Cognitive development is a specialized field of study which is part of both neuroscience and psychology. It focuses on child development as it relates to information processing, conceptual development, perception, language, and other areas of brain development and cognition. Much of this topic focuses on how a child perceives the world. We will discuss this interesting field of study and its impact on child development.
The scientist Jean Piaget was a driving force in the formation and founding of this field. He developed his theory of cognitive development. As it turns out, many of his theoretical claims have fallen out of favor with the current scientific community.
However his ideas of cognitive development as moving from actions and perception in infancy to a better understanding of reality as the child grows is largely accepted and has been adopted as the core principles in the study of cognitive development and cognition.
Many researchers speculate and theorize that children are born with cognitive systems, which can help them to tackle problems man has faced for many years. Other scientists study how they skills can be learned in such a short period of time.
Many scientists believe that there are a number of core systems of cognition which makes it much easier and more effective for children to develop different types of cognition. Some of the more commonly referenced systems include:
Numbers - It has been found that infants possess two systems for dealing with numbers. One system is optimized for small numbers and is called subitizing. And another deals with larger numbers and can approximate their measure.
Space - It has been found that very young children have an innate ability to navigate their surroundings. It has also been found that this ability to discern space is involved in the development of complex language skills which occurs between the ages of 3 and 5. Later on, adults tend to use language and symbols to reason out their information.
Visual Perception - Children can discern 3D objects from a very young age. However there are much more complex aspects of visual perception which occurs during their early development years and beyond.
Language - A very studied and important part of cognitive development involves the acquisition of language. It has been shown that learning and social experiences plays a key role in the development and acquisition of language.
Essentialism - This system has to do with the viewpoint that all entities function on their own and have individual properties.
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