Perceptual Development in Infancy
A: Perceptual development refers to the development of cognitive skills involved in identifying, distinguishing, and interpreting sensory information.
A: The environment around us is full of information, and we receive information every day through our multiple senses.
A: Infants start developing their perceptual abilities from the first day of their life as they begin interacting with the environment.
A: According to Piaget’s theory, infants and toddlers are in the sensorimotor stage of cognitive development. During this stage, sensory and motor experiences are key to cognitive development.
A: Infants’ perceptual abilities promote other cognitive skills, including their concept of objects, spatial relationships and causal relationships.
A: Infants’ perceptual development is reflected as they begin to show interest towards what happens around them, react based on sensory stimuli experienced, explore the environment using multiple senses, distinguish among different properties, and show preferences for what they like and dislike.
A: In the first six months, infants gradually recognise familiar faces, turn their heads towards sounds, react when being touched and when experience different smells and tastes.
A: Since exploration with senses promotes perceptual abilities, it is important to ensure that the environment for children to explore is safe and free of hazards.
A: One of the ways that infants learn is through imitation and attention maintenance. Praising your children for their interests in exploration and showing interest in exploring the environment with multiple senses by describing your feelings and sensations will encourage infants to utilise these senses and draw their attention and interests towards things around them in the environment.
A: When deciding what toys and materials to include in the environment, you can arrange common objects with diverse characteristics that invite using different senses.