Chapter 2

                                                Cognitive Development and

I. Piaget's Theory of Cognitive Development

    A. Piaget's basic assumption: Development as "making sense of the world"

    B. Influences on development: Maturation, activity, social transmission

    C. Basic tendencies in thinking

1. Organization: Tendency to organize thinking processes into psychological

2. Adaptation: Tendency to adapt to the environment through complementary
    processes of assimilation and accommodation

3. Equilibration: A balance among organization, assimilation, and accommodation

4. Disequilibration: failure of a scheme to produce satisfying a result, so search
    continues through assimilation and accommodation

D. Four stages of cognitive development: stage theory broadly defines the unvarying sequence of
      steps in the development of thinking abilities

    1. Infancy: The sensorimotor stage (approximate ages 0 - 2)

...................a) Development based upon information obtained through the senses
.......................or body movements

                    b) Development of understanding of object permanence

                    c) Development of goal-directed actions and reversible actions

    2. Early childhood to the early elementary years: The preoperational stage ( approximate ages 2 - 7 ) ;

                    a) Beginning of logical mental actions (operation)

    3. Difficulty with two principles: Decentering and conservation

    4. Egocentrism: tendency to see world from own view

    5. Collective monologue characterizes children's speech (no real interaction takes

    6. Guidelines: Teaching the Preoperational Child

E. Later elementary to middle school years: The concrete operational stage (approximate ages 7- 11)

    1. "Hands-on thinking" stage: Recognizes stability of physical world, realizes
    elements can be changed and retain original characteristics (identity), and is capable
    of reversible thinking

    2. Operations mastered at this stage: Conservation, Classification, and Seriation 

    3. Guidelines: Teaching the Concrete Operational Child

F. Junior and Senior high: Formal operations (approximate ages 11 - 15)

    1. "Scientific" reasoning stage; Hypothetico-deductive and inductive reasoning

    2. This stage not necessary for survival; achieved in areas of interest and experience

    3. Do we all reach the fourth stage?

    4. Guidelines: Helping Students to Use Formal Operations

II.Vygotsky's Sociocultural Perspective

A. Cognitive development depends on interaction with:

    1. the people in the child's world

    2. the tools that the culture provides to support thinking

B. The role of language and private speech

    1. Allows younger children to guide behavior and thinking

    2. Transitions to inner speech — helps solve problems

    3. Comparison of Vygotsky and Piaget’s views of private speech

    4. Self-talk and learning: Teaches students to use cognitive

C. The Role of Adults and Peers

    1. Serve as guides to support cognitive growth, the process of providing
    guidance is often referred to a scaffolding

    2. Assisted learning: Provided categories and concepts for thinking

    3. Most guidance is communicated through language

III. Implications of Vygotsky's Theory for Teaching

A. Assisted Learning

    1. requires scaffolding, giving information, prompts, reminders,

    2. Examples: Meichenbaum’s cognitive self-instruction, cognitive
        apprenticeship, reciprocal teaching

B. The zone of proximal development

    1. Area where child cannot solve problem alone, but can with

    2. Optimal for teaching and learning

    3. Dynamic assessment of assessment of learning potential

IV. Stages in the Process of Language Acquisition

A. First words

    1. Holophrases: Single words to express complex ideas

    2. Overextension: Use of one word to cover a range of concepts

    3. Underextension: Use of word too specifically

B. First sentences

    1. Telegraphic speech: Nonessentials omitted, as in a telegram

    2. Sentences are short, but semantics are complex

C. Learning grammar

    1. Overregularization uses rules too extensively

    2. The order of words in a sentence is simplistically understood

D. Learning Vocabulary

    1. Between ages 2 and 4, vocabulary doubles every six months

    2. By age 5 — 6: child masters basics of language; still egocentric with