The Upper School AP Psychology classes, taught by Mr. Leath, Dr. Levey, and Dr. Johnson, have been learning about Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget known for his theories in the cognitive development of children. Piaget’s pioneering research in the early 1900s pointed to a formal sequence of steps that children follow as their intellect develops over time, as opposed to the prior belief that children were similar to miniature adults.
To deepen their understanding of Piaget’s developmental psychology theories, the Upper Schoolers visited the RCDS Pre-Kindergarten class. Between 4 to 5 years old, Pre-K students are in what Piaget called the “preoperational stage” of development. Through leading fun activities with Play-Doh, stuffed animals, and photographs, the Upper Schoolers entertained their young schoolmates while also observing “conservation of mass”—where an object always contains the same mass no matter its shape—and “theory of mind”—where a child can take another’s point of view and infer what they may be thinking—concepts in action.
A highlight of the AP Psychology course, this annual Pre-K visit furthers the Upper Schoolers’ academic grasp of the curriculum content, and it offers a fun opportunity for cross-divisional community bonding.