Primary Blogging

Collecting blogs about primary education

More on developmentally appropriate practice

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By Daniel Willingham

Pop quiz: What’s the earliest age that children think abstractly?

  • 2 years
  • 4 years
  • 7 years
  • 9 years

In truth, it’s a bad question because the answer depends on the type of abstraction. If the subtext of the question is “what’s the earliest age at which children show understanding of an abstraction?” the best choice from those offered above is “2 years.” And very likely earlier. Here’s one example.

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