March 14, 2011
Infancy and Early Childhood Development
Infancy and early childhood are referred to as those immature years of life and the stage at which most of a child’s development occurs. To strengthen the development of a child’s learning one must understand the physical and mental factors that affect a child’s development through observation and interaction. Development begins during the prenatal period on up to the early years and depends on the nutritional, medical, emotional, and intellectual support of parents, family members, caregivers, and teachers (Cherry, 2011). Parenting styles also play a role in what influences development as well as early childhood education programs.
During the prenatal period when a child’s development begins, thus being aware of many factors that can damage the fetus and the development of a healthy child. In the early years the development of physical growth is through constant change. A key component in a child’s development is based on good nutrition as well as motor milestones needed for a child to succeed. Piaget and many other theorists refer to stages of specific age that defines the milestones reached. However, every child is different and so are there developmental successes (Berger, 2008).
Infants develop skills based on their experiences in exploring the world around them. Physical play allows them to develop coordination as well as stronger muscles. Sensory skills are developed through taste, smell, touch, seeing, hearing, and from that perception is gained. Motor, sensory, and perceptual skills are supported by stimulation and a caring environment. Cognitive development occurs when a child becomes aware of physical sensations such as his or her mouth, hands, and feet. This is when an infant will explore and begin to understand what is around them (Berger, 2008).
It is through early childhood that physical and neuropsychological changes... [continues]
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