Object Permanence

Object permanence is the realization that people and objects continue to exist even when they can’t be seen.  You know the saying, “Out of sight, out of mind?”  For young infants this is really true.  If a 5 month old is playing with a toy and you take it and hide it, she thinks it has disappeared forever.  But older infants between 8 and 12 months will go looking for the toy because they know it still exists.  This understanding extends to people too.  Children at this age have the security of knowing that their parents still exist even when they can’t see them.  This will actually lead to separation anxiety around the age of 1, because if an infant knows that dad and mom still exist, then why are they gone?  (Berger, 2018; Feldman, 2014).  More about this later with separation anxiety and attachment.  Enjoy the video below.



Berger, K. S. (2018). The developing person: Through Childhood and adolescence (11th

ed.). New York, NY: Worth.

Feldman, R. S. (2014). Child development: A topical approach. Boston, MA: Pearson.