Children are an important part of society. They represent the next generation. As a parent, it is a great joy to bring a child into the world, to complete your family. Part of the task of being a parent has everything to do with nurturing your child. Different things start to change in the body and mind of children as they grow up. Noting these changes is paramount to mark the growth and development of your child.
The growth and development of a human being is complex psychology. It involves physical changes as well as changes in the mind.
The different stages of childhood have been researched and explained by many theorists and researchers. Culturally and socially, people still have perspectives on what the stages of growth look like, or what they should look like.
Amidst tons of research, some stages have been generally agreed upon, including the following:
Early childhood is the very initial stage. It majors on the development of a child between 0-8 years old. In this stage, the primary growth and development are based on skill acquisition, mobility, and motion, as well as physical changes.
In this stage of development, your child’s body will change in size and shape. Bodily proportions are what indicate the difference between an infant and a toddler. The toddler then continues to grow older, and gain an adult-like appearance.
At this stage, you should consider a child development class for your child. This will help account for the skill development aspect of this stage. Some important skills to master in this stage include sitting upright, walking, potty-training, talking and communicating, scribbling, reading out letters, to mention a few.
Once your child grows past 8 years old, they enter into the middle childhood stage. This covers the age of up to around 12 years. Your child enters into preteen years. This is a stage where the sexual and aggressive urges of your body are repressed. It, therefore, marks an important stage for your child to develop interpersonal relationships and build their personality. The cognitive development of your child also grows in this stage which is why you must start looking into the mental health of your child. This is such a critical time for your child to figure out a way to integrate with the society around him and develop a strong personality for himself.
This is perhaps a stage of life that most parents dread. The age group between 13-18 years is a very critical one. psychologically, physiologically, and even mentally, your child is changing. Adolescents require a lot of intentional attention to cater to their emotional development needs.
Besides that, an adolescent has a sexual maturity that also demands attention. It is also a preparation for introduction into the world of adulthood. The sexual maturation period can take a toll on adolescents. It is why they require a form of stability to become the best versions of adults. In these years, their bodies also grow significantly, with additional physical changes. You can expect your adolescent child to grow between seven to nine inches within this period.
One crucial and defining factor about adolescence is that it is an identity-defining stage. It is a time of life when the mental health of your child becomes more of a priority than ever before. As the adolescent tries to figure out their place in society, they have to catch up with the hormonal changes that happen in their bodies.
The growth and development of this stage are spontaneous and very unpredictable. For one, gender differences play a big role in the result of the developmental changes. Other than that, the identity formation might stretch into the early twenties.
You cannot afford to miss out on any stages of your child’s growth and development. The different stages present new challenges in your parenting techniques. If anything, pay keen focus on the early childhood and adolescence stage, as these are very defining of the character your child adapts.