Child Development: Birth To Adolescence


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The dorsolateral frontal cortex is responsible for strategic processing.

Stages of Child Development From Infancy to Adolescence

The parietal cortex is important in controlling perceptual-motor integration and the basal ganglia and supplementary motor cortex are responsible for motor sequences. Intra-limb correlations, like the strong relationship and distance between hip and knee joints, were studied and proved to affect the way an infant will walk. There are also bigger genetic factors like the tendency to use the left or right side of the body more, predicting the dominant hand early.

Sample t-tests proved that there was a significant difference between both sides at 18 weeks for girls and the right side was considered to be more dominant Piek et al. Some factors, like the fact that boys tend to have larger and longer arms are biological constraints that we cannot control, yet have an influence for example, on when an infant will reach sufficiently.

Overall, there are sociological factors and genetic factors that influence motor development. Nutrition and exercise also determine strength and therefore the ease and accuracy with which a body part can be moved. This is significant in motor development because the hind portion of the frontal lobe is known to control motor functions. This form of development is known as "Portional Development" and explains why motor functions develop relatively quickly during typical childhood development, while logic, which is controlled by the middle and front portions of the frontal lobe, usually will not develop until late childhood and early adolescence.

Skilled voluntary movements such as passing objects from hand to hand develop as a result of practice and learning. This promotes participation and active learning in children, which according to Piaget's theory of cognitive development is extremely important in early childhood rule. Typical individual differences in motor ability are common and depend in part on the child's weight and build.

Infants with smaller, slimmer, and more maturely proportionated infants tended to belly crawl and crawl earlier than the infants with larger builds. Infants with more motor experience have been shown to belly crawl and crawl sooner. Not all infants go through the stages of belly crawling. However, those who skip the stage of belly crawling are not as proficient in their ability to crawl on their hands and knees.

Atypical motor development such as persistent primitive reflexis beyond 4—6 months or delayed walking may be an indication of developmental delays or conditions such as autism , cerebral palsy , or down syndrome. Children with Down syndrome or Developmental coordination disorder are late to reach major motor skills milestones. A few examples of these milestones are sucking, grasping, rolling, sitting up and walking, talking. Children with Down syndrome sometimes have heart problems, frequent ear infections , hypotonia , or undeveloped muscle mass.

This syndrome is caused by atypical chromosomal development. Along with Down syndrome, children can also be diagnosed with a learning disability. Learning Disabilities include disabilities in any of the areas related to language, reading, and mathematics. Basic reading skills is the most common learning disability in children, which, like other disabilities, focuses on the difference between a child's academic achievement and his or her apparent capacity to learn. Regardless of the culture a baby is born into, they are born with a few core domains of knowledge.

These principals allow him or her to make sense of their environment and learn upon previous experience by using motor skills such as grasping or crawling. There are some population differences in motor development, with girls showing some advantages in small muscle usage, including articulation of sounds with lips and tongue. Cognitive development is primarily concerned with ways in which young children acquire, develop, and use internal mental capabilities such as problem solving , memory , and language.

The capacity to learn , remember , and symbolise information , and to solve problems , exists at a simple level in young infants, who can perform cognitive tasks such as discriminating animate and inanimate beings or recognizing small numbers of objects. Cognitive development has genetic and other biological mechanisms, as is seen in the many genetic causes of intellectual disability. The ability to learn temporal patterns in sequenced actions was investigated in elementary-school age children. Temporal learning depends upon a process of integrating timing patterns with action sequences.

Children ages 6—13 and young adults performed a serial response time task in which a response and a timing sequence were presented repeatedly in a phase-matched manner, allowing for integrative learning. The degree of integrative learning was measured as the slowing in performance that resulted when phase-shifting the sequences. Learning was similar for the children and adults on average but increased with age for the children. Finally, WCST performance and response speed predicted temporal learning.

Taken together, the results indicate that temporal learning continues to develop in pre-adolescents and that maturing executive function or processing speed may play an important role in acquiring temporal patterns in sequenced actions and the development of this ability. There are typical individual differences in the ages at which specific cognitive abilities are achieved, [ citation needed ] but schooling for children in industrialized countries is based on the assumption that these differences are not large. There are few population differences in cognitive development. Newborn infants do not seem to experience fear or have preferences for contact with any specific people.

In the first few months they only experience happiness, sadness, and anger. Separation anxiety is a typical stage of development to an extent. Kicking, screaming, and throwing temper tantrums are perfectly typical symptoms for separation anxiety. Depending on the level of intensity, one may determine whether or not a child has separation anxiety disorder. This is when a child constantly refuses to separate from the parent, but in an intense manner.

This can be given special treatment but the parent usually cannot do anything about the situation. The capacity for empathy and the understanding of social rules begin in the preschool period and continue to develop into adulthood. Some aspects of social-emotional development, [ citation needed ] like empathy, [ citation needed ] develop gradually, but others, like fearfulness, [ citation needed ] seem to involve a rather sudden reorganization of the child's experience of emotion.

Genetic factors appear to regulate some social-emotional developments that occur at predictable ages, such as fearfulness, and attachment to familiar people. Experience plays a role in determining which people are familiar, which social rules are obeyed, and how anger is expressed. Parenting practices have been shown to predict children's emotional intelligence. The objective is to study the time mothers and children spent together in joint activity, the types of activities that they develop when they are together, and the relation that those activities have with the children's trait emotional intelligence.

Correlations between time variables and trait emotional intelligence dimensions were computed using Pearson's Product-Moment Correlation Coefficient. Partial correlations between the same variables controlling for responsive parenting were also computed. The amount of time mothers spent with their children and the quality of their interactions are important in terms of children's trait emotional intelligence, not only because those times of joint activity reflect a more positive parenting, but because they are likely to promote modeling, reinforcement, shared attention, and social cooperation.

Population differences may occur in older children, if, for example, they have learned that it is appropriate for boys to express emotion or behave differently from girls, [ citation needed ] or if customs learned by children of one ethnic group are different from those learned in another. Gender identity is how a person perceives themselves as male, female, or a variation of the two.

Studies have found that children can identify themselves as belonging to a certain gender as early as two years old, [57] but how gender identity is developed is a current topic of scientific debate. It is believed that several factors work in conjunction with one another to produce an individual's gender, including: Some believe that gender is malleable until late childhood, [58] while others argue that gender is established early and gender-typed socialization patterns either reinforce or soften the individual's notion of gender. Evidence suggests that neonatal androgens, male sex hormones produced in the womb during gestation, play an important role.

Testosterone in the womb directly codes the brain for either male or female-typical development. This includes both the physical structure of the brain and the characteristics the person expresses because of it. Persons exposed to high levels of testosterone during gestation typically develop a male gender identity while those who are not or those who do not possess the receptors necessary to interact with these hormones typically develop a female gender identity. It is well documented that children actively seek out information on how to properly interact with others based on their gender, [59] but the extent to which these role models, which can include parents, friends, and TV characters, influence gender identity is less clear and no consensus has been reached in the scientific field.

Language serves the purpose of communication to express oneself through a systematic and traditional use of sounds, signs, or written symbols. They include phonology, lexicon, morphology and syntax, and pragmatics. Children's development of language also includes semantics which is the attachment of meaning to words. This happens in three stages. First, each word means an entire sentence.

This stage occurs around age two or three.

Infancy and Toddlerhood

Baby Registry Baby Registry Finder. The damaged brain of iodine deficiency. Further challenges arise, however. Effect of duration of exposure". Children's reasoning is very rule based.

Third, around age seven or eight, words have adult-like definitions and their meanings are more complete. A child learns the syntax of their language when they are able to join words together into sentences and understand multiple-word sentences said by other people. There appear to be six major stages in which a child's acquisition of syntax develops. This stage usually occurs between 12 and 18 months of age. Second, between 18 months to two years, there is the modification stage where children communicate relationships by modifying a topic word.

The third stage, between two and three years old, involves the child using complete subject-predicate structures to communicate relationships. Fourth, children make changes on basic sentence structure that enables them to communicate more complex relationships. This stage occurs between the ages of two and a half years to four years. The fifth stage of categorization involves children aged three and a half to seven years refining their sentences with more purposeful word choice that reflects their complex system of categorizing word types. Finally, children use structures of language that involve more complicate syntactic relationships between the ages of five years old to ten years old.

Infants begin with cooing and soft vowel sounds. Shortly after birth, this system is developed as the infants begin to understand that their noises, or non-verbal communication, lead to a response from their caregiver. Eventually, they are able to add pronouns to words and combine them to form short sentences. By age 1, the child is able to say 1—2 words, responds to its name, imitates familiar sounds and can follow simple instructions. This skill develops close to their second birthdays. Vocabulary typically grows from about 20 words at 18 months to around words at 21 months.

Children's recorded monologues give insight into the development of the process of organizing information into meaningful units. By three years the child begins to use complex sentences, including relative clauses, although still perfecting various linguistic systems.

Physical development in adolescence - Behavior - MCAT - Khan Academy

For this, the child needs to learn to combine his perspective with that of others and with outside events and learn to use linguistic indicators to show he is doing this. They also learn to adjust their language depending on to whom they are speaking. Although the role of adult discourse is important in facilitating the child's learning, there is considerable disagreement among theorists about the extent to which children's early meanings and expressive words arise. Findings about the initial mapping of new words, the ability to decontextualize words, and refine meaning of words are diverse.

In this model, parental input has a critical role but the children ultimately rely on cognitive processing to establish subsequent use of words. There is no single accepted theory of language acquisition. Instead, there are current theories that help to explain theories of language, theories of cognition, and theories of development. They include the generativist theory, social interactionist theory , usage-based theory Tomasello , connectionist theory, and behaviorist theory Skinner.

Generativist theories refer to Universal Grammar being innate where language experience activates innate knowledge. This theory states that children acquire language because they want to communicate with others; this theory is heavily based on social-cognitive abilities that drive the language acquisition process. Communication can be defined as the exchange and negotiation of information between two or more individuals through verbal and nonverbal symbols, oral and written or visual modes, and the production and comprehension processes of communication.

All questions in a conversation should be answered, comments should be understood or acknowledged and any form of direction should, in theory, be followed. In the case of young, undeveloped children, these conversations are expected to be basic or redundant. The role of a guardians during developing stages is to convey that conversation is meant to have a purpose, as well as teaching them to recognize the other speaker's emotions. These four components of communication competence include: Language development is viewed as a motive to communication, and the communicative function of language in-turn provides the motive for language development.

As they begin to acquire more language, body movements take on a different role and begin to complement the verbal message. This developmental change is the change from primary intersubjectivity capacity to share oneself with others to secondary intersubjectivity capacity to share one's experience , which changes the infant from an unsociable to socially engaging creature. This gesture includes communicative pointing where an infant points to request something, or to point to provide information. The use of non-verbal communication in the form of gestures indicate the child's interest in communication development, and the meanings they choose to convey that are soon revealed through the verbalization of language.

Language acquisition and development contribute to the verbal form of communication. Children originate with a linguistic system where words they learn, are the words used for functional meaning. According to this, children view words as a means of social construction, and that words are used to connect the understanding of communicative intentions of the speaker who speaks a new word.

Early Childhood (Birth to Eight Years)

Another function of communication through language is pragmatic development. Mechanics of verbal interaction include taking turns, initiating topics, repairing miscommunication, and responding to lengthen or sustain dialogue. In accordance to the child's developing conversational skills, asymmetrical conversation between adult and child modulate to an equal temperament of conversation. This shift in balance of conversation suggests a narrative discourse development in communication.

Delays in language is the most frequent type of developmental delay. According to demographics 1 out of 5 children will learn to talk or use words later than other children their age. Some children will also display behavioral problems due to their frustration of not being able to express what they want or need. Simple speech delays are usually temporary.

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Most cases are solved on their own or with a little extra attribution from the family. It's the parent's duty to encourage their baby to talk to them with gestures or sounds and for them to spend a great amount of time playing with, reading to, and communicating with their baby. In certain circumstances, parents will have to seek professional help, such as a speech therapist. It is important to take into considerations that sometimes delays can be a warning sign of more serious conditions that could include auditory processing disorders , hearing loss , developmental verbal dyspraxia , developmental delay in other areas, or even an autism spectrum disorder ASD.

There are many environmental causes that are linked to language delays and they include situations such as, the child is having their full attention on other skills, such as walking perfectly, rather than on language. The child may have a twin or a sibling in which their age are relatively close, and may not be receiving the parent's full attention. Another circumstance could be a child that is in a daycare that provides few adults to be able to administer individual attention. Perhaps the most obvious component would be a child that suffers from psychosocial deprivation such as poverty, malnutrition, poor housing, neglect, inadequate linguistic stimulation, or emotional stress.

Language delay can be caused by a substantial amount of underlying disorders, such as intellectual disability. Intellectual disability takes part for more than 50 percent of language delays. Language delay is usually more rigorous than other developmental delays in intellectually disabled children, and it is usually the first obvious symptom of intellectual disability. Intellectual disability accounts to global language delay, including delayed auditory comprehension and use of gestures.

Impaired hearing is one of the most common causes of language delay. A child who can not hear or process speech in a clear and consistent manner will have a language delay. Even the most minimum hearing impairment or auditory processing deficit can considerably affect language development. Essentially, the more the severe the impairment, the more serious the language delay.

Nevertheless, deaf children that are born to families who use sign language develop infant babble and use a fully expressive sign language at the same pace as hearing children. Developmental Dyslexia is a developmental reading disorder that occurs when the brain does not properly recognize and process the graphic symbols chosen by society to represent the sounds of speech.

Children with dyslexia may encounter problems in rhyming and separating sounds that compose words. These abilities are essential in learning to read. Early reading skills rely heavily on word recognition. When using an alphabet writing system this involves in having the ability to separate out the sounds in words and be able to match them with letter and groups of letters. Because they have trouble in connecting sounds of language to the letter of words, this may result difficulty in understanding sentences.

They have confusion in mistaking letters such as "b" and "d". For the most part, symptoms of dyslexia may include, difficulty in determining the meaning of a simple sentence, learning to recognize written words, and difficulty in rhyming. Autism and speech delay are usually correlated. Problems with verbal language are the most common signs seen in autism. Early diagnosis and treatment of autism can significantly help the child improve their speech skills.

Autism is recognized as one of the five pervasive developmental disorders, distinguished by problems with language, speech, communication and social skills that present in early childhood. Some common autistic syndromes are the following, being limited to no verbal speech, echolalia or repeating words out of context, problems responding to verbal instruction and may ignore others who speak directly. Malnutrition, maternal depression and maternal substance abuse are three of these factors which have received particular attention by researchers, however, many more factors have been considered. Although there are a large number of studies contemplating the effect of maternal depression and postnatal depression of various areas of infant development, they are yet to come to a consensus regarding the true effects.

There are numerous studies indicating impaired development, and equally, there are many proclaiming no effect of depression on development. However, the authors conclude that it may be that short term depression has no effect, where as long term depression could cause more serious problems.

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A further longitudinal study spanning 7 years again indicate no effect of maternal depression on cognitive development as a whole, however it found a gender difference in that boys are more susceptible to cognitive developmental issues when their mothers suffer depression. Infants with chronically depressed mothers showed significantly lower scores on the motor and mental scales within the Bayley Scales of Infant Development, [89] contrasting with many older studies.

For example, at age five a child may expect others to share their possessions freely but still be extremely possessive of a favorite toy. This creates no conflict of conscience, because fairness is determined relative to the child's own interests. Between ages five and eight, children enter into a broader peer context and develop enduring friendships.

Social comparison is heightened at this time, and taking other people's perspective begins to play a role in how children relate to people, including peers. Implications for in-school learning. The time from birth to eight years is a critical period in the development of many foundational skills in all areas of development. Increased awareness of, and ability to detect, developmental delays in very young children has led to the creation of early intervention services that can reduce the need for special education placements when children reach school age. For example, earlier detection of hearing deficits sometimes leads to correction of problems before serious language impairments occur.

Also, developmental delays caused by premature birth can be addressed through appropriate therapies to help children function at the level of their typically developing peers before they begin school. An increased emphasis on early learning has also created pressure to prepare young children to enter school with as many prerequisite skills as possible. In federal legislation was passed in the United States creating Goals , the first of which states that "All children will enter school ready to learn" U. Department of Education, While the validity of this goal has been debated, the consequences have already been felt.

One consequence is the use of standardized readiness assessments to determine class placement or retention in kindergarten.

Another is the creation of transition classes an extra year of schooling before either kindergarten or first grade. Finally, the increased attention on early childhood has led to renewed interest in preschool programs as a means to narrow the readiness gap between children whose families can provide quality early learning environments for them and those whose families cannot.

Historically, middle childhood has not been considered an important stage in human development. Sigmund Freud's psychoanalytic theory labeled this period of life the latency stage, a time when sexual and aggressive urges are repressed. Freud suggested that no significant contributions to personality development were made during this period. However, more recent theorists have recognized the importance of middle childhood for the development of cognitive skills, personality, motivation, and inter-personal relationships. During middle childhood children learn the values of their societies.

Thus, the primary developmental task of middle childhood could be called integration, both in terms of development within the individual and of the individual within the social context. Perhaps supporting the image of middle childhood as a latency stage, physical development during middle childhood is less dramatic than in early childhood or adolescence.

Growth is slow and steady until the onset of puberty, when individuals begin to develop at a much quicker pace. The age at which individuals enter puberty varies, but there is evidence of a secular trend—the age at which puberty begins has been decreasing over time. In some individuals, puberty may start as early as age eight or nine.

Onset of puberty differs across gender and begins earlier in females. As with physical development, the cognitive development of middle childhood is slow and steady. Children in this stage are building upon skills gained in early childhood and preparing for the next phase of their cognitive development. Children's reasoning is very rule based. Children are learning skills such as classification and forming hypotheses. While they are cognitively more mature now than a few years ago, children in this stage still require concrete, hands-on learning activities.

Middle childhood is a time when children can gain enthusiasm for learning and work, for achievement can become a motivating factor as children work toward building competence and self-esteem. Middle childhood is also a time when children develop competence in interpersonal and social relationships.

Children have a growing peer orientation, yet they are strongly influenced by their family.

Preschool Years

developmental milestones for children birth through adolescence, and information about the possible effects of cell development. mo: coos, curious. From infancy to adolescence, children grow physically, mentally and socially into enabling children to develop from simple understandings at birth to complex.

The social skills learned through peer and family relationships, and children's increasing ability to participate in meaningful interpersonal communication, provide a necessary foundation for the challenges of adolescence. Best friends are important at this age, and the skills gained in these relationships may provide the building blocks for healthy adult relationships.

For many children, middle childhood is a joyful time of increased independence, broader friendships, and developing interests, such as sports, art, or music. However, a widely recognized shift in school performance begins for many children in third or fourth grade age eight or nine. The skills required for academic success become more complex. Those students who successfully meet the academic challenges during this period go on to do well, while those who fail to build the necessary skills may fall further behind in later grades.

Recent social trends, including the increased prevalence of school violence, eating disorders, drug use, and depression, affect many upper elementary school students. Thus, there is more pressure on schools to recognize problems in eight-to eleven-year-olds, and to teach children the social and life skills that will help them continue to develop into healthy adolescents. Adolescence can be defined in a variety of ways: For the purpose of this discussion adolescence is defined as a culturally constructed period that generally begins as individuals reach sexual maturity and ends when the individual has established an identity as an adult within his or her social context.

In many cultures adolescence may not exist, or may be very short, because the attainment of sexual maturity coincides with entry into the adult world. In the current culture of the United States, however, adolescence may last well into the early twenties. The primary developmental task of adolescence is identity formation. The adolescent years are another period of accelerated growth. Individuals can grow up to four inches and gain eight to ten pounds per year.

This growth spurt is most often characterized by two years of fast growth, followed by three or more years of slow, steady growth. By the end of adolescence, individuals may gain a total of seven to nine inches in height and as much as forty or fifty pounds in weight. The timing of this growth spurt is not highly predictable; it varies across both individuals and gender. In general, females begin to develop earlier than do males.

Sexual maturation is one of the most significant developments during this time. Like physical development, there is significant variability in the age at which individuals attain sexual maturity. Females tend to mature at about age thirteen, and males at about fifteen. Development during this period is governed by the pituitary gland through the release of the hormones testosterone males and estrogen females.

Child development

There has been increasing evidence of a trend toward earlier sexual development in developed countries—the average age at which females reach menarche dropped three to four months every ten years between and Adolescence is an important period for cognitive development as well, as it marks a transition in the way in which individuals think and reason about problems and ideas. In early adolescence, individuals can classify and order objects, reverse processes, think logically about concrete objects, and consider more than one perspective at a time.

However, at this level of development, adolescents benefit more from direct experiences than from abstract ideas and principles. As adolescents develop more complex cognitive skills, they gain the ability to solve more abstract and hypothetical problems. Elements of this type of thinking may include an increased ability to think in hypothetical ways about abstract ideas, the ability to generate and test hypotheses systematically, the ability to think and plan about the future, and meta-cognition the ability to reflect on one's thoughts. As individuals enter adolescence, they are confronted by a diverse number of changes all at one time.

Mentally, children become conscious of their own thoughts and understand what others around them think. Feldman explains other important cognitive milestones are computing simple math problems and learning how to use grammatical rules in speech. During this period, your child also develops awareness of maleness and femaleness, which is greatly influenced by parental guidance and social media, like television and children's books. For many children, the elementary school years are a time of academic achievement, involvement in sports, development of musical talent, and awareness of individual personality traits.

Mentally, children can comprehend rules in games and think ahead to figure things out. In middle childhood, the N. You are also sure to notice your son's voice deepening or that your daughter is shaving her legs. Feldman points out that these are outer signs of inner sexual organs maturing. Teenagers advance in their reasoning and debating skills, often trying them out on their parents. While teens are the size of an adult and have the capability to talk like one, Feldman reminds parents that adolescents are subject to egocentric thinking, or to put it another way, they believe that they are bulletproof.