D.P. Chapter 7

  1. concepts
    -general ideas or understandings used to group together objects, events, qualities, or abstractions that are similar in some way

    -concepts help us makes sense of the world by simplifying it and allowing us to use our prior experience to interpret new situations
  2. perspectives on concepts: nativists v. empiricists
    •Nativists: argue that innate understanding of concepts plays a central role in development

    •Empiricists: argue that concepts arise from basic learning mechanisms
  3. conceptual development involves:
    • 1) dividing objects into categories:
    • -perceptual properties
    • -functions
    • -hierarchies
    • -causal connections

    2) knowledge of living thigns
  4. shape bias
    • -children are biased to give a new name to an object based on it's shape
    • -even though the size of shapes change, children still call shapes by the same name
  5. 3 Levels of Category Hierarchies:
    • 1) superordinate level: the most general level; ex. animal
    • 2) basic level: the middle level; ex. cat
    • 3) subordinate category: the most specific level; ex. panther
  6. Infants form categories of objects in:
    • the first months of life using different perceptual dimensions including:
    • -color
    • -size
    • -movement
  7. as children move beyond infancy:
    • their ability to categorize expands greatly
    • -there's an increasing understanding of category hierarchies & causal connections
  8. causal connections
    Image Upload 1
    -understanding causal relations (why objects are the way they are) helps children learn/remember new categories

    • -ex. study: gillies and wugs; 1/2 children told about gillies, half about wugs
    • -control condition: only told physical descriptions
    • -experimental condition: told about the physical characteristics + REASONS behind their appearances (eg. reasons for horns/armor)
    • -pictures were removed and they were asked to describe what each looked like: groups with the explanation (inferences, connections) were better at remembering them
  9. naïve psychology
    -a commonsense level of understanding of other people and oneself; present in children starting at the age of 3

    -2 concepts central to understanding behavior: beliefs and desires

    -even infants have a simple theory of naïve psychology, probably as a result of their intense interest in people
  10. intention
    the goal of acting in a certain way
  11. Joint attention
    in which two or more people focus deliberately on the same item
  12. Intersubjectivity
    the mutual understanding that people share during communication
  13. theory of mind
    -the basic understanding of how the mind works and how it influences behavior

    -can be tested using the 'false belief' test: crayons not in box, candles actually! What does snoopy think?

    -Wellman suggested that preschoolers' TOM includes the knowledge that beliefs often originate in perceptions

    -the ability to attribute mental states (beliefs, intents, desires, pretending, knowledge) to oneself & others & to understand that others have beliefs, desires and intentions that can be different from one's own; a well-organized understanding of how the mind works and how it influences behavior; NOT fully developed until about 4 y/o
  14. The Development of Theory of Mind Is Explained By Multiple Theories:
    • 1) Theory of Mind Module (TOMM) - Nativist
    • 2) Interactions with Other People - Empiricists
    • 3) Processing Skills - General Information
  15. False-Belief Task & Autism
    • -children with autism find false-belief tasks difficult to solve even when they are teenagers; also have difficulty:
    • 1) establishing joint attention
    • 2) developing language skills
    • 3) understanding that beliefs affect behavior

    -overall have impaired mind reading mechanisms
  16. Pretend play
    when children create new, symbolic situations
  17. sociodramatic play
    pretending certain objects represent others
  18. imaginary friends
    • -as many as 63% of interviewed children ages 3-4 and
    • again at 7-8 have imaginary companions at one or both ages (Taylor 1999)
    • -NO difference in personality or intelligence found in children w/ imaginary friends compared to those without
  19. Knowledge of Living Things
    4 & 5 y/o: children have a great knowledge of living things; are fascinated about them

    -still have limited reasoning skills
  20. Distinguishing People from Nonliving Things
    • Poulin-Dubois task: a person or a robot moved an object; both 9- and 12-month-olds show surprise when they see
    • inanimate objects move on their own
  21. Nativists and Empiricists believe that Children acquire biological knowledge differently:
    • •nativists: biology module
    • •empiricists: personal observations and other people
  22. red flags for autism:
    • 1) no babbling by 1 year
    • 2) hasn't said their first word by 16 months
    • 3) not stringing two or more words together by 2 years of age

    -children appear to be deaf; often don't respond to name under 1 year

    • -language delays; rarely respond to their name
    • -don't turn to look when you point at something (failure to achieve joint attention)
    • -social difficulties
    • -don't draw attention to themselves
    • -can have unusual behaviors/movements (spinning, toe-walking)
  23. Self-locomotion
    a sense of space independent of a child's own location
  24. dead reckoning
    the process of calculating one's current position by using a previously determined position, and advancing that position based upon known or estimated speeds over elapsed time, and course
  25. space and the external environment
    • • at 6 months, children can recognize landmarks
    • •at age 5: children can located objects w/ multiple landmarks
  26. experiencing time:
    • -occurs in early infancy
    • -estimating the duration of events occurs later
    • -at 5: children can estimate periods between 3-30 seconds
  27. different views of causality:
    • –Nativisits say there's an innate causal module or core theory
    • –Empiricists say that infants' repeated observations of the environment produce causal understanding
  28. Causal Reasoning: Infancy
    •6 month old infants can form causal connections among some physical events

    •this facilitates imitations and memory formation starting at least at one year of age
  29. Causal Reasoning Beyond Infancy
    • -expansion of children's ability to identify causal relations even when the causes are not immediately apparent
    • -older toddlers out-perform younger toddlers
    • -children actively search for hidden causes when no cause is visible
  30. magic tricks
    -most 3-4 year-olds fail to see the point of magic tricks
  31. Theories on Numbers
    • -Nativists: children are born w/ a core concept of numbers
    • -Empiricists: children learn about numbers
  32. numerical equality
    • -the realization that all sets of N objects have something in common
    • -realized as young as 5 months; young infants seem to have a sense of it
  33. by age _____, most children can count to 10
    •by age three, most children can count to 10

    •basic principles underlying counting: one-to-one correspondence, stable order, cardinality, order irrelevance, and abstraction
  34. one-to-one correspondence
    • -(bijection) is a function giving an exact pairing of the elements of two sets
    • -every element of one set is paired with exactly one element of the other set, and every element of the other set is paired with exactly one element of the first set
  35. stable order
    • -counting words must be said only once, and in a consistent order
    • -child counts, "one, two, three, four, five, six, eight, seven..." each time he counts
    • -he isn't completely correct, but he is consistent
  36. cardinality
    • -(the cardinal rule) the last counting word indicates "how many" of the collection
    • -if you ask a child who is just learning to count how many items she just counted, she may recount!
    • -with counting practice, children learn to abstract this rule, and they find that the last number word is not an attribute of the last object counted, but an attribute of the entire collection as a whole
  37. order irrelevance
    • Objects can be counted in any order
    • -a child can label objects with different numbers and the count will remain the same
  38. abstraction
    • -any kind of object can be collected and counted
    • -ex. Children can count jumps, the number of dog barks, or the missing eggs from an egg carton
  39. counting abilities are incfluenced by culture:
    -children all over the world learn number words, the rate at which they do so is affected by the system of number words in their culture

    -one reason for the faster development of Chinese children's counting ability appears to be that the Chinese words for numbers in the teens follow a consistent pattern, in contrast to the English words
  40. now from study guides
  41. category hierarchy
    • -categories that are related by set-subset relations
    • -the tool/screwdriver/flat-head screwdriver relation is an example of this
  42. perceptual categorization
    the grouping together of objects with similar appearances

    -this is a major component of infants' conceptual thinking, and often involves color or size
  43. essentialism
    the belief that living things have an essence inside them that makes them what they are

    -ex: preschoolers' belief that cows have a certain 'cowness' that they inherit from their parents (lol)
  44. sociodramatic play
    activities in which children enact minidramas with other people

    -ex: children playing 'firefighter' complete w/ imaginary hydrants, burning buildings, ladders, fire engines, and people to rescue
  45. false-belief problems
    tasks that test whether children understand that other people will act in accordance with their own beliefs, even when the child knows those beliefs to be wrong

    -children fail these tasks when they do not fully understand that people can have different views than they themselves possess
  46. subitizing
    a perceptual process by which adults and children can look at between one and three or four objects and almost immediately know how many objects are present

    -some researchers believe that young infants use this to 'solve' arithmetic problems involving one to three objects
  47. theory-of-mind module (TOMM)
    • -a hypothesized brain mechanism devoted to understanding other human beings
    • -nativist
    • -researchers who believe that children have a specialized TOMM point to brain maturation over the 1st 5 years and to autistic children's difficulties with understanding other people as evidence
  48. pretend play
    make-believe acitivities in which children act as if they are in a different situation

    -ex: a child who uses a clean paint brush on the wall in a pretense of painting the wall
  49. egocentric representation
    coding of spatial locations relative to one's own body, without regard to the surroundings

    -infants tend to use this to locate an object, even when their own position has changed
  50. object substitution
    a form of pretense in which an objects is used as something other than itself

    -when children engage in this, they must ignore many of the real characteristics of the object so that it can serve the purpose of something else
  51. a majority of children know that plants are alive at age:
    7-9 years old
  52. older infants possess the ability to:
    remember the ORDER of events
  53. 5-year-olds ___ able to use landmarks even when there are multiple landmarks not next to a hidden object
    5-year-olds ARE able to use landmarks even when there are multiple landmarks not next to a hidden objects
Card Set
D.P. Chapter 7
Conceptual Development