Piaget's Stages Of Development Case Study

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Register to read the introduction… The four stages are: sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete operational, and formal operational. Piaget noted that all people pass through these same four stages in exactly the same order and that individuals may go through long periods of transitions between stages (Beins 2012). A person may show characteristics of one stage in one situation, but characteristics of higher or lower stage in other situations. Therefore these stages are only general guidelines, not labels for all children of a certain age. Knowing a child’s age is never a guarantee that you know how the child will think. With that said, the first stage as the sensorimotor period begins at birth and usually last until about two years of age (Beins 2012). The sensorimotor period consists of six sub-stages: modification of reflexes, primary circular reactions, secondary circular reactions, coordination of secondary circulatory reactions, tertiary circular reactions, and the beginning of representational thought (Beins 2012). The modification of reflexes, birth to approximately 1 month, involves the change of reflexes to make them more adaptive. Not only can the infant demonstrate sucking and rooting capabilities, he or she can show a difference in amount of sucking on new stimuli. For example: the infant sucks differently on his or her mother’s breast versus a dry finger. The infant begins to develop more elaborate reflexes by sucking on objects when placed in the mouth, closing fingers with objects, and turning one’s head towards a noise. The infant is innately curious and initiate’s activity (Miller 2011). As the child reaches around 1-month, he or she approaches what Piaget refers to as primary circular reactions, which lasts until about 4 months. Infants within the primary circular reactions sub-stage show more flexible reflexes than earlier reflexes. They also …show more content…
Formal operations include mental tasks involving abstract thinking and coordination of a number of variables. At this time, the child’s focus of thinking can shift from what is to what might be. He or she shows an ability to think abstractly, systematics, and scientifically. They use hypothetico-deductive reasoning. Hypothetico-deductive reasoning is a formal operations problem-solving strategy in which an individual begins by identifying all the factors that might affect a problem and then deduces and systemically evaluates specific solutions. Another formal operation developed at this time is propositional thought (Sugarman 1987). The child is able to think about all possible outcomes, interpret particular outcomes, and interpret particular events in terms of their relation to hypothetical events. They show an ability to understand abstract concepts such as conservation of motion and chemical interactions (Miller 2011). The child also shows the use of inductive reasoning, or using specific observations to identify general principles (Sugarman 1987). For example, the meteorologist observes changes in the weather and attempts to identify general principles about weather patterns. Formal-operation thinkers can form hypotheses, set up experiments to test them, and isolate or control variables in order to complete a valid test of the

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