Middle Childhood Cognitive Analysis

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The period of middle childhood develops many new cognitive abilities. This period, also referred to as the period of concrete operations, is where children begin to develop an understanding of conservation. The child also starts to understand and empathise with people’s behaviours and emotions so they develop the ability to logically analyse situations. At a younger age, children were unable to perform mental reversal but it is said in middle childhood that this skill develops. Many of these abilities will have been introduced earlier in the child’s life yet they were unable to explain them therefore being unable to comprehend them. We gather the above cognitive developments during the period of middle childhood by mainly focusing on the works…show more content…
As I discussed above, Piaget believed that all children sought out information and they would naturally develop these abilities but Vygotsky presents a more logical theory. As children, our interaction with our surroundings and the people around us shapes how we develop. “According to Vygotsky, language is the basis for cognitive development, including the ability to remember, solve problems, make decisions and formulate plans” (Martin et al., 2010). When young children below the age of seven would say words to themselves, Piaget saw this as an egocentric and non-social act whereas Vygotsky saw this is an early learning and memorisation process. Once the child reached a certain age (middle childhood), they would stop talking to themselves thus developing what he called an “inner speech”. This would “represent the internalisation of words and the mental manipulation of them as symbols for objects in the environment.” (Martin et al., 2010). Whilst the child is developing their own vocabulary, there interaction with their surroundings and culture will help them to learn even more thus developing their cognitive skills during middle childhood. Being around and conversing with people assists children in understanding and empathising with others behaviours and emotions. Rogoff’s study (as cited in Martin, Carlson & Buskist, 2010) has shown that children become better problem solvers when…show more content…
The years leading up to the concrete operational stage brought about some aspects of these abilities yet it is only during middle childhood that the child begins to understand and interpret them. The ability to conserve, one which is vital and most prominent in children of this age develops as well as the improved ability of flexible problem solving. The skill of interpreting others behaviours, interrelating the things around with your increasing knowledge and the understanding of reversibility are all cognitive abilities which are gradually mastered over the period of middle childhood. This stage of childhood evidently brings about a big change to the child’s process of thinking. They have now developed a more analytical and abstract mind set which will soon develop even further as they mature into the next stage of
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