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I chose to do a child observation paper for child development that took place in the setting of my family member’s home in apple valley. My nephew was turning 3 years old on Sunday, January 13th 2019 and his parents threw him a small birthday party with close family and friends. I chose to do my observation on my nephew, the birthday boy. There were also children ages 1-7 years old and I thought it would be a great opportunity to observe my nephew as well as the other children, their environment and apply the knowledge I have learned so far on the development of children.
Piaget’s theory on cognitive development helps us understand how children’s interactions in their environment influences a child’s mental perception of the world. He focused on the development of children rather than their learning. Children construct an understanding of the world around them, then experience discrepancies between what they already know and what they discover in their environment. The cognitive skills I observed in my nephew was the ability to watch him think and act freely on his own. He was able to pronounce his first and last name, when I asked him to spell it, he paused as he started to think and correctly spelled out his name. He also knew his age and was able to count with his fingers. He showed some ability to read, the letters on the birthday banner, “Happy Birthday Vladi” and pointed to his name. He was also fully aware it was his birthday and was thrilled and excited but didn’t like being the center of attention. He was fully aware of objects by names and shapes. He also picked out the theme for his birthday party (a dinosaur theme) which shows his ability to think freely and begin to show his interests to those around him.
Language development is the process by which children come to understand, communicate and express their feelings during early childhood. It builds the foundation for later literacy like reading and writing. The basic language skills I observed in my nephew was him able to communicate well with adults and children. His vocabulary was about 3-4 words within a sentence, I was able to understand common words but had a hard time understanding others. He would sometimes mix words together like robots, falling, dream and meant,” He had a dream about robots and he was falling in his dream.” He was also able to ask questions, when he heard the adults talking or needed help. He scribbles on paper but cannot write. His language skills are quickly developing and he is able to communicate about feeling, thoughts and emotions.
Physical development are growth and skill developments in the brain, muscle and senses that allows children to use and control their bodies. Gross-motor skills allows us to use our larger muscle movements, like our arms, legs, and whole body. Fine motor skills allow us to use our smaller muscle movements that occur in the wrists, hands, fingers, feet and toes. The physical skills in my 3-year-old nephew were maturely developed which allowed him to walk, run, jump, hop, crawl, dance and climb (on his tree house). At this age they are so quick and their parents had to take turns looking after him making sure he didn’t hurt himself. His fine motor skills were also maturely developed and allowed him to use his fingers and hands to open his gifts, build blocks, play with toys, pick up objects and open doors. His toes and feet allowed him to control and have better upper body mobility. He was able to eat on his own but needed assistance from an adult. At this age his motor skills allow him to learn some independent but needs some assistance.
Now social development refers to how a child learns to interact with others and emotional development includes the child’s experience, expression, and management of emotions and the ability to establish positive and rewarding relationships with others. In my child observation I watched closely how my nephew socialized in his current environment. He seemed very comfortable and relaxed, maybe because he knew he was home. He was very curious about the faces he didn’t recognize, he felt shy and timid around them and would stay quiet and look for his parents or a familiar face. He socialized well with the children and men adults. When he played with the children he was very caring and sharing. He wouldn’t play much with the girls only two younger cousins that are around his age, he preferred the older kids 6-7 years old.
Now the emotional development I viewed he was comfortable with only family (mostly men). He became timid and scared with strangers and looked for his parents for comfort. He became insecure when his parents weren’t around but once he saw them he would run to them for comfort and reassurance. In this child observation paper, I have analyzed the different stages of a child development on the example of my 3-year-old nephew. I can conclude that she is well developed in regard to the stages of Piaget’s theory on cognitive development.
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