5-Year-Old Children Performing Piaget’s Liquid Conservation Tasks Demonstrated in Physical and Digital Environment

  •  Christos Sakkas    
  •  Stavroula Samartzi    


This study investigates the understanding of Piaget's concept of liquid conservation in 5-year-old children, comparing physical and digital environments of executing conservation tasks. Involving 86 participants (equal gender representation), it employs an Android tablet to demonstrate the pouring of water between glasses with animated images in a digital environment condition and real glasses (one short-wide and one long-narrow) filled with water for the physical environment condition. Each child completed four distinct conservation tasks, each one 3 times, designed to parallel each other in both environments. Two of the tasks concerned the general concept of conservation, and the other two were either about identity or compensation or reversibility concepts. The study aims to determine whether digital environments can be as effective as physical ones in teaching fundamental conservation concepts, exploring the impact of emerging digital learning tools versus traditional methods. Another objective of this study is to find associations between the general concept of conservation and the three other concepts: identity, compensation, and reversibility. This research contributes to the understanding of cognitive development in children and the efficacy of digital versus physical learning aids by verifying that children perceive physical and virtual learning with the same effectiveness.

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