Summarise the main development of a child from the age range
0-2 years, 3-5 years, 5-8 years
A child’s development refers to the process of learning new skills and abilities while obtaining emotional maturity. This follows the same basic pattern with all children but not necessarily at the same age.
Developmental change results from a combination of diet, genetic and environmental factors. Diet and genetics are the factors mainly responsible for the growth and change of proportion in both body and brain. Environmental factors, which include things such as quality of diet and disease, are responsible for emotional and cognitive change. Both genetic and environmental factors interact to create developmental change in a child as he/she grows.
There is no such thing as an “average child” and no two children will develop at the exactly same rate. I have found that a useful way of summarising these changes is by the use of SPICE1 which is composed of the following categories,
Communication & Language
I have therefore used this method to structure the following pages.
During the first two years of a child’s life they have a tendency to be extremely sociable. They will enjoy the contact of others, most especially their main care giver during the first three months. As they reach six months, they are starting to respond more to what is happening around them and exhibit a desire to be involved. Around the nine month mark, as their social skill develops, they will be enjoying the company of familiar faces but might start to become wary of strangers. By the end of the first year the child will start to be less dependent on others as they discover self-entertainment. It is very likely that they will enjoy music and nursery rhymes and be able to keep themselves amused for extended periods. As their confidence grows they will start to display a greater sense of identity. Upon reaching the age of two the child will usually exhibit a much increased level of confidence as their independence grows. They will also usually enjoy doing simple tasks, for example, learning to dress and feed themselves.
In the first three months a child will start to lift its head and kick vigorously. They will recognise the face of their main care giver, be able to watch movement of their own hands and to play with their fingers. After six months they will be grasping objects and transferring them from one hand to the other. Head control will be well advanced with them also attempting to put objects in their mouth. After nine months a child will usually become much more mobile, with the ability to get around by either rolling, shuffling or crawling. The ability to sit unaided usually improves and they will likely be able to grasp and throw toys. When the child reaches one year they will probably be crawling or walking and also developing the ability to climb stairs. Balance will still be difficult, but most children will use furniture to assist them. As the child reaches their second birthday they should be extremely mobile, with the ability to run, and even to negotiate steps or stairs (most probably two feet at a time). They are also likely to be able to throw and kick a ball but will be less able to catch as the hand eye co-ordination will still need to improve.
The first three months of age are the time when the child will be able to focus on objects close by (a few inches), listen to sounds and voices quite often turning their face towards the noise. They will tend to try to make eye contact and will root for the breast in an attempt to feed by themselves. By the sixth month they will have started to develop their co-ordination and they will be attracted towards bright colourful and/or shiny objects, often trying to reach for interesting things. As they approach nine months there will be a noticeable increase in the need for stimulation. They will