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Piaget and Mead: Morality & Self Development in Children

Hi, I need help with the 2 questions below. Thanks for any help you could provide.

1- Many states, in recent years have changed their laws so that children who commit violent crimes, such as murder can be charged as adults. Thinking about Piaget's findings on how children develop reasoning skills, discuss the following: How old do you think a person needs to be to know the difference between right and wrong and to know that murder is wrong? What should be the youngest cutoff age to hold a person who kills another person legally responsible for the crime of murder?

2- Observe young children playing, either in your own family, or in public settings. Based on the games they play and George Herbert Meadâ??s theory of the development of the self, can you tell if they are in the play or game stage? Post your observations here.

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Dear Student,
Hi. I am sure that once you understand these concepts, it will be quite easy for you to find them expressed in observations of everyday life. The solution below should get you started. Good luck with your studies and thank you for using Brainmass.

OTA 105878/Xenia Jones

Piaget & Juvenile Justice

For Piaget, a child via observation, learning and exposure to his family, community and environment builds mental maps, schemes and cognitive structures that allow him to make sense of the world. There are 4 important parts to this theory which he calls developmental stages. They are as follows (Questia, 2011):

? "Sensorimotor stage (birth - 2 years old)-The child, through physical interaction with his or her environment, builds a set of concepts about reality and how it works. This is the stage where a child does not know that physical objects remain in existence even when out of sight (object permanance).
? Preoperational stage (ages 2-7)-The child is not yet able to conceptualize abstractly and needs concrete physical situations.
? Concrete operations (ages 7-11)-As physical experience accumulates, the child starts to conceptualize, creating logical structures that explain his or her physical experiences. Abstract problem solving is also possible at this stage. For example, arithmetic equations can be solved with numbers, not just with objects.
? Formal operations (beginning at ages 11-15)-By this point, the child's cognitive structures are like those of an adult and include conceptual reasoning."

From the above, we can see that children reason out in a qualitative way, they cannot quantify thought patterns and until the very last stage, lack the ability to reason conceptually. Adults are tried in the justice system based on their ability to conceptually reason, to understand the consequences of their actions, to have a grasp of what is ...

Solution Summary

The solution is a 1,173-word narrative that tackles questions on juvenile/child deviancy and the development of reasoning and morality that shape ideas of right and wrong particularly the issue of legal responsibility in juveniles who commit heinous crimes despite their young age; all these are discussed in light of Piaget's theory. Additionally, a sample situation discussing an observation exercise of children at play to explore Mead's theory of the development of the self is also included to discuss stages of play or game and what this means in the development of the self via symbolic interaction. References are listed. A word version of the solution is attached for easy printing and download.