Cognitive Skills, Behavior and Learning Potential of Preschool Children with Down Syndrome

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Cognitive skills, behavior and learning potential of preschool children with Down Syndrome. University of Jaen (pronounced Ha-en), Spain.
This article describes the testing of the cognitive ability and learning potential of preschool children who have Down Syndrome. The children were compared against another group of children of the same age who do not have Down Syndrome. The testing occurred within the constructs of Vygotsky’s Social Learning theory. Both groups of children were given tests while under adult guidance, peer collaboration, and individually. The tests were conducted with both groups of children together (mixed), in groups, and individually. The results of the testing revealed that although the children with Down Syndrome required a lot more repetition, guidance, and practice they were able to learn the same material as the children who did not suffer from the disease. The Spanish researchers were testing the Down Syndrome children’s Zone of Proximal Development. The Zone of Proximal Development of the children with Down Syndrome proved to be the same as the children who do not suffer from the Down Syndrome. For both groups of children the learning process was the same. Although, the children with Down Syndrome made more mistakes and took a lot more time to learn, they eventually preformed the same tasks. The children with Down Syndrome presented several challenges and required different methods of teaching; they displayed delayed cognitive abilities, shorter attention span, a lower threshold for frustration, and increased impulsivity. The results of the intelligence testing yielded informative results. Although, children with Down Syndrome possess compromised cognitive abilities, they were able to learn the same material as children of the same age who do not suffer from the disease. The capability for learning new material is present; however, the children with down syndrome required special teaching methods and a longer...
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