Jeffery Mc Leod
ECE 205 Introduction to Child Development
January 11, 2013
Growth and Development
Children of the same age will experience progression differently, their progression is based on a dynamic process termed growth and development, both often used interchangeable, these terms however have completely different meanings. Growth usually refers to a noticeable increase in the child’s actual size, for instance the child’s weight, height, or head circumference. Development is a broader term than growth the rate and level of development are closely related to physiological maturity of the nervous, muscular, and skeletal systems. For example at birth the neurons in a child’s brain begin to make critical connections, which will be used in adult functions, such as vision. This is considered development and not growth because there is no increase of size and can observed without an advanced instrument. Development is also a sequence of composed of predictable steps along a developmental pathway common to the majority of children. Development usually focuses on several major domains: physical, motor, perceptual, cognitive, social-emotional, and language. According to Novella J. Ruffin Ph.D., Assistant Professor and Extension Child Development Specialist, physical development refers to “physical changes in the body and involves changes in bone thickness, size, weight, gross motor, fine motor, vision, and perceptual development.” “Growth is rapid during the first two years of life. “The child’s size, shape, senses, and organs undergo change.” ‘As each physical change occurs, the child gains new abilities.” Motor development is holding their head up, sitting, pulling, rolling, eye-hand coordination, reaching or grasping. “The gross motor skills develop in a head to foot progression (Gesell, 1940), “Head control is the first movement that a baby achieves, and is necessary to attain other movement skills such as sitting,...