Piaget’s 4 Stages of Cognitive Development

Piaget’s 4 Stages of Cognitive Development

Dear fellow readers, this week until the next coming week, we are going to discuss the most important Pedagogical Theory which is Piaget’s Stages of Cognitive Development

Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development suggests that children move through four different stages of mental development. His theory focuses not only on understanding how children acquire knowledge, but also on understanding the nature of intelligence.

Piaget’s stages are:

  1. Sensorimotor stage: birth to 2 years
  2. Preoperational stage: ages 2 to 7
  3. Concrete operational stage: ages 7 to 11
  4. Formal operational stage: ages 12 and up

Piaget believed that children take an active role in the learning process, acting much like little scientists as they perform experiments, make observations, and learn about the world. As kids interact with the world around them, they continually add new knowledge, build upon existing knowledge, and adapt previously held ideas to accommodate new information.

For today’s topic, we are going to tackle the first stage of Piaget’s Cognitive Development:

The Sensorimotor Stage

Ages: Birth to 2 Years

Major Characteristics and Developmental Changes:

  • The infant knows the world through their movements and sensations.
  • Children learn about the world through basic actions such as sucking, grasping, looking, and listening.
  • Infants learn that things continue to exist even though they cannot be seen (object permanence).
  • They are separate beings from the people and objects around them.
  • They realize that their actions can cause things to happen in the world around them.

During this earliest stage of cognitive development, infants and toddlers acquire knowledge through sensory experiences and manipulating objects. A child’s entire experience at the earliest period of this stage occurs through basic reflexes, senses, and motor responses.

It is during the sensorimotor stage that children go through a period of dramatic growth and learning. As kids interact with their environment, they are continually making new discoveries about how the world works.

The cognitive development that occurs during this period takes place over a relatively short period of time and involves a great deal of growth. Children not only learn how to perform physical actions such as crawling and walking, they also learn a great deal about language from the people with whom they they interact. Piaget also broke this stage down into a number of different substages. It is during the final part of the sensorimotor stage that early representational thought emerges.

Piaget believed that developing object permanence or object constancy, the understanding that objects continue to exist even when they cannot be seen, was an important element at this point of development. By learning that objects are separate and distinct entities and that they have an existence of their own outside of individual perception, children are then able to begin to attach names and words to objects.

 

Stay up to date on our website for the next stage of Piaget’s Cognitive Development

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