As a preparation for making a more effective program for teaching Japanese syllabic characters to children, the auther did two preparatory experiments concerning the problem of interaction between the formation of the act of analyzing the phonemic structure of words and the learning of Japanese syllabic characters. In the first experiment, the act of children analyzing phonemic structure of words, especially to separate a word into syllables was investigated with sixty children from three to five years old. In the experiment, the children were first given a brief training with ten words, for example, /kuma/(a bear), /himawari/(a sun-flower). /ohinasama/(a doll), which are constructed of only Japanese fundamental syllables (V and C+V). And then their activities were tested and examined with thirty-six test words which included some words containing special kinds of Japanese syllables (long syllables, contracted ones, contracted long ones, assimilated ones and the syllabic nasal), for example, /zoo/(an elephant), /kiNgjo/(a golden fish), /gjuunjun/(milk), /rokeQto/(a rocket), kabaN (a bag). In the second experiment. two kinds of tasks were given to another seventy-six pre-school children from four to six years of age. One was to discover the Japanese phoneme /ko/in a word syllabifying it, and the other was to identify the first, the middle, and the last phoneme of a word. And the degree or level of each child's performance was examined in the relation to the degree of his acquisition of knowledge of Japanese syllabic characters. In both experiments, special instruments were used. They were designed on the same principle as training pictures which D, B, El' konin and his collaborators used in their studies. The instrument used in the first experiment was constructed with a lampboard containing sixteen small white lamps in two parallel rows of eight lamps each (the upper row for model given by experimenter, the lower row for child's use) and two switch boxes (one for the child, the other for the experimenter). The switch box used by the child contained eight key-like switches in a row like those of a piano. In training the child, the experimenter first showed a picture expressing the meaning of a given word and pronounced the word slowly, pausing between syllables and turning on one lamp for each syllable he pronounced. The lamps were lit in the upper row beginning at the left-hand side of the row. And then the child was required to imitate the experimenter's act, to syllabify the word aloud switching on the same number of lamps in the lower row as the experimenter had turned on in the upper row. When the child failed to do this, the procedure was repeated again up to five times. When testing the child, the experimenter only showed a picture card, said the word it represented, and required the child to do the same as he had done during the training process. In the second experiment, the experimenter used a picture with a horizontal row of squares below it. There were as many squares as syllables in the word represented by the picture. After training with five words, the child was required to syllabify a word aloud putting small wooden blocks in the squares corresponding to articulated syllables, and then if his act was right, he was asked whether /ko/was in the word, and which block corresponded to /ko/. After this task with fifteen words, he was further asked to identify the first, the middle, the last phonemes of another six words. The main findings and suggestions which were gained in these experiments are as follows: 1) All the children over four and a half years of age were found to be able to syllabify almost perfectly words containing only fundamental syllables with the help of an instrument at the material level. It means that children of this age can accept more systimatic training in the analysis of the phonemic structure of words.
The present study aimed at investigating the process of acquiring knowledge in children. It was hypothesized that this was the internalizing process from an external act to an internal one. That was the following process: (i) the formation of an orientating basis,(ii) the formation of an act for the object,(iii) the transformation of the concrete form of the act into outer speech and (iv) the transformation of outer speech into inner speech. For this purpose, the acquisition process of the horizontality of water surface was examined by the method of the experimental education. First, the state of this acquisition was studied with one hundred 4-8 year-old children. Then two experiments, which followed Pre-test-Instruction-Post-test paradigm, were undertaken. In these experiments, unsuccessful Ss at a Pre-test were used. Experiment I: the acceleration of the acquisition caused by the experimental education was examined with eighty 5-8 year-old children. Experiment II: the difference of the effect of the acceleration of the acquisition caused by five different experimental educations was examined with. fifty 8 year-old children. The results were as follows: 1) Children's representation of water surface was. very difficult and was not perfectly attained by 8 year-old children. This result agreed with Piaget's findings. 2) The results of Exp. I clarified that water surface representation was easily influenced by the short term experimental education based on the above-mentioned hypothesis, And it was clarified that the instruction program, which taught water surface with reference to the table line on which bottles were placed, had some problems. The unscientific instruction program, in some cases, acted as check condition for the true acquisition. 3) The results of Exp. II showed that the instruction program based on the hypothesis, which taught water surface with reference to vertical line, was more effective than other instruction programs and that it had an effect not only on the acceleration of the acquisition but on its retention. So far as the present study is concerned, it seems to me that the acquisition of knowledge was accelerated by the instruction program, in which I intended Ss for internalizing the external act. But some problems still remain in this instruction program. Therefore, whether the process of acquiring knowledge is that of internalizing from external act to internal one or not, would be gradually clarified through the improvement of the instruction program, the electrophysiological investigation of inner speech and so on.
The purpose of this study is to examine the effects, in the perceptual-motor task, of the massed and distributed practice (called MP and DP respectively) of the subjects divided by sex and abilities. The anticipation was established that the effects of MP and DP will vary with sex, but not with high and low abilities. The present study thus consists of three experiments. In experiment I, the second grade pupils of elementary school were asked to copy the alphabetical letters as fast as possible. In experiment II, the second grade students of middle school were solicited to write inverted Katakana (the Japanese letters) as fast and exact as possible. In experiment III, the fourth grade pupils of elementary school were instructed to perform a substitution task as fast as possible. The subjects in each experiment learned each task in terms of MP and DP. The results were as follows. 1. The performance results measured by the learning speed. (1) A significant difference was not observed between the effects of MP and DP both in the case of males and in the case of females in experiment I and II. However, a significant difference was found in experiment III. In addition, the results from experiment I and II indicated the same trend as those from experiment (2) The difference failed to reach the significance level between males and females, when MP and DP were disregarded. Only in experiment III, there was a trend that the performance by females was superior to that by males, but the difference was not significant. (3) The effects of MP and DP were not significantly different at the ability levels. In experiment I, however, a tendency was seen that the performance was different between MP and DP in the low ability group. However, the high ability group showed nearly the same performance in MP and DP. (4) The speed of learning was significantly faster in the high ability group than in the low ability group. 2. The performance results measured by the errors. (1) There was not a significant difference in the errors between MP and DP either in the case of males or in the case of females in experiment II. (2) The difference was not significant in the errors between males and females. (3) A tendency was found that the difference in the performance between MP and DP seemed larger in the low ability group than in the high ability group. However, there was not a significant difference between the effects of MP and DP either in the case of the high ability group or in the case of the low ability group. (4) The errors of the high ability group were significantly fewer than those of the low ability group. 3. The above results seem almost to support the anticipation concerning the performance viewed from learning speed. The personality traits of males and females, the learning conditions of MP and DP, and the distraction and recovery of set in ability groups were discussed in connection with the results obtained here. As the present study is only one trial of a series of research, further studies will be called for in the future.
Various scoring systems on Bender-Gestalt test (BGT) have been devised. It seems that Pascal and Suttel (P & S) scoring system in them has been applied many times because it is rather objective. But it is said that it has too many factors to score easily. Koppitz published her scoring system which modified the P & S system for younger children. These scoring systems may respectively have some problems from the view point of development. The purpose of this study is to compare the P & S scoring system with the koppitz system applied to the same data, and to discuss how they acquire the developmental process of BGT and which is more suitable to catch it. Subjects are consisted of 266 boys and 211 girls aged 5 to 17. The following are the results of testing. First, the scores of both P & S's and Koppitz's decrease remarkably between 5 and 6 years. Therefore, it seems that the visual-motor function makes rapid development in these years. Next, the score of Koppitz's reaches a plateau at the age of 9, while that of P & S's decreases gradually even to 17 years. Koppitz's scoring system is found available to catch roughly the developmental change of BGT in the age range of 5-9 years, but insufficient to catch a qualitative change of development reflected on BG T. P & S's scoring system is more efficient than Koppitz's system, because the former can catch the qualitative change of development more in detail, even though it has too many factors to score easily.