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Piaget and his theory - Essay Example

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In understanding the patterns of cognitive development in infants and children, and how families and teachers affect their development, the contributions of Jean Piaget (1896-1980) hold a very significant importance. Piaget’s main focus has been on the cognitive organization…
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Piaget and his theory
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Download file to see previous pages Five year old Mike learns about animals when his grandmother tells him stories of how his grandfather spent a day in the jungle. This emotional attachment with the caregiver plays a great role in the changes in cognition right from infancy.
Assimilation. Six month old Michelle has built the schema of grabbing an object and thrusting it into the mouth. She grabs her favorite toy and puts it into her mouth. Having that schema built, she grabs her mom’s spectacles and thrusts them into her mouth. One year old Bob has built the schema of animals as a four legged moving object. Whenever he sees a dog, he knows that it is an animal. This is called assimilation that changes the cognition by applying one schema to different objects.
Accommodation. When Michelle grabs a big rubber ball, she will use her old schema of grab-and-thrust, but this time she will not be successful. So, she will adapt her old schema to, may be squeeze-and-dribble, in order to deal with the new object. Also, when Bob sees a car, he tries to fit it into his old schema of animals, but he adapts his schema to four wheeled vehicle when he sees that car is not like a dog. This adjustment of old schemas to suit new objects is called accommodation.
Equilibration is the concept which Piaget defined as balance between assimilation and accommodation (Berk & Roberts, 2009). Michelle learnt how to balance between assimilation and accommodation by applying earlier knowledge of grab-and-thrust and altering behavior to adjust new knowledge of squeeze-and-dribble.
Children combine existing schemas into fresh, complex informational structures. For example, two year old Bobby has built the scheme of flying objects as objects that fly high up in the sky. He, then, assigns the subordinate classes of birds and airplanes to the super-ordinate class of flying objects. This helps him understand information faster. Three year old has the scheme of buildings as ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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