My knowledge of average child development will be illustrated by looking at Piaget’s theory of cognitive development, this will be linked into two of the observations that I have made whilst studying a 3 year 4 month old boy in a nursery setting for an hour at a time. This will be connected with legal policies and framework that show the importance of child development in relation to social work practice. It will then be noted how these observations on child development can help us to understand social work practice and make sure that practice is anti-oppressive and anti-discriminatory. The observations will also be used to show how anti-oppression and anti-discrimination have been carried out in a nursery setting. This is fundamental in understanding what average child development would be considered so that there can be awareness when a child is not developing ‘normally’.
Piaget studied cognitive development and saw it as how children adapt to the world to try and find meaning and to develop their understanding. He believed that it was the role of the adult to provide the child with a stimulating environment which allowed the children to manipulate objects and ideas. Piaget saw cognitive development as a set of stages that all children needed to go through and that they had to fully complete one stage before moving on to the next, these stages are; sensory motor, pre-operational, concrete operational and formal operational. “Although there have been criticisms of Piaget, the contribution that he has made to our understanding of children’s intellectual development is still significant. He suggested that children progress through a series of stages in their thinking, each of which corresponds to broad changes in the structure and logic of their intelligence” (Brigid, D et al 2010 p153) Piaget claims