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The Theories Of Jean Piaget Essay

1108 words - 4 pages

The Theories of Jean Piaget

This essay is about Jean Piaget's theory. Piaget's theory has two main
strands: first, an account of the mechanisms by which cognitive
development takes place; and second, an account of the four main
stages of cognitive development through which children pass.

Piaget suggested that there are four main stages in the cognitive
development of children. In the first two years, children pass through
a sensory-motor stage during which they progress from cognitive
structures dominated by instinctual drives and undifferentiated
emotions to more organized systems of concrete concepts,
differentiated emotions, and their first external affective fixations.
At this stage, children's outlook is essentially self-centred as they
are unable to take into account others' points of view. The second
stage of development lasts until around seven years of age. Children
begin to use language to make sense of reality. They learn to sort
objects using different criteria and to influence numbers. Children's
increasing linguistic skills open the way for greater socialization of
action and communication with others. From the ages of seven to twelve
years, children begin the develop logic, although they can only
perform logical operations on concrete objects and events. In
adolescence, children enter the formal operational stage, which
continues throughout the rest of their lives. Children develop the
ability to perform abstract intellectual operations, and reach
affective and intellectual maturity. Most importantly, children
develop the ability to appreciate others' points of view as well as
their own.

Looking at Piaget's theory of cognitive development in more detail we
find that he based it on two biological tendencies. The two tendencies
are organization, and adaption. Organization as Piaget saw it said
that humans are designed to organize their observations and
experiences into logical sets of meanings. This organization of
observation makes the thinking process more resourceful. If a person
can put the things they observe in some sort of order the easier it is
to remember and apply their observations. If we did not organize our
observations and experiences we would have little bits of information
floating around in our brains with no connection between them.
Adaption is according to Piaget's theory is the tendency to adjust to
the environment. Adaption is a process by which we create matches
between our original observations and new ones that might not exactly
fit together. Our original observations and conceptions are called our
schemas. To adapt to new observations and experiences into our schemas
we use one of two techniques. We can take in that information by
putting it together with old schemas or conceptions. If the
observations don't fit nicely into our...

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