Childhood Development

Childhood development is a continuous process. Children gradually develop more complex skills on the simpler ones. Childhood development empowers children for effective independent survival as adults.

As the age progresses, physical and neurological maturation pushes children to attain motor skills and speech development.

The growing capability initiates in them the desire for independence and autonomy. This is easily noticeable as behavior changes and development of new relationships at different stages of childhood.

The challenges of the outside world lay the foundation of psychosocial development in children.

Children are active learners. They continuously perceive information and store it in their memory. Memories are retrieved and then used to solve problems; the basis of cognitive development.

Concept of neuronal plasticity

Neuronal plasticity is crucial for learning and remembering and therefore it is also crucial for cognitive and language development .

Plasticity of neurons enables the central nervous system to reorganize neuronal networks in response to environment’s positive and negative stimulation.

Neurons are produced in abundance during the third trimester and early infancy, creating a neurons bank. At birth, the brain is believed to comprise of 100 billion neurons, and each neuron develops about 15,000 synapses by 3 years of age. To read more on normal growth pattern of brain click here

Adaptive mechanism of brain involved in childhood development

  • In face of injury or learning
    The body draws upon the reservoir of neurons bank.

  • The neuronal pruning
    This implies preservation of synapses that are in frequently used pathways and atrophy of those that are less-used.
    However, the number of synapses stays almost constant throughout the first 10 years of life, but the number of neurons declines.

  • The strength of neuron synapses
    This increases or decreases as a direct effect of childhood experiences that influence the synaptic activity.

  • The neuronal circuits get reorganized
    Depending on children’s individualised environmental experiences the demand on various synaptic pathways of nerves are recognized.
    Consequently, individually preferred neuronal circuits are preserved; according to the need the existing ones conserved and modified, and new ones are created.

Impact of neuronal plasticity and childhood experiences on development

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Childhood stages of development

Expected age specific normal development has broad limits
Going through childhood is hard work, but play makes it look like all fun. Each child differs in his inherited potential and exposure to stimulation .

Childhood development is a chain of four developmental stages that a child goes through to get to adulthood.

We adults often fail to appreciate the demands each stage of development imposes on children. Moreover, there may often be lacunae in the knowledge of what is "normal" during the various stages of childhood development.

Understanding teenagers is often difficult, but it is noted that children from loving and supportive families grow up to be confident adults.

Stages of development during childhood are thus charted as milestones, which are divided into three developmental domains.

Related pages of interest: Also browse the right column

Cerebral Palsy

Stuttering & Developmental Dysfluency

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Childhood Development

Neuronal plasticity

Development Stages

Developmental Domains

Physical Domain

Cognitive Domain

Language Development

Social and Emotional 

Early Development
conception - 2 years of age

Prenatal

Neonatal Period

Infancy and toddlerhood

Early Childhood Development,
2-6 years of age

Infant Attachment

Child of Rage

Middle Childhood Development

Logical thinking

Intelligence development

Information processing

Attention span

Memory strategies

Communication capabilities

Teens Developmental Stages

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Motor Skills Development

Motor skills development process

Gross motor skills

Fine motor skills

Cognitive Development

Influencing Factors

Nativism versus empiricism

Types of Intellectual structure

Stages of cognitive development

Milestones of cognitive development

Cognitive disorders

Language development

What is language development

Building communicative abilities

Language development pg.2

Components

Requirements

Receptive language

Expressive language

Milestones of language development

Patterns of learning language

Factors affecting language development

Developmental Milestones

Milestones charts

Causes of delay & deterioration

Stuttering

Speech Fluency

Components of Stuttering

Developmental Dysfluency

Causes of Exacerbation

Psychological Implications

Incidence

Treatment

Cerebral Palsy

Disability Benefits

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