ERIC Number: EJ850001
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 20
Young Children's Spontaneous Use of Geometry in Maps
Shusterman, Anna; Lee, Sang Ah; Spelke, Elizabeth S.
Developmental Science, v11 n2 pF1-F7 Mar 2008
Two experiments tested whether 4-year-old children extract and use geometric information in simple maps without task instruction or feedback. Children saw maps depicting an arrangement of three containers and were asked to place an object into a container designated on the map. In Experiment 1, one of the three locations on the map and the array was distinct and therefore served as a landmark; in Experiment 2, only angle, distance and sense information specified the target container. Children in both experiments used information for distance and angle, but not sense, showing signature error patterns found in adults. Children thus show early, spontaneously developing abilities to detect geometric correspondences between three-dimensional layouts and two-dimensional maps, and they use these correspondences to guide navigation. These findings begin to chart the nature and limits of the use of core geometry in a uniquely human, symbolic task.
Descriptors: Maps, Error Patterns, Geometric Concepts, Young Children, Child Development, Developmental Stages, Cognitive Development, Navigation, Geometry
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
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