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The Development of Children’s Thinking

The Development of Children’s Thinking
Its Social and Communicative Foundations

December 2017 | 416 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

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The Development of Children’s Thinking
offers undergraduate and graduate students in psychology and other disciplines an introduction to several core areas of developmental psychology. It examines recent empirical research within the context of longstanding theoretical debates. In particular, it shows how a grasp of classic theories within developmental psychology is vital for a grasp of new areas of research such as cognitive neuroscience that have impacted on our understanding of how children develop.

The focus of this book will be on infancy and childhood, and it looks at:

  • Theories and context of development
  • How developmental psychology attempts to reconcile influences of nature and nurture
  • Communication in infancy as a precursor to later thinking
  • Language development in primates and young children
  • Cognitive and social development, including the child’s understanding of the mind
  • How studies of moral reasoning reflect upon our understanding of development 
Chapter 1: Introduction: What is Human Thinking and How Does it Develop?
Chapter 2: The Role of Biology in Psychological Development
Chapter 3: Constructivist Approaches to Children's Thinking
Chapter 4: Sociocultural Approaches to Children's Thinking
Chapter 5: The Development of Communication and Social Understanding in Infancy
Chapter 6: Theories of Communication and Social Understanding in Infancy
Chapter 7: Animal Communication and Human Language
Chapter 8: Language in Human Communication and Thinking
Chapter 9: How Children Learn the Meaning of Words
Chapter 10: How Children Come to Control Their Behaviour
Chapter 11: Understanding the Social World
Chapter 12: Social Interaction, Language and Social Understanding
Chapter 13: Moral Reasoning and Action
Chapter 14: Recent Issues in Moral Development

It is refreshing to find an accessible, engaging text that addresses the interplay between socio-emotional processes and the development of children’s thinking – this, together with the inclusion of contemporary literature, examples and video clips, make the book a ‘must read’ for students of Developmental Psychology. 

Dr Sarah Davis, Senior Lecturer Psychology
Institute of Health & Society, University of Worcester

This engaging textbook uses great [real-life] examples and observations of infants and children to illustrate various approaches to conceptualizing early social, communicative, and moral development. The text encourages readers to think critically about presuppositions originating in various theories and world views regarding the nature of the human mind and how infants learn to make sense of their environment.

Moreover, introducing each topic with a number of thought provoking questions, such as “What is morality?” and “How do children come to understand it?”  will encourage readers to think critically about aspects of human development we all tend to take for granted. Drawing on the works of Piaget and Vygotsky, among others, readers will be encouraged to take an action-based approach to infant development which considers how infants learn through acting on their environment as well as through others responding to them.

Viktoria Kettner
Simon Fraser University

This book locates the development of children's thinking in a psycho-social context, describing in succinct detail the major theories of which students should be aware. Sufficient detail It is included and the material is well set out, with helpful text boxes that highlight key learning points. Video examples of teaching points are signposted. This will serve the needs of a range of students who are studying child and adolescent psychotherapy.

Dr mary Glover
Department of Psychology and Counselling, Newman University
March 23, 2018

Easy to read text that evaluated theories for children’s development clearly for students to develop their analysis of key points to explore in more detail; gaining a better understanding of theoretical perspectives.

Miss Tracey Canham
Health Care and Early Years, Swindon College
February 15, 2018

A useful resource for my students.

Dr Gill Waters
Department of Psychology, Bradford University
January 22, 2018

Comprehensive and accessible guide

Sarah Holmes
Childhood & Youth Studies, Liverpool Hope University
December 12, 2017

A detailed and critical analysis of both traditional and contemporary theories of cognitive development

Mrs Suzi Smale
Psychology, Petroc College
December 4, 2017

Innovastive and easy to digest. Great book

Mrs Abigail Gosling
Department of Education Studies, Bedfordshire University
February 10, 2017

Jeremy Carpendale

Jeremy CarpendaleJeremy I. M. Carpendale is Professor of Developmental Psychology at Simon Fraser University, Canada. He has published in the areas of cognitive, social cognitive, and moral development. His work focuses on the nature and development of thinking about social and moral matters and the role of language and social interaction in such development. He is author of How Children Develop Social Understanding (2006 with C. Lewis). He is an editor of several books, including Social Life and Social Knowledge: Toward a Process Account of Development (2008 with U. Müller, N. Budwig, & B. Sokol), The Cambridge Companion to Piaget ... More About Author

Charlie Lewis

Charlie Lewis is Professor of Family and Developmental Psychology at Lancaster University, United Kingdom. His research focuses on both preschoolers’ social cognitive skills and the influence of family factors on that the nature and development of these skills. He has written or edited sixteen books and several research papers not only on cognitive, social cognitive, and social development in typical children, but also in atypical populations, particularly children with autism. His current research includes studies on the development of executive function skills in preschoolers and children with developmental difficulties. More About Author

Ulrich Müller

Ulrich MüllerUlrich Müller is a professor of life-span development in the Dept. of Psychology at the University of Victoria. He currently serves as Dept. Chair. Dr. Müller’s research focuses on the development of self-regulation, the contribution of self-regulation to psychological adjustment and academic achievement, and the impact of parent-child interaction on the development of self-regulation. Dr. Müller was awarded the Early Scientific Achievement Award from the Society of Research in Child Development in 2005. He has published widely in journals such as Child Development, Developmental Psychology, and Journal of Experimental Child... More About Author

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