What is it about?

This study examined the effects of an early cognitive intervention (Think Bright program) in enhancing the cognitive and language development of Hong Kong preschoolers with developmental delay. Our results demonstrated that preschoolers with mild developmental delay benefited more from cognitive training when their teachers adopted the mediated learning approach, in contrast to those who received a similar amount of training conducted via a more teacher-centered approach.

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Why is it important?

The Think Bright project was the first of its kind in Hong Kong. This study showed promising results with respect to the effectiveness of this early cognitive intervention program. The preschoolers in the Think Bright group displayed significantly larger improvement in language and thinking skills when compared to the control group. Moreover, the Think Bright teachers showed improved mediation skills and agreed that this programme allowed them to realize their students’ learning potentials through mediation.

Perspectives

Although this study was conducted in the preschool rehabilitation setting, we postulated that this training could also be implemented in the regular curriculum for teaching thinking skills among typically developing children. It is important to nurture the critical dispositions of good thinkers in young children, including traits such as open-mindedness, curiosity, attention to evidence, systematic thinking, and imaginativeness, and instilling in them the enjoyment of thinking.

Dr. Kathy KM Shum
University of Hong Kong

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This page is a summary of: Early cognitive intervention using mediated learning for preschoolers with developmental delay: A randomized controlled trial, British Journal of Educational Psychology, February 2022, Wiley, DOI: 10.1111/bjep.12490.
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