Child and Young Person Development
The main stages of child and young person development
From birth through to adulthood children continually grow, develop, and learn.
A child’s development can be measured through social, emotional, intellectual, physical and language developmental milestones.
All children and young people follow a similar pattern of development so the order in which each child advances from one milestone to the next will be roughly the same. However, each child will develop at a different rate and their development may not progress evenly across all areas. Therefore teaching practices aimed at child development should seek to simultaneously address each one of the developmental areas.
In general, child development progresses: From head to toe. Beginning at the top of the body and gradually moving downwards From inner to outer. Firstly gaining control of muscles close to the trunk/head and then moving outwards so the large muscles in the shoulders and upper arms/thighs are first and the extremities last From simple to complex; children progress from simple words to complex sentences From general to specific; emotional responses involve the whole body in young babies but may involve only the face in an older child
Areas of development
It is important to understand how children develop physically, socially, emotionally and intellectually to know that all areas of development are equally as important as each other, and that all impact on one another.
Physical development includes movement skills, gross motor skills, fine motor skills and eye hand co-ordination.
Children’s physical development can be supported by: Providing space and some equipment for the development of movement skills and gross motor skills and adequate supervision
Providing material and equipment for the improvement of fine motor skills
Providing cooking, sewing, woodwork and other activities to enhance hand-eye coordination.