Cognitive Development

1580 Words May 14th, 2002 7 Pages
Cognitive Development According to Piaget

Cognitive development is defined as gradual orderly changes by which mental processes become more complex and sophisticated, or the scientific study of how human beings develop in certain orderly stages as they get older. The actual study of cognition refers to the process of knowing; it is the study of all mental activities related to acquiring, storing, and using knowledge (Microsoft, 2001, p.3). How we as humans develop cognitively has been thoroughly observed and researched by Jean Piaget. He was a cognitivist: he believed that our environment stimulates us to learn on our own (make our own intelligence).
Piaget was a Swiss psychologist who had a major impact on educational theory in the
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The final sub-stage is from eighteen to twenty-four months and is called mental combinations. This is when they start to pretend. They now have symbolic play where they imitate mom, dad, brother or sister, babysitter, etc. They can now remember the past and certain isolated events.
Piaget 's second stage of cognitive development is the Preoperational Stage and is from age two to six or seven years (Woolfolk, 2001). This is the stage where children really start to use symbolic representation. There are only two sub-stages here, but they last for longer amounts of times with more learning occurring in each. The first sub-stage is from two to three or four years and is called the preconceptual phase. At this stage children start to judge from their own experiences. However, the world still revolves around them; if they want it, it will happen (or so they think). They also think that others have access to their thoughts. Therefore, when children of this age start to talk about random ideas or people they know, they don 't give specifics because they think others know exactly what or who they are talking about. In this stage, children are very egocentric. More than forty percent of the time, they talk about themselves. Their

imagination in this stage is very active. They talk to inanimate objects (their toys, a rock, a stick, etc.). This is when they start to mix play with reality. They are afraid of monsters and fictional bad guys from their favorite cartoon
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