Spatial representation in the drawings of children with Down syndrome and its relationship to language and motor development: a preliminary investigation

GJ Laws, L Lawrence

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The drawings of 17 children with Down syndrome were compared to those produced by 17 typically developing children matched for receptive vocabulary. The children drew six arrays involving a toy bear with either a transparent or an opaque pot in three spatial arrangements; the bear was placed either inside, behind or beside the pot. There was wide variation in the children’s drawings of the bear in both groups. In the Down syndrome group, this was unrelated to chronological age, verbal mental age, language comprehension or to fine motor skills, but these measures were significantly related in the control group. Many of the children with Down syndrome showed poor understanding of spatial concepts which was strongly related to grammar comprehension. Those with very poor understanding adopted inconsistent strategies to represent the different spatial arrays. Strategies were not related to the maturity of the bear drawings nor to most other variables, except that children using a developmentally more advanced strategy demonstrated superior pencil control. The research supported the possibility of a different pattern to drawing development in Down syndrome rather than a delayed version of typical development.
Translated title of the contributionSaptial representation in the drawings of children with Down syndrome and it's relationship to language and motor development: a preliminary investigation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)453 - 473
Number of pages21
JournalBritish Journal of Developmental Psychology
Volume19
Publication statusPublished - 2001

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