By Ruth M. Beard

First released in 2006. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Extra resources for An Outline of Piaget's Developmental Psychology

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Foresight is also evident in relation to sounds and actions; for example: Obs. 108. From 0;4(12) to approximately 0;4(30) Laurent cried with rage when, after his feedings, a handkerchief 21 THE SENSORI-MOTOR PERIOD or napkin was placed under his chin; they announced a few spoonfuls of a beverage he disliked. At 0;7(10) he cried in the morning as soon as he heard his mother's bed creak. Until then, although awake he did not show his hunger. ) Imitation becomes more deliberate and systematic. All three infants imitated any gesture known to them with the exception of gestures they could not see themselves make.

New 'signs' now enable the child to foresee not only an event connected with his action, but also an independent event connected with the 'activity' of an object. Jacqueline at 0;9(16) (Obs. 133. Piaget, 1953a) recognizes the difference between the sound of a glass which contains the fruit juice she likes, and that of a bowl which contains a disliked soup. When the spoon comes from a glass she opens her mouth wide, but if from the bowl her mouth remains closed. Such signs also assist in imitating actions with parts of the body which the child cannot see.

Similarly concrete operations form a basis for the system of formal operations which succeed them; to understand proportionality in adolescence, the child must first learn to compare any two quantitives or to equalize them, as he does in the period of concrete operations. It follows that the order of the periods of development is constant; one structure cannot appear before another in a certain number of children and after it with another group of children. But the age at which a stage is realized cannot be absolutely fixed, for it is always relative to the environment which may encourage, impede or even prevent its appearance.

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