ERIC Number: ED231523
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Jun
Reference Count: 0
The Relationship of Counting and Transitivity to the Measurement of Length.
The purpose of this paper is to describe the development of children's measurement concepts and to outline implications of recent research on transitivity and counting. Discussion is confined to measurement of length and focuses on aspects of measurement outlined in the last two of Piaget's three measurement stages. It is argued that measurement involves interdependent application and knowledge processes (application processes include counting and division into units; knowledge about measurement involves understanding of transitivity and measurement units). Research described indicates (l) that young children apply the counting estimator in a measurement context with no regard for unit size and (2) that it is presently not known how the child switches in a measurement context from using the counting estimator to using the measurement estimator. At least three developmental sequences are proposed to account for this change; all assume that the child has attained the ability to conserve length. The first sequence suggests that motivation to change is based on cognitive conflict between the length estimator and the counting estimator. The second and third sequences suggest that motivation to change is based on knowledge about, respectively, the transitivity principle and direct instruction. Suggestions are offered for further research. (RH)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Length; Transitivity
Note: Paper presented to the Jean Piaget Society (Philadelphia, PA, June 1983).