Jean Piaget (1896-1980) studied the correlation between children's cognitive development and age. According to Paget, children undergo four stages of cognitive development, proceeding sequentially through each stage although at individual rates. Children add new experiences to their knowledge and gradually gain the capacity to achieve higher order thinking. The table below summarizes the characteristics of each stage of cognitive development.
|Concrete operational||7-11 years||
|Formal operational||11-15 years||
Source: Adapted from B. Wadsworth, Piaget's Theory of Cognitive and Affective Development: Foundations of Constructivism, 5/e © 1996. Published by Allyn and Bacon, Boston, MA. Copyright © 2004 by Pearson Education. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.
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