ERIC Number: EJ1052359
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Mental Rotation with Tangible Three-Dimensional Objects: A New Measure Sensitive to Developmental Differences in 4- to 8-year-old Children
Hawes, Zachary; LeFevre, Jo-Anne; Xu, Chang; Bruce, Catherine D.
Mind, Brain, and Education, v9 n1 p10-18 Mar 2015
There is an emerging consensus that spatial thinking is fundamental to later success in math and science. The goals of this study were to design and evaluate a novel test of three-dimensional (3D) mental rotation for 4- to 8-year-old children (N?=?165) that uses tangible 3D objects. Results revealed that the measure was both valid and reliable and indicated steady growth in 3D mental rotation between the ages of 4 and 8. Performance on the measure was highly related to success on a measure of two-dimensional (2D) mental rotation, even after controlling for executive functioning. Although children as young as 5?years old performed above chance, 3D mental rotation appears to be a difficult skill for most children under the age of 7, as indicated by frequent guessing and difficulty with mirror objects. The test is a useful new tool for studying the development of 3D mental rotation in young children.
Descriptors: Spatial Ability, Thinking Skills, Cognitive Processes, Children, Visualization, Geometric Concepts, Executive Function, Age Differences, Child Development, Skill Development, Developmental Stages, Test Construction, Test Validity, Test Reliability
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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