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ERIC Number: EJ1060670
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0009-3920
Easy as ABCABC: Abstract Language Facilitates Performance on a Concrete Patterning Task
Fyfe, Emily R.; McNeil, Nicole M.; Rittle-Johnson, Bethany
Child Development, v86 n3 p927-935 May-Jun 2015
The labels used to describe patterns and relations can influence children's relational reasoning. In this study, 62 preschoolers (M[subscript age] = 4.4 years) solved and described eight pattern abstraction problems (i.e., recreated the relation in a model pattern using novel materials). Some children were exposed to concrete labels (e.g., blue-red-blue-red) and others were exposed to abstract labels (e.g., A-B-A-B). Children exposed to abstract labels solved more problems correctly than children exposed to concrete labels. Children's correct adoption of the abstract language into their own descriptions was particularly beneficial. Thus, using concrete learning materials in combination with abstract representations can enhance their utility for children's performance. Furthermore, abstract language may play a key role in the development of relational thinking.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: DRL-0746565