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Piaget and Vygotsky - Child Development

            Child development occurs in discrete stages with a range of ages from birth to adulthood. Development considers many interrelated aspects of developmental change such as language and cognitive ability, motor skills and emotional development and interaction with family members and peers (Cairns, 1998). Jeane Piaget and Vygotsky's theories with emphasize child development. Piaget's theory is about the mechanisms of intellectual development and the acquisition of knowledge (Boden, 1994) whereas Vygotsky's theory is focused on how culture influences development through language and social and material structure of society (Kozulin, 1990). .
             Jean Piaget's theory is well known of the cognitive development which is also called an "ages and stages" theory because he found out the stages that the infant and child go through to develop. The first stage is sensorimotor which takes place from birth to two years when the infants are born with only some basic reflexes which means they learn to manage what they hear or see, including what their bodies are doing. The infants repeat actions which are known as the circular reactions in order to build up these sensorimotor links. At the end of first year, the child starts to use language and this is when the second stage, the pre-operational stage, begins at two to six or seven years. The child cannot cope with adult logic. They believe that objects have human feelings and are mistaken by the appearance of things for reality. The pre-occupational stage consists of egocentrism, animism and lack of conversion. Egocentrism is when the child sees the world from his or her own point of view and unaware that others can see it differently. Egocentrism can lead to animism which is when the child believes that everything and everyone feels the same way as they do. Lastly there is lack of conversion where appearance is important and not reality, for example, if there are two beakers of the same size with same amount of liquid, the child will say it is the same whereas if the same amount of liquid is poured in a tall and thin beaker then the child will say the amount of liquid is not same.

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