important skills of thewill.It is also during this stage, however, that we can be very vulnerable. If we're shamed inthe process of toilet training or in learning other important skills, we may feel great
shame and doubt
of our capabilities and suffer low self-esteem as a result.The most significant relationships are with parents.
3. Play Age: 3 to 5 YearsEgo Development Outcome: Initiative vs. Guilt

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