The Developing Child © 2010
Intellectual Development from Seven to Twelve
In middle childhood and the preteen years, children make many advances in their intellectual abilities. Children move from the concrete operations stage to the formal operations stage at about age eleven, when they become capable of abstract thinking. Among those who developed important theories about intellectual development in the twentieth century are Piaget, Vygotsky, Montessori, Gardner, and Sternberg.
Direct learning, peer learning, and independent learning are different modes of learning that are appropriate to children ages seven to twelve. Middle school programs are specially designed to meet the educational and emotional needs of preteens. Between the ages of seven and twelve, students begin to take standardized tests that are specially designed to measure their intellectual performance and aptitudes.