The head bone's connected to the neck bone: when do toddlers represent their own body topography?
Developments in very young children's topographic representations of their own bodies were examined. Sixty-one 20- and 30-month-old children were administered tasks that indexed the ability to locate specific body parts on oneself and knowledge of how one's body parts are spatially organized, as well as body-size knowledge and self-awareness. Age differences in performance emerged for every task. Body-part localization and body spatial configuration knowledge were associated; however, body topography knowledge was not associated with body-size knowledge. Both were related to traditional measures of self-awareness, mediated by their common associations with age. It is concluded that children possess an explicit, if rudimentary, topographic representation of their own body's shape, structure, and size by 30 months of age.
Brownell, CA; Nichols, SR; Svetlova, M; Zerwas, S; Ramani, G
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