Children become increasingly competent at adult-style thinking during the “tween” years. Around the age of 11 or 12, children learn to think about abstract concepts. They complete what Piaget termed the concrete operational period and enter the formal operation period. During the formal operations period, the development of logical thinking in children 6 and 7 years continues into adulthood, children develop logical thought, deductive reasoning abilities, and improved memory and executive function skills.
While not all people, and not all cultures, achieve formal operations, children become increasingly competent at adult-style thinking as they advance. Children this age are able to demonstrate abstract thinking. For example, they can understand shades of gray, wrestle with abstract concepts like love or justice, and formulate values based on thinking and analyzing as opposed to only by feeling or experiencing. They are able to classify items by many different features, such as organizing books by height while also grouping them by topic. During the early teen years, adolescent egocentrism emerges.
Egocentrism at this age is the root of self-consciousness, and it also fuels the teen’s sense of themselves as uniquely powerful and invincible. Mental development seems to drop off during the teen years, suggesting that less new skill are learned as children integrate what has already been learned. For example, further development of executive function skills mitigates risk-taking behaviors in teens, but such developments occur gradually and are not complete until children are in their mid-20’s. Memory abilities increase with the onset of formal operations, which is believed to be a result of unproved executive functions and increased experience with particular strategies. Interactive Stroop Effect Experiment, the Interactive “Directional Stroop” Effect Experiment, or the Switchball game.
What allows this selective attention to develop? Tweens and teens also display strong metacognition skills. Metacognition is the ability to think about thinking. Get kids learning with these fun, themed activities!
Nutritious breakfast and snack recipes—with food activities for kids! Reinforce your child’s time telling skills with this award-winning mobile app! Get expert advice on reading, homework help, learning activities, and more. The preschool period is a time of rapid growth along a number of developmental measures, especially children’s thinking abilities, or cognition. The preschool period is a time of rapid growth along a number of developmental measures, not the least of which is children’s thinking abilities, or cognition.
Memory is the ability to acquire, store, and recall information or experiences across time. It is not until age 3 that children can reliably do this, although they remain better at recognition than recall, and they do not show the ability to spontaneously use mnemonic strategies to assist remembering for a number of years. Want to work on phonics and memory at the same time? Children’s ability to create mental images of people or events also facilitates memory. Help your child learn to create and maintain images with these fun puzzles.
Want to develop your child’s sequencing skills? Russian researcher Lev Vygotsky believed cognition advanced through social interactions and problem solving. Vygotsky also noticed that, as children were moving towards independence with challenging tasks, they would talk to themselves. Termed private speech, this self-talk is highly prevalent in children ages 3-7.