2 “Piaget’s theory described stages that children pass thought in the Background“Piaget’s theory described stages thatchildren pass thought in thedevelopment of intelligence andformal thought processes.”Born August 9, 1896Died September 16, 1980At a young age he became interested in researchEarned his Ph. D in Zoology from the University of NeuchatelDeveloped his theories by studying the intellectual development of his own three children“Provided support for the idea that children think differently than adults.”References:fmajorthinkers/p/piaget.htm
3 The Four stages of Cognitive Development Name of Piaget’s TheoryThe Four stages of Cognitive Development
5 Four Factors that Influence Changes in Thinking Biological Maturation: The unfolding of the biological changes that are genetically programmed.Activity: Acting on the environment and learning from it.Social Experiences: Learning from others.Equilibration: Search for mental balance between cognitive schemes and information from the environment.References: Woolfolk, 2010, p. 32
6 Two Basic Tendencies in Thinking OrganizationAdaptationThe combining, arranging, recombining, and rearranging of behaviors and thoughts into coherent systems.(Woolfolk, 2010, p. 32)Piaget says humans are born with a tendency to organize thinking processes into psychological structures (these structures are for understanding and interacting with the world). (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 32)These structures are schemes.Piaget defines schemes as, organized patterns of thought and behavior used in particular situations (Papalia, 2009, p. 147)Adjustment to the environment. (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 33)Humans adapt by assimilation and accommodation in order to achieve equilibration.Assimilation: Fitting new information into existing schemesAccommodation: Altering existing schemes or creating new ones in response to new information.Equilibration: Search for mental balance between cognitive schemes and information from the environment.(Woolfolk, 2010, p. 33)Assimilation example: children seeing a raccoon for the first time and calling it a “kitty”, They matched the new experience with an existing scheme for identifying the animalAccommodation example: Adding the scheme for recognizing the raccoons to the system for identifying animals
7 Importance of Equilibration Piaget’s theory is based around this principle“…the actual changes in thinking take place through the process of equilibration.” (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 33)Process:We relate a certain scheme to an event and it works, than it is in equilibration. If not, then disequilibrium occurs and this causes humans to search “for a solution assimilation and accommodation” therefore thinking changes. (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 33)
9 Sensorimotor Stage Infancy (age 0-2) Infants learn, “about themselves and their world through their developing sensory and motor activity” (Papalia, 2009, p. 146)Schemes remain tied to physical actionsThinking at this stage involves: seeing, hearing, moving, touching, and askingAccomplishments:Ability to mentally represent objects and actions in memoryStart to recognize that objects still exist even if they are removed from sightThey move from reflex actions to goal-directed activity
10 Preoperational Stage Ages 2-7 Tend to be egocentric Egocentric: Assuming that others experience the world the same way they do (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 35)Expansion of symbolic thoughtSymbolic Thought: Ability to use mental representations (words, numbers, or images) to which a child has attached meaning (Papalia, 2009, p. 229)Good at one way logic but have difficulty thinking backwardsCan do simple categorizationDifficulty with conservation and decenteringConservation: Some characteristics of an object remain the same despite changes in appearance (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 35)Decentering: Focusing on more than one aspect at a time (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 35)
11 Concrete-Operational Stage Ages 7-11Use reasoning to solve actual problemsUnderstanding of conservation, knowledge that things can change or be transformed and still conserve its original characteristicsThinking is limited to real situations (the here and now), they cannot reason hypothetically or solve abstract problemsEducation/Learning Affects:Master classificationCategorizes wellNumber and mathematics sense growUnderstanding of maps, models, distance, and time growUse only inductive reasoningInductive reasoning: Type of logical reasoning that moves from particular observations about members of a class to a general conclusion about that class.Example: “my cat meows, Mrs. Salvo’s cat meows, Staci’s cat meows, so all cats meow.”
12 Formal Operations Ages 11 to Adulthood Biggest part of this stage: Ability to think ABSTRACTLY!Thinking shifts from what is, to what might beEmotional Affects:Adolescent Egocentrism- they know that others have different opinions and beliefs but are focused on their own ideas (Woolfolk, 2010, p. 39)The possible and ideal start captivating the mind and feelings (Papalia, 2009, p. 372)Education/Learning Affects:Use symbols to represent other symbols (x stands for an unknown number), which is used in Algebra and CalculusBetter understand metaphor and allegory in Language ArtsCapable of hypothetical-deductive reasoning and inductive reasoningHypothetical-deductive reasoning: a strategy in which an individual begins by identifying all the factors that might affect a problem and then deduces and systematically evaluates specific solutions (what our text book says). In other words they can develop a hypothesis and design an experiment to test what causes it.
14 Cognitive Development in the Classroom “There are at least two aspects of Piaget’s work that we believe are important parts of any course dealing with children’s learning and development: the logical problem developed by Piaget to demonstrate children’s thinking processes and the clinical method used to administer these problems.” (Ormrod, 1985, p. 216)Educator’s can perform the clinical methods on students through already set-up logical problems to figure out what stage of development the child is at.Different Experiments used: reverse seriation, conservation of substance, conservation of area, conservation of displaced volume, combinatorial logic, separation and control of variables, and proportional reasoning. (Ormrod, 1985, p. 216)
15 Teaching Children at Different Levels PreoperationalConcrete-OperationalUse props and visual aidsMake instructions as short as possibleHelp students gain the ability to see things from another's point of viewUnderstand that students might have different meanings for the same wordHands-on practice is a mustProvide a wide range of experiences to help build children’s schemasUse props and visual aidsAllow children to manipulate and test materialInstruction time needs to still remain brief and organizedWhen explaining complex ideas use familiar examplesAllow time for classification and groupingGive children logical problems to think about and solveReferences: Woolfolk, 2010, p.36-38
16 Formal OperationsFostering Formal-operational Thinking“…only 30% to 40% of high school students can do Piaget’s formal- operational tasks” (as cited in Woolfolk, 2010, p.39)It is questioned whether all adults ever get to this stage and at what age this occursAllow students to experimentAllow them to think hypotheticallyTeach broad concepts, not just specific facts and relate the material to their own life’sReferences: Woolfolk, 2010, p. 40
17 Bottom Line with Cognitive Development and Teaching Piaget’s theory gives educators one way of figuring out how students think differentlyA teacher needs to understand that they could and probably will have all types of learners, who are in different stages, trying to learn in their classroomMaterials need to be set up to benefit concrete thinkers but also formal thinkersInstruction, tasks, and presentations need to be set up to satisfy all the levels of learners and thinkersThe Cognitive Development logical problems and clinical methods can be used by teachers as they planThe specific teaching advice discussed previously can help teachers set up their instruction based on what age group they are teaching in order to provide the best education
18 Teacher’s need to remember that there is no one size fits all education for all age groups! Younger children learn and think differently then older children!
19 ReferencesCherry, K. (n.d.). About.com: Psychology. Jean Piaget biography. Retrieved March 14, 2012, fromod/profilesofmajorthinkers/p/piaget.htmOrmrod, J.E., & Carter, K.R. (1985). Systematizing the piagetian clinical interview for classroom use [Electronic Version]. Teaching of Psychology, Vol. 12, No. 4,Papalia, D.E., Olds, S.W., & Feldman, R.D. (2009). Human development (11th ed.) New York: McGraw-Hill Companies.Woolfolk, A. (2010). Educational psychology (11th ed.) New Jersey: Merrill, Pearson.
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