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date: 17 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The purpose of this chapter is to provide a review of the literature demonstrating that young children (between three and seven years of age) are often more confused than older school-age children and adults about what they did and what they imagined doing. As the chapter shows, these age differences are not a reflection of a general memory deficit or an immature cognitive system. Rather, young children's memory confusions are sensitive to the content of their imaginations (e.g., their embellishments), the source of that content (e.g., children or other people), and the processes giving rise to the imaginations (e.g., spontaneous vs. more intentional). The chapter highlights intriguing implications of the study of children's source monitoring for theoretical perspectives on the development of imagination and offers suggestions for new research on the potential of imaginative acts for promoting learning.

Keywords: imagery, imagination, realization judgments, source monitoring, spontaneous imagery

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