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ERIC Number: EJ1090613
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1524-8372
The Shape of Things: The Origin of Young Children's Knowledge of the Names and Properties of Geometric Forms
Verdine, Brian N.; Lucca, Kelsey R.; Golinkoff, Roberta M.; Hirsh-Pasek, Kathryn; Newcombe, Nora S.
Journal of Cognition and Development, v17 n1 p142-161 2016
How do toddlers learn the names of geometric forms? Previous work suggests that preschoolers have fragmentary knowledge and that defining properties are not understood until well into elementary school. The current study investigated when children first begin to understand shape names and how they apply those labels to unusual instances. We tested 25- and 30-month-old children's (N = 30 each) understanding of names for "canonical" shapes (commonly encountered instances, e.g., equilateral triangles), "noncanonical" shapes (more irregular instances, e.g., scalene triangles), and "embedded" shapes (shapes within a larger picture, e.g., triangular slices of pizza). At 25 months, children knew very few names, including those for canonical shapes. By 30 months, however, children had acquired more shape names and were beginning to apply them to some of the less typical instances of the shapes. Possible mechanisms driving this initial development of shape knowledge and implications of that development for school readiness are explored.
Psychology Press. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (DHHS); National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: 1RC1HD063497001; SBE1041707