ERIC Number: ED248013
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Jan-10
Reference Count: 0
Preschool Children's Problem-Solving Interactions at Computers and Jigsaw Puzzles.
Muller, Alexandra A.; Perlmutter, Marion
In two studies, preschool children's social interactions while working on problem-solving tasks were investigated. In the first study, 27 preschool children were observed over a period of 9 weeks while working on learning games at a computer. Sharing, verbal and nonverbal instruction, and initiation of interaction were recorded. A total of 63 percent of the time at the computer was spent with a peer, and peers often spontaneously shared and instructed each other. Age-related increases in time spent at the computer, as well as in self-initiation of interaction and sharing, were evident. No differences were found in boys' and girls' activities at the computer. In the second study, 18 children were observed over a period of 5 weeks while working with jigsaw puzzles. In this context, children worked with peers just 7 percent of the time and exhibited far fewer instances of cooperative interaction. Generally, results indicated that preschool children can engage in cooperative problem solving and instruction and that various activities differentially stimulate such behavior. Further, in contrast to stereotypes about computers, this research suggested that even children younger than school age can work effectively at computers and that computer technology may actually stimulate social interaction in problem solving. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Sharing Behavior; Social Interaction
Note: Document contains faint, broken print.