Jean Piaget's Theory Of Childhood Psychology

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“When you teach a child something, you forever take away his chance of discovering it for himself.” These words were articulated by one of the most influential figures in the area of childhood intelligence, specifically developmental psychology. Jean Piaget was a Swiss clinical psychologist who is well known for his work pertaining to child development. Similar to Freud and Skinner, Piaget believed in order to understand human behavior, you have to start with understanding how children function, grow and learn. Piaget spent ample years studying the behaviors and thought processes of children, analyzing the origins and development of intelligence and how it shapes our current and future behaviors. According to Piaget, intelligence is…show more content…
Instead, Piaget turned his emotional turmoil surrounding his mother’s mental illness into an interest in psychology, as young as an elementary school student. He excelled all through his school-age years, going above and beyond what was expected of him not only by his teachers but also as a young scientist. As an undergraduate student, majoring in biology, preparing for his thesis dissertation on mollusks, Piaget additionally strived to develop a biological theory of knowledge, which is known today as his theory of genetic epistemology. Through his work, he concluded that “logic is inherent in action and that the roots of logic are therefore to be found in the organization of action (Brainerd, 1996, p 191).” This discovery became the basis of one of his many hypotheses, stating that even the most complex forms of human reasoning are motor activities carried out on a symbolic plane.
Piaget’s first clinical interaction with children began after his graduation, when he took a job working at Alfred Binet and Theodore Simon’s laboratory, in a Parisian elementary school. His assigned job was translating a standardized reasoning test, created by Cyril Burt, from English to French (Brainerd, 1996). Much like his previous years in education, Piaget was not satisfied in doing only what was expected of him. Due to his own curious nature, Piaget would ask the children he was testing to explain their reasoning for choosing a particular answer.
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