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Cognitive Development. Cognition: How people think & Understand. Within this module you will begin to understand the development of logical competence.

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Presentation on theme: "Cognitive Development. Cognition: How people think & Understand. Within this module you will begin to understand the development of logical competence."— Presentation transcript:

1 Cognitive Development

2 Cognition: How people think & Understand. Within this module you will begin to understand the development of logical competence and the causes of developmental change and an account of the nature of developmental change.

3 Jean Piaget ( ) Piaget developed four stages to his theory of cognitive development: Sensori-Motor Stage Pre-Operational Stage Concrete Operational Stage Formal Operational Stage

4 Jean Piaget ( ) There are some core essences of Piagets theory that you should become familiar with. 1.There are qualitative differences between child & adult thinking. 2.It is a biological approach- Prerequisite for change. 3.Language is the outcome of cognitive ability rather than being the lead in cognitive development.

5 Jean Piaget ( ) In short Piaget believed that cognitive development was the direct result of maturation (ageing) and environment. Thus as a child becomes older through interactions with others in their environment a child's understanding becomes more complex.

6 Schemas- Mental structure that gives child model for what happens when he/she does something. Assimilation- Adding information to existing schemas, and strengthening them. E.G sucking dummy is reflex, learns to suck different shape dummy. Accommodation- Amending existing schemas to suit a new situation. Adaptation- Way baby adapts to processes of assimilation & accommodation. Equilibration- Balance of equilibrium & adaptation- the process is on going as biological changes and environment keeps going. Keywords explained:

7 Piagets stage theory explained. Sensori-Motor Stage is characterised by: The child aged between (0-2) learns to co- ordinate his/her sensory input with motor actions through a system called circular reactions...i.e. the child repeats the action in order to test their sensori motor-motor skills relationship.

8 Sensori motor cont,… Within this stage the child develops an important skill called object permenace which is defined as the ability to understand that when an object is out of sight it still exists. E.g. Hiding keys under a blanket, a small child will believe the keys no longer exist, as they get older and develop motor skills they will reach under the blanket for the keys.

9 Pre-operational stage The child’s thoughts become more symbolic and they represent their world through images and words. However they do not have the skill of ‘reversibility’ They do not understand quantity,volume and number have not changed despite a change in its appearance.

10 Pre-operational stage cont.. Piaget also thought children within this age group found it difficult to understand the perspective of another person, thus making them ‘egocentric’ aka only viewing situations from their own point of view. He illustrated this using a experiment named the 3 mountains task…

11 Three mountains task. The children were asked to choose the picture seen by the doll. The 3 & 4 yr olds 58% & 33% respectively chose their own perspective rather than the dolls. This is an example of ‘egocentric illusion’ that is their own perspective is relative.

12 Conservation of volume.. Children tend to centre/focus upon one aspect of a situation and not take into account others. Pre-operational children tended to say there was more liquid in C as they focused on height

13 Concrete Operational Stage. Children acquire internally consistent (adult) logic but only in concrete situations such as problem solving. Children in this stage are able to conserve and decentrate, they may also be able to use reversibility

14 Concrete Operational Stage cont.. Children within this stage are also able to solve ‘seriation’ problems, placing objects in order of some defining attribute i.e. length,weight or height. Jane is 96cm tall. John is 1.3m tall. How much taller is John than Jane? A: 0.34cm (highlight for answer & turn font colour to black.)

15 Thus far what do we think about Piaget? In evaluating Piaget’s work one should consider the following: 1.Methodology 2.Evidence 3.Alternative explanations 4.Practical Application

16 Lev Vygotsky ( ) Vygotsky felt the acquisition of knowledge was active and socially constructed rather than a passive conditioning. He believed that social interaction played a vital role in cognitive development firstly on a social level (between child and the world) and then on a individual level (Internally).

17 Lev Vygotsky cont.. Vygotsky believed children were born with elementary mental functions that are transformed into higher mental functions by the influence of culture. Lower functions are innate. Higher functions are voluntary, but controlled by other functions.

18 Lev Vygotsky... cont the what's,whys and wherefores of Vygotsky ! Culture teaches children both what and how to think, through the acquisition of knowledge via intellectual tools. Since much of what children learn is through interaction Vygotsky believed isolation was inappropriate...guidance by a another is usually most beneficial. Woods et al described this process as scaffolding. I.e. The support given by a significant other, e.g. teacher, parent or even peer.

19 The role of language. What does language mean to you? Technically speaking it can be phrased as a shared set of dialogues between adult and child (pre intellectual speech). Children eventually become more sophisticated and converse between themselves as they would with others, this skilled is named representation.

20 The role of language cont.. Do you speak to yourself out loud?? (Ego-centric speech) Do you use your inner monologue?? It is likely you engage more in the latter, a skill we develop form about 6/7 years old. Vygotsky identified 4 cognitive development in short….

21 The role of language cont.. Pre intellectual (social speech 0-3) Egocentric speech (3-7) Language controls behaviour. Inner Speech (7+) Language used as communicative tool, also shapes thoughts. These distinct stages in concept formation are linked with the following…

22 (ZPD) Zone of proximal development?? This is the distance between a child's current and potential abilities. The assumption behind this theory is that instruction is to stimulate those functions which lie waiting in the ZPD. “What a child can do with help today, he can do independently tomorrow”

23 Feed a man a fish feed him for a day, teach a man to fish feed him for a lifetime! Learning initially occurs between people but eventually becomes internalised.. Think how much support you needed at 6yrs old…probably not as much now!!

24 Research to support Vygotsky. Wood et al (1976) Problem solving & working with mum. Most successful strategy involved encouragement and specific instructions (Hence using Scaffolding!) Shif (1935) children aged 7-8 to complete sentences that ended in because or although- children coped better with scientific concepts rather than everyday concepts. NcNaughton & leyland (1990) ZPD- Children worked with mum on puzzles that got progressively more difficult, then on their own a week later- greatest success was when with mum (i.e. Accessing their potential, than on their own-current potential) Don’t forget the importance of interaction –(recall attachment!!) children learn from the interaction, then on their own as Vygotsky predicted.

25 Evaluation of Vygotsky. ×Little scientific evidence. ×Too much emphasis on social interaction. However! Bridges the gap between social and cognitive approaches Helps to understand how to actively help learners reach their potential…it has more educational application.

26 Piaget vs.Vygotsky. Similarities & Differences. Jean PiagetLev Vygotsky Learning is…SolitarySocial What drives development… ? Maturation, conflictEnjoyment from others, motivates more learning. Role of language…Thought drives languageLanguage drives thought Role of biology…Maturation dictates pace of cognitive development Elementary functions are innate. Child is active…Child actively organises cognitive schemas to maintain equilibrium. Child is active in providing feedback to the parent/instructor.

27 Putting it all together… Vygotsky believed in power of the community, Piaget was a product of individualist society. Piagets child: Introvert Vygotsky Child: Extrovert. But both place cognition at the centre of learning not unlike Pavlov/Freud) & both see the complex interactionist character of development-I.e. Everyone is different.

28 Applying the theories to education...Piaget. Readiness-Child needs to be ready & have reached a level of maturation before others skills can be gained. Discovery Learning-Activities planned to allow learners to experience assimilate and accommodate language thus allowing them to discover themselves. Role of teacher- To act as facilitator not instructor.

29 Applying the theories to education...Vygotsky. Learning as collaboration- Learning together rather than individuals...promotes critical thinking & interest. Zone of proximal Development (ZPD)- MKO- more knowledgeable other i.e. teacher or friend. ZPD encompasses the tasks that learners cannot perform on their own but can with help form the MKO. Scaffolding- Begin with full support, gradually remove support as abilities and confidence increase.


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