The Developing Intellect
Can explain cognitive development from Piaget theory .
Mr. Jones “let’s suppose that you’re responsible for the admission of students to colleges. As a group, let’s decide on the issues. Than each of you, as an admission officer, will prepare an argument about the issues”.
Check that Mr. Jones analyzes the stages of students’ moral/cognitive development
How do we adjust teaching to the intellectual development of our students?.
It focuses on what kinds if thinking characterizes us as infants and on what changes occur as we mature.
It also focuses on how we can influence the development of thinking and how we can match instruction to the developmental levels of our students.
Jean Piaget (1952)
Two strategies are used to apply developmental psychology of teaching:
One strategy matches the curriculum to the students’ level of development, which necessarily involves accurately assessing the student’s state of growth.
Another calls for instruction that accelerates intellectual development, making it occur more rapidly than if teaching did not take place.
Theory of Development: Intellectual Stages
Piaget believed that human beings develop increasingly more complex levels of thinking in definite stages. Each stage is characterized by the possession of certain concepts or intellectual structure which he refers as schemas. In life, students acquire experience. They assimilate this experience to their present patterns of behavior. Their present patterns become more inadequate and develop new schemas by accommodating new information . Accommodation is changing one’s structure to fit the new experiences that occur, In human state of development, there is state of equilibrium – the experiences assimilated are compatible with the schemas in operation. After a certain period the child has assimilated new experiences that cannot be handled by the existing schema.
3 Stages of Intellectual Development
Sensorimotor stage (0-2 years)
Preoperational stage (2-7 years)
a. preconceptual thought (2-4 years)
b. intuitive thought (4-7 years)
a. Concrete operational thought (7-11 years)
b. Formal operational thought (11-16 years)
Sensorimotor thought refers to those behaviors which are preverbal and are not mediated by signs or symbols.
Case: when a toy is hidden from his view, he shows no searching movement, since he has no internal representation of the objective world when not perceiving it. Object permanence develops through repeated experiences with the world.
The sub stage of preconceptual thought marks the beginning of what Piaget calls conceptual intelligence. Adaptations are now beginning to be mediated by signs and symbols (word and images) – The symbolic function or imagery. The sub stage of intuitive thought marks between preconceptual thought and more concrete operation – relate to 3 glasses.
In concrete operational thought, Piaget (1960) defines an operation as an internalized action and the feature of reversibility. In formal operational thought, the ability to make vertical separations by solving problems at a level which transcends concrete experience.
To sum up…
Intelligence is defined as operations for transforming data from the environment – logical structures or schemas
Development is associated with passage from one stage of operation to another
Development is a function of experience and maturation
Adjusting Learning Activities to Cognitive Development
“teaching is the creation of environment”
Students will initiate learning experiences that optimally match their cognitive structure, provided the opportunity exists in the environment, because students intuitively know what activities they need, if we reach too far above the students, learning is not possible.
3 types of knowledge
learning about nature or matter
obtained through feedback from other people
concerned with mathematic and logic
Teacher’s role in physical and logical knowledge is to provide a setting in which students construct this knowledge for themselves through questioning and experimenting (boiled egg technique). Teachers can foster social knowledge by providing many opportunities for students to interact with others, Wadsworth (1978) outlines 3 roles of teachers: (1) organizer of learning, (2) assessor of children’s thinking, (3) initiator of group activities – games and discussion.