Essay - Child Development Introduction the Beginning of the Theoretical and Practical...

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***** beginning of the theoretical and practical exploration ***** child development began in essence with the fairly recent recognition of children as developmentally unique and progressively different to adults. As one commentator notes, "Children were often viewed simply as small versions of ***** and little attention was paid to the many advances ***** cognitive abilities, language usage, and physical growth." (Van Wagner)

Intense interest in the field of child development really began ***** the early Twentieth Century. However, the tendency in earlier psychological *****ory, especially with regard to the theories of Sigmund Freud, ***** to focus on child development from the perspective of abnormal ********** issues. This stance has s*****ce been adjusted and ameliorated by many contemporary *****orists, such as Piaget and Eriksson.

While previous assessments ***** the infant or young child tended to emphasize the qualities of dependency, inadequacy and passivity, "... "...Recent observations of the ***** have impressed psychologists with his alertness to the environment ***** ***** ability ***** adapt" (McKeachie and Doyle 460). In other words, psychologists realized that the child is not a "... passive recipient of environmental influences" but that development is in fact an active and inter***** process" (***** and Doyle 460).

*****. Stages ***** development

Theoretical concerns with ***** to child and adolescent development ***** tended ***** emphasize the various stages of growth ***** development - which includes both cognitive, psychological and ***** aspects. One ***** the most famous of the experts in this field is Jean Piaget. Piaget focused on ***** development and stated that there are a number of central developmental cognitive stages. The four developmental stages ***** Piaget identified were firstly the Sensorimotor stage, which takes place between birth and two years of age. ***** stage is characterized ***** the ***** ***** self as an agent of actions, such as shaking a rattle to make a no*****e. (Piaget)

***** Preoperational stage between the ages of two ********** seven is ***** ***** at which the child learns to use language and ***** represent objects by images and *****. At this stage thinking and thought processing is still very egocentric and the child ***** less aw***** of the perspective ***** viewpoints of others. (Piaget) This is a stage when the child is, "... not yet able to conceptualize abstractly and needs concrete physical situations." (Piaget: funderstnading) The Concrete Operations stage put forward by Piaget takes ***** between seven and eleven years of age and is characterized by conceptualization and logical analysis and categorization of the world around him or her. The Formal Operations st***** is ***** the individual can "...Can think logically about abstract propositions and test hypo*****ses systematically."


While these stages represent cogent insights into child development they have also been criticized for being too rigid and not allowing for a more flexible view of the w*****y that children develop cognition, as well as the way that they develop concrete operations, often at a much earlier age than Piaget suggests.

Another view of child *****ment, which is


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