Anyone working with children of any age should have a strong detailed knowledge of the different aspect of development from birth to 19 years. These areas are,
- Physical development
- Communication development
- Intellectual/cognitive development
- Social, emotional and behavioural development
- Moral development
This is where children learn to grasp and conquer control over their body movements. Physical development is normally split into 2 groups. Fine motor skills- this is used to refer to movements that are seen as delicate and done with the fingers i. e. holding a pencil, fine motor skills is also linked to vision and is normally known as hand eye coordination and is used together when a child may be tying their shoe lace. Gross motor skills-this is used to refer to whole body movements for example a baby sitting up, crawling, learning to walk then to progress to things like kicking or throwing of a ball. Throughout the first 5 years of a child’s life this skills are developed at a fast rate.
This is where children learn to communicate with others and understand their own communication. This done in many ways depending on the child age and ability, starting with just making a sound to get attention, to learning to read, write, use sign language to starting to understand communicating with the use of body language. Communication development is linked to intellectual/cognitive development as children learn to think and understand before they communicate.
Intellectual/cognitive development covers a huge area of development within the brain. Covering things like memory, concentration, imagination, creativity, problem solving, knowledge and understanding. The brain learns to processes and development information that the child is learning on daily basis from their surroundings and other people. Examples of cognitive skills are being able to remember someone’s name and the difference between 2 colours.
Social, Emotional and Behavioural Development
This is where the child learns to express and control their own emotion which links to the child learning what behaviour is acceptable. A good example of this is frustration at not being able to do something, as the child grows and develops, they will be able to control what emotions and behaviour are acceptable in certain situations. This also has strong ties with cognitive and communication development, for example been attached to a loved one: for a child to be able to express emotion they must first be able to communicate with that person and understand.
This is where children and young people learn about the principles and values they hold to help make the right decision throughout life. These values and principles may be ones that have been enforced upon them either from society or family upbringing. Moral development is linked strongly with social, emotional and behavioural development, because morality involves the way we are accepted into a social group this may stir up emotion that have to be controlled therefore this may have an impact on behaviour.
Moral development is also linked to intellectual/cognitive development because to be able to develop values and principle one must be able to think and to be able to make decisions. This development tables shows a snap shot of a child’s developmental stages throughout birth to 19 years.
The sequence of development is the pattern or order that the developmental stages are expected to happen. These are also known as the developmental norms or milestones, a lot of the developmental sequences are divided into age range i. . birth -1 years, 1- 4 years, 4- 11 years, 11-16 years and 16-19years. This is to help show you what the child is meant to be achieving at certain ages in their lives. The rate of development is the speed in which a child achieves the developmental stage or norm. As every child is individually different this also means they develop at an individual rate, For example a baby may roll over then sits up, crawl, walk, run, where another child may sit up, walk, run, missing out rolling over & crawling.
Even thou the child have missed a stage in the sequence they are still seen to be following the expected pattern of norms. It is important to understand that the sequence and rate and development work together to provide a guideline of the development norms and to be able to record or measure when a child has accomplished these milestones, to help see if the child may need any additional support with their development. There are many things that set children apart from one another, but when children are the same age the main thing is their development.
The development of a child starts from the day they were conceived, their genetic codes are imprinted in them for example eye/hair colour. During pregnancy the mother plays a big role in the first stages of the child’s development if the mother smokes, takes drugs, drinks alcohol then this could cause significant damages to the baby’s development: during pregnancy after birth and later on in life. “It can cause birth defects like facial deformities, and can cause learning difficulties and problems with emotional development. It can stunt your baby’s ability to grow, even after it is born. (NHS. uk ,2012)
Even during birth the child’s development can be effect, babies that have a tricky birth can suffer from lack of oxygen with can affect the brain function resulting in learning difficulties in later life. Once a child has entre the world there are many factors that can influence the way they develop, these factors normally fall into 2 categories PERSONAL and EXTERNAL factors. Personal factors include the health status of the child, if the child has any disability which can be a sensory impairment (sight, touch, hearing or any form of communication) and learning difficulties.
If a child is ill this could be a simple cold to a virus that they will recover from either in or out of hospital can have an impact on the child’s development, as the illness may cause them to miss school, been in a simulating environment for, example play group, child minder or just missing quality time interacting with family or friends. If the illness is causing the child to have lack of energy or stamina then they won’t be able to concentrate on any task or fully take in the information been taught. The health status of a child could be a little more serious, as they may suffer from a defect they were born with i. . congenital heart disease (CHD) which would also cause the child to miss school or not be able to take part in everyday life of school.
The child may have limits in which they can participate within certain lesson/ activities “Permitted activity levels are determined by your child’s health care team. In general, activity restrictions are graded in the following manner: Full: The child is allowed to exercise at will and participate fully in all sports. No competitive sports: The child is allowed to exercise but is not allowed to participate in races, organized games, or team sports. (About kid’s health 2004-2012) “Vygotsky believed that children learn through social interaction and relationships” (Walker, M, Children & young people’s workforce, 2011) So expanding on Vygotsky theory a child missing regular school, social activities i. e. play group or family interactions, are likely to have some effects on their development. Social and emotional development been the biggest, having less interaction may cause the children to become anxious, stressed and withdrawn with any social situation, this can lead to the child becoming anger or depressed.
These emotions can result in the child no be able to reach development milestone like:
- relating well to other children and adults;
- making friends and get on with others;
- feeling secure and valued;
- explore and learn confidently; and ultimately
- feeling good about themselves.
The child’s physical development may also be affected too, as not be able to interact in physical activities can influence how fast a child reaches certain milestone for example jump or hop one footed, catching or throwing a ball, skipping or walking backwards.
If a child has broken their leg it would be a setback in the development due to having to learn to walk again. The cognitive development could also be cause for concern as if this is effected it has a knock on affected with the other developmental areas, as if a child does reach certain milestone for example. Demonstrate awareness of the past and present. Actively seek answers to questions. Learn by observing and listening to instructions. Have a longer attention span. Asks “why” questions to gain information. This will change the way the child social and emotional milestone are met.
Personal factors also include whether the child has a disability which incorporates sensory impairments and learning difficulties, some child are born with a disability such as autism, downs syndrome, physical disabilities, visual impairment or hearing impairments, other child may obtain a disability due to accident. Any of these can have an impacted on several aspect of a child’s development.
As a child learns to communicate and socialise through imitation of others, a child with a disability like a visual impairment may not be able to develop though skills at the same rate has a child with out, this is because a child with this impairment can’t read expression on someone’s face to see how they are feeling, join in with games like tag due to fast movement of objects or do day to day tasked like getting themselves ready or fed. Struggling to do these tasks freely can make a child scared and anxious, so these in turns leave the child’s social development lacking behind.
Feeling anxious and scared may play a part in hat’s child physical development making them fearing the unknown , certain skills like learning to run, stack blocks or catching a ball as these gross and fine motor skills milestones will have to be modified to fit the child’s needs. Children that are born with downs syndrome may suffer from many developmental issue and health problems, such a noticeable physical appearance, their ability to learn, think and speak are slower, their physical ability to walk, run or catch a ball, but as stated on the downs syndrome association website, “We do know that every baby born with Down’s syndrome will have some degree of learning disability.
This means that it takes longer to process information, to learn new skills, and that tasks and learning may need to be broken down into smaller steps. It does not mean that people cannot learn. Children with Down’s syndrome do learn to walk, talk and be toilet trained but in general will reach these developmental milestones later than other children. ” (Downs syndrome association, 2013) Even though a child has a disability doesn’t mean they can’t develop, this just mean they do it at their own pace.
External factors can also influence a child or young person’s development these factors can range from poverty and deprivation, the child’s or young person’s family and background, their personal choice in life, whether the child or young person is been looked after, either by family member other than mum and dad, or in social care and their education. All children and young people continuously experience external factors some more damaging than others.
Poverty and derivation can be a very upsetting for any family to go through, if a family is in some state of poverty they are constantly wondering whether they can survive, whether basic needs like food, water and safe, dry warm place to stay can be obtained on a daily basis. For a child or young person living in this situation can be very scary and worrying, due to been in this sort of situation can have a dramatic effect of how they development and due to this they may not be able to fully achieve their potential.
Maslow developed a theory that humans are unable to fulfil their potential (which he called self-actualisation) unless their basic needs are met. ” (Walker, M, Children & young people’s workforce, 2011) He developed a ‘hierarchy of needs’ also known as Maslow’s pyramid it consists of 5 layers of different levels of needs as show in the diagram below [pic][pic][pic] This means if a child does not have their physiological needs met then they may not be able to full progress through the layers. Their phyiscal development may be jeopardiesed, lack of water and poor or no food can affect bone growth which can lead to other health problems.
Poor housing can lead to the child not having a safe place to sleep and the surrounding areas may not provide a safe place to play and interact with other children which can make a child feel very withdrawn from socity, in result the child can lack awarness of the out side world, their confidenace and self esstem will aslo be affected. A child’s family environment plays a massive part in how a child develops and learns right from wrong, how they express their feelings and thoughts, how they mix with soicity and devlope an indivual look on the world.
This is achived by the child having a loving safe family enviroment to learn from, as in most families the mother and father supports and encouages child gives them the love and attention they need to thrive, unfortunately not all family families are so loving and don’t provide the basis needs of the child, this can lead to the child making the wrong choices ie turning to drugs and alcohol which can affect their health, they can become depressed or anxious which can lead to mental health problem, all these problems can cause a child to miss school affecting their cognitive development as well as the social and emotional development.
Personal choices in life play a big part in the young person becoming more of an independent individual, either if the child has been brought up in loving caring family there is no guarantee that that young person with also make the right choices and the same for a child brought up in a violent uncaring family, the is no guarantee they will make the wrong choice. They are external factor why child make the right or wrong choice for example: peer pressure, other peoples other views beliefs and ethos other than those of mum, dad and immediate family, in which you may not agree with now.
These factors may add pressure to the choice you make, while some young people will choose to use drugs, drink alcohol and have sex at a young age, which can have a massive effect on their physical development as it can cause damage to internal organs, and brain damage. Their mental development can also be effected short term but with prolonged use the effects can be long term these include anxiety disorder, mood disorder and hallucinations. Whereas others choose to stick in at school and try their best to achieve their full potential.
When a child is growing up it is important to their development that they have a strong attachment to the primary carer that is a consistent influence in their life, in most cases its mum or dad, or it might be a family relative or a child minder. Having a primary carer creates a daily routine that the child can get used too, this ensure the child in been looked after in a stable loving environment, where day to day issues like bullying, growing up and life changes, can be shared within that environment to ensure the child receives the efficient support needed.
There are many situations where the child may not have a primary carer or a consistent stable environment, for example family breakdowns, unsatisfactory parental care or youth offending any other these can result in that child been looked after by local authorities either until the problem is solved or the child may be placed in permanent residential care/foster care, this may result in the child been moved around several time throughout their childhood.
Regardless of the length of time that the child is been looked after by local authorities, this can have a huge impact on my aspects of that child development. The child emotional development may suffer the most as they may blame themselves causing them to become depressed or withdrawn; depending on the situation the child might feel unable to trust adults in the same way causing anxiety and stress. This knocks a child confidence and self-esteem, so interaction with other children becomes more difficult which effects the social development.
Education is vital to a child development, as this is where children do majority of their learning and social interaction. It is important to say that education doesn’t solely come from schools that the children attend. Education is found in many formats and places, from out of school clubs, brownies, scouts, attending church and also at home. If a child is given many opportunities to fulfil their potential in life then they become actively engaged in what their learning and may want to progress in more activities to expand their already existing knowledge.
All this will have a positive impact on the child development and they will be confident with in my selves to learn, grow and socialize. Some children don’t experience the same positive learning as others, bullying and self-worth (been told either at home or from other children that’s they aren’t good enough or thick) can have a negative impact on how someone learns, a child experiencing these problem builds up fears due to the environment they are learning in. hese fear make the child to become withdrawn, upset, their self-esteem and confidence is knocked, this all lead to the child focusing on the worry and pain and not be able to concentrate fully on the learning prospects.
Throughout children life they are constantly been monitored and assessed, this is to ensure the child is meeting the developmental milestone and are not in need of any additional support. Monitoring the child could help identify any learning disabilities, impairment such as hearing or sight problems etc. identifying these problems as soon as possible could be the key to the child developing at the normal rate, or preventing the problem getting any worse and causing any other difficulties. There are many ways to monitor and record a child progress; this can be done through Standard measurements this is normally done by a professional person like a doctor, health visitor or nurse. This form of monitoring is to ensure the child is growing and developing at the right rate of sequence for their ages.
The usage of standard measurement includes:
- Growth assessments (e. g. height, weight and head circumference) assessed from birth.
- Auditory assessments (e. g. levels of response)
- Cognitive aptitude test (widely carried out in schools)
- Reasoning assessments (carried out by psychologists).
Child are monitored and accessed through play and other relvant experiences for that child age. To access whether there is a need for any additional support, and how that additonal need is to be met. Observations are carried on on daily/weekly basis throughtout the child learning establishment, this is to assess the progress of the child. These daily assesment always help build a bigger picture of what the child has learnt and what they can or may have problems achiving for example drawing a circle with a compass.
Any information observed on a child must be passed to the class teacher even if the information is not recored or shared with other teachers as they may not be a need for it. Some observations are done to help the teacher keep a records of the child level of development ie speaking a listening, all the gathered information can be used to pass on to parent/carer to inform them of child progress or any area that need work on.
Information from carers and colleagues could be very important as they may have been able to observe something that one else has, which could be the last bit of the jigsaw for that child be able to get additional support. As parent and carer tend to their child best they have a lot to contribute towards their learning, some child may be finding certain things difficult but are too scared to tell the class teacher, so they could feel safe confiding in other member of staff or family, so sharing this information is useful all round, so the calls teacher can assist in any way possible .
Through out a childs life they will experience different situations that cause some sort of change to their life, these are called transitions. There are 4 different types of transitions Emontional- personal experiences such as parent’s separating, bereavement, begining or leaveing a place of care. Physical-change in environments, chage of school, new house or location. Physiological-puberty or medical conditions long term. Intellectual- moving from pre-school to primary or from primary to secondary school. Some of the changes wether it from any of the 4 types of transitions can be miner for example transition from bottle to sippy cup, milk to soild food, or major transition like lose of family member or puberty, they all have some sort of effect on a child’s development some more effected than other.
It is hard to say how a child will react in certain situation as all children are different and deal with situations in different ways, you would generally think a child going through a bereavement would be more emotionally effected than a child moving school for example, but this may not be the case, the child’s ability to deal and understand things, is generally down their age, their personality social understanding and whether or not the child has previous experience to change.
Any one of these changes put pressure on child to feel something and in many cases they don’t know how to cope. Common effects on development to any sort of transition is the child feeling anxious and withdrawn, upset, nervous this can stop the child interaction skills growing with them, feeling left out or weird due to physical changes making the child frightened questioning themselves “why me” this can also but a big part of a family break up the child blames themselves as they can’t understand or accept why its happening.
It is very important to have positive caring realstionship with child while they are going through any sort of transition, this is to ensure the child has the moral support when they need it, depending on the circumstant the support given may not be from a family member the child may find support or comfort from been around close friends, a teacher, or may be a child going through the same problem.
I feel it is also important that the child is kept informed of any changes for example a family break up, it might be easier for the child to understand the break up if they are told in advance that changes may happen and that it is not their fault, this will give the child security and time for them to get used to the idea, maybe talk to someone else about the break up. The person or persons supporting the child need to understand the child may develop behaviour problems due to the situation and make allowance for this until the child is able to cope better.
Just making the child aware that your there for them whether it be to talk to, let off some anxiety or just a hug they need to feel that is ok to be upset and the feelings that they are expressing are normal.