chapter  9
18 Pages

The Education of Spatial T ransf ormations

By(with Joanne Rovet)

Several theories have been offered as to how spatial skills are "educated". Piaget and Inhelder maintained that a child acquires his

spatial abilities primarily from his own active involvement with real objects in the environment. A child acquires knowledge about the trajectories of falling objects by throwing and observing objects fall, learns about the changes in the shapes of objects by actually bending, and folding objects, and learns about the changes in the appearances of rotating objects by actually turning and manipulating objects in space. In fact, they argue that active manipulation of objects is absolutely necessary to develop the skills required for solving complex spatial problems because only active ex­ perience with real objects teaches the child both about the changes that oc­ cur to objects or groups of objects and about the coordination of the ac­ tions that produce these changes.