Social and Moral Development
As children grow and develop, they go through a variety of stages responsible for their social and moral development. The stages that Kohlberg has presented provide a framework of information that we are able to gather data from and identify behaviors as the child progresses through normal human development. Just like most things, social and moral development is molded by the surrounding environment and individual interactions. Just like the many other factors that affect development, social and moral development can provide a variety of differences and can evolve as the child grows older. Having the ability to understand the differences between each stage is a critical step for anyone trying to understand these aspects of child development. Social understanding and moral development as they relate to each phase are critical in order to see the bigger picture. Each age level provides its own unique set of observations and behaviors that must be taken into account and as we will see, they can change and adapt to fit the needs of child while in a specific stage. Starting with infancy, social understanding and morality is at its most basic form. The child’s awareness is just forming as they start to rely on others on how to respond to certain situations and environments. Combining certain words with behaviors is just forming while reactions to external behaviors begin to develop (McDevitt & Ormrod, 2004). There is little room for morality in this stage as social understanding takes most of the developmental process at this age. During early childhood, social understanding and moral development begin to have more of an effect on the child and are easier to observe from an external point of view. During this stage, awareness is starting to gain traction as the child begins to understand more about others mental and emotional states (McDevitt & Ormrod, 2004). Seeing different perspectives and showing emotions such as empathy...
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