Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Open Peer Commentary

Look Ma, no fingers! Are children numerical solipsists?

Peter Gordona1

a1 Biobehavioral Sciences Department, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027


I ask whether it is necessary that principles of number be mentally represented and point to the role of language in determining cultural variation. Some cultures possess extensive counting systems that are finite. I suggest that learning number principles is similar to learning conservation and, as such, might be derived from learning about the empirical properties of objects and other individuals in combinations.

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