Sunday, October 31, 2010

Day 23 — A YouTube Video

The other day we were studying Piaget’s Stages of Cognitive Development in the Psychology class. Here's a video about the second stage called the preoperational stage.

This stage occurs between ages two and six. Language development is one of the hallmarks of this period. Piaget noted that children in this stage do not yet understand concrete logic, cannot mentally manipulate information, and are unable to take the point of view of other people, which he termed egocentrism.

Another well-known experiment involves demonstrating a child's understanding of conservation. In one conservation experiment, equal amounts of liquid are poured into two identical containers. The liquid in one container is then poured into a different shaped cup, such as a tall and thin cup, or a short and wide cup. Children are then asked which cup holds the most liquid. Despite seeing that the liquid amounts were equal, children almost always choose the cup that appears fuller.

Piaget conducted a number of similar experiments on conservation of number, length, mass, weight, volume, and quantity. Piaget found that few children showed any understanding of conservation prior to the age of five.

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