Child development has five separate stages. The stages consist of infancy (birth-2), early childhood (ages 2-6), middle childhood (6-10), early adolescence (10-14), and late adolescence 14-18). Each stage has different types of developmental achievements that will be reached. This paper will serve as a comparison for the early and middle childhood developmental periods. During the early childhood stage children body begin to change and lose baby like appearance. They begin to learn fine motor skills. These skills enable them to grip things, such as a pencil in a more functionally. This is a great time to encourage them to play with puzzles and blocks, as well as on the use scissors and paper. It is normal for boys to be more physically active then girls both will show an increase in energy. Children will develop more control over their motor skills enabling them for further development of new activities like running, jumping, swinging, and climbing. Children continue to grow by gaining weight and gaining height at a steady pace. Their fine motor skills become controlled, allowing them to become more fluent in reading and drawing. This is the stage when a child will begin to participate in organized sports. They will also begin to lose their baby teeth and see new permanent teeth emerge in their place. Self-organized play is displayed at this time. It is important to encourage both self-organized play and participation in organized activities and sports. This will help with both physical and social development. Children in this age group still hold a desire to be close to their parents or caregivers; especially when sad or scared. They have an increasing awareness of self-conscious emotions like guilt, shame, and pride. They are now able to understand and display a wide range of emotions. The way that a child expresses their emotions during this stage can vary greatly. Some are able to remain controlled and composed; while others may throw tantrums and be very expressive of their feelings. They are also more aware of their talents and as such tend to be more confident in completing academic and physical tasks. Early childhood is when children begin to form more bonds outside of family. This includes peers, teachers, and other adults as well. Children will typically still have high self-confidence at this stage. Children gain increasing control over their emotions. It is important to point out that control over their emotions can greatly be affected by how their parents or other role models handle their own emotions. Children can be greatly affected by disturbances in their environment. Things like divorce and death. It is during these times that caregivers need to ensure they provide their children with support while coping with their feelings. There begins to be some development in learning simple strategies by modeling others behavior. Children at this age are very distractible. When trying to work on an activity with a child during stage it is wise to minimize any potential distractions. They will also have very short attention spans; therefore, it is recommended to change activities often. This is a great time to start adding to a child’s experiences. Taking little trips to the library, local museums, zoos, and fire departments will increase the child’s knowledge base. Cognitive Development (Middle Childhood)
Children now gain a limited ability to multi-task. They have the ability to concentrate on one thing and block out some distractions. Children at this stage will begin to their thoughts in a more logical way. They begin to gain atomization of some basic skills. They are starting to acquire greater problem solving skills which allow them to understand basic arithmetic. Intelligence during this stage is relatively basic. They can name familiar objects. Most children will be able to count and can identify shapes as well as colors. Children at this stage should be able to recognize some letters as...
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Berk, L. E. (2010). Exploring lifespan development (2nd ed.). Boston, MA
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