Poster E129, Monday, March 26, 2:30-4:30 pm, Exhibit Hall C
The development of planning in tool use: EEG, eye tracking, motion tracking, and video
Ori Ossmy1, Brianna Kaplan1, Danyang Han1, Melody Xu1, Karen Adolph1; 1New York University
Flexible, purposeful tool use requires action planning. Adults’ action plans keep both the initial contact with the tool and the end goal in mind, even when the end goal stretches far into the future. Children, however, show dramatic deficits in planning when the end goal is not immediately accessible to perception. For example, participants of all ages normally reach for the handle of a hammer using an overhand radial grip. But when the environment changes and the handle points away from the dominant hand, an initially uncomfortable underhand grip is required to ensure the desired final position of the tool. Here, we examined the possible sources of differences in action planning between young children and adults. We innovated a novel method for obtaining electroencephalography (EEG), head-mounted eye tracking, motion tracking, and video simultaneously in an hammering task. At the neural level, we found differences in readiness potential over sensory-motor sites preceding grips in adults and flexible children compared with no differences in readiness potential preceding grips in non-flexible children. We used machine-learning algorithms to describe preparatory neural patterns underlying differences in planning between the groups. We also show that participants’ fixation location and motion kinematics are correlated with flexibility. These results indicate that young children’s deficits in planning for flexibility stem from differences in neural activity and visual attention prior to moving the hand.
Topic Area: PERCEPTION & ACTION: Development & aging