If there’s one thing I love about my job as a teacher of young children, it is the opportunity to witness firsthand the remarkable developmental processes that transform in each child as he matures. For instance, this week while creating craft project with my school agers, one of my imaginative students offered to make me a ring out of pipe cleaners. When she handed me her masterpiece, I was really astounded. Undeniably, it’s very creative!
In theory, it is said that children between 5 and 7 years of age gradually begin to make transition from unsystematic illogical way of thinking to the more logical thought process. Accordingly, Jean Piaget, a developmental psychologist, named three types of knowledge: physical, logical-mathematical, and social knowledge. From the three types of knowledge, evidently the birth of my artistic pipe cleaner ring is the result of the second type of knowledge, wherein my student used her cognitive ability to perform reversible, logical, and mathematical transformations on concrete objects. For example, bending and twisting pipecleaners to form different shapes. It is said that many experiences such as this, in which young children manipulate various objects and use them in different ways, increases their conceptual development and build understanding. This is one reason why as a teacher I am always keen on child initiated activity, wherein children are given an important time to simply explore and express themselves.
The Young Child, Development From Prebirth Through Age Eight, Margaret B. Pucket, et al