The Child Study Project: Relationship between Textbook Knowledge of Child Development and Real Children Northwestern State University

and the community that could foster optimal development as well as any potential problems that may lead to future difficulties for the child. Second. First. The actions of the child was documented and then summarized. The observation was based on a seven year old female. a one hour naturalistic observation was made with no interaction. five years.CHILD STUDY PROJECT Abstract 2 This paper compares textbook knowledge of Child Development with real life observation. a thirty minute informal observation was made. It looks at the biosocial. cognitive. . A prediction of the child’s development over the next year. and psychosocial development of the seven year old. and ten years is also included. This paper compares the findings of the real life observations to textbook knowledge to see if the child development follows the textbook teaching including that of Jean Piaget and Erik Erikson. Conservation testing and information from the parental interview was also used in this study. During this time direct interaction with the child took place. This prediction takes into consideration any strength’s in the child. the family.

While the parents have joint custody of the children. She was born on January 27. Her step-father graduated from Nicholls State University as an RN. 2004 and has a sister who is ten. Her father has also remarried and has a daughter from his second wife who is now about three years old. Her mother and father divorced when she was less than one year old.S. Military but now works for a national company that supplies products and services for oil and gas drilling operations. step-father. The newborn baby brother is his first child although he does accept Macie and her sister as his own children. She has remarried twice since the divorce and is now a stay at home mom with her newborn son. sister and baby brother. He is married for the first time. Catholic being raised in a mid-sized city in North Louisiana. I thought it would be interesting to observe the seven year old to see how she reacted to the newborn brother now being the center of attention. Her father is a high school graduate who is a truck driver for a “Hot Shot”/Transport company. Macie lives the majority of the time with her mother. The family economic status would fall in the middle income category. . a step-sister who is three and a step-brother who is only three weeks old. She decided college was not for her and headed to the work place as an apartment manager. Her mom is a high school graduate with some college education.CHILD STUDY PROJECT 3 The Child Study Project: Relationship between Textbook Knowledge of Child Development and Real Children This Child Study Project is based on a seven year old girl named Macie. She is a white. He served as an RN in the U.

I spent a few minutes saying hello and taking a quick peak at the baby.V. but finally went on about her business and the “observation” began. Talked: Opened Her Present Played: With the dog 7 minutes 5 minutes With her Godmother 3 minutes 4 minutes With her sister 7 minutes With the baby 5 minutes Observation Table 2 Action Asked mom for something Marched across the room in an “attention getting” manner Disobeyed her stepfather and mother Sat down next to someone abruptly and then got up Frequency 4 times 6 times 3 times 5 times With her mom 5 minutes With her Grandma 3 minutes With others 3 minutes 14 minutes 4 minutes 23% 7% With her doll 10 minutes In her room 8 minutes 25 minutes 5 minutes 42% 8% Total Time Percentage of time 12 minutes 20% . At first she was interrupting and asking questions. I have been to their house before so Macie was expecting me to spend time with her as I usually do. I explained that I had “homework” to do for CHILD STUDY PROJECT 4 an hour but as soon as I was finished I would play with just her. During the one hour period I made the following observations: Observation Table 1 Activity Played Alone: Watched T. on a Saturday morning.m.I arrived at the house around 10:00 a.

petite. their hand-eye coordination and balance are developing and it is considered the healthy years. We spent much of the thirty minutes playing outside and talking about gymnastics. She demonstrated her talent on the beam and was very enthusiastic over her accomplishments. She dresses herself every morning. Since she had just celebrated a birthday and Christmas.After the one hour observation I was thinking this seven year old was extremely jealous of this new addition and this outward behavior was surely to get attention. I learned that Macie is very much becoming independent. they have a change in their social context. and she bathes herself every night. In the interview with her mom. seven year old girl which is another characteristic of the School Years Development level. CHILD STUDY PROJECT 5 For the informal observation we started out playing in Macie’s room. . I noticed her gymnastics picture on the dresser and commented on what a great picture it was. Her Biosocial Development seemed right on target. At this level of Biosocial Development. but not skinny. she had plenty of new “stuff” to show me. Trying not to jump to conclusions I continued to the next phase of the project: the one on one time. She came alive with great excitement. She is a very healthy. the child is becoming independent. decides on her lunch and in most cases prepares it or at least helps. Macie’s skills on the balance beam prove her balance and coordination is definitely developing at this point. She took me outside to see her new balance beam her step father had made her for Christmas. She seemed to put a lot of emphasis on her new “Baby Alive” doll. According to our text book she falls under the “School Years” category which includes kids ages seven through eleven.

She was able to do reverse math such as 5 + 3 = 8 then 8 – 3 = 5. I was amazed at the mental math she was capable of. she responded. they become . She is very eager to learn and does homework daily without being asked. weight and numbers may remain the same despite changes in CHILD STUDY PROJECT 6 outward appearance.According to Jean Piaget. By doing the conservation test. Inferiority level. If the child is encouraged and praised for accomplishments. I asked Macie to pour one of the glasses of water into a third glass that was taller and skinnier than the other two. Seeing the results of the tests that were given I would say she is well within the parameters of the Cognitive Development level that she should be. according to Erik Erikson. is the Industry vs. When I told Macie we were going to take a couple of tests. they can perform logical operations. She was also able to read very well and told me the story of Goldilocks almost to perfection. Knowledge and intellectual skills develop as well as self confidence and they become more aware of themselves as individuals. This means they should be developing their complex skills such as reading and writing. The Biosocial Development level Macie should be at. “No. it is the same as what we just poured from the other glass”. reverse direction of thinking and understand the concept of permanence and conservation by learning volume. she was excited. We then moved on to simple addition and subtraction. During the interview with her mom I learned that Macie is at the top of her class. I learned just how smart this seven year old really is. This is the level they develop competence. six to eleven year old children should be in the Concrete Operational Stage of Cognitive Development. I filled two identical glasses with water to the half way mark. can sort items into categories. When asked if this glass now held more water.

The encouragement she receives from her teacher and parents is apparent in the effort she puts forth with her school work. According to Erikson. I actually thought the disobedience noted in Observation Table 2 was a sign of needing attention. she will continue to get the encouragement she needs to finish out the Industry versus Inferiority stage and move into the Identity versus Identity Confusion Stage. She is quite industrious. They may express their independence by being disobedient and rebellious. but if they are ridiculed they become inferior. So many physical and mental changes . Macie definitely shows many signs of being at this level. even if she does put on two different colored socks intentionally. Her intellectual skills were proven during the cognitive tests that we discussed previously. the adolescence years. loving home. Cognitive and Psychosocial Development stages performed on Macie. pretty easily. Her independence is shown in her wanting to dress herself. however. After compiling the research on the Biosocial. it may actually be a sign of independence and self confidence as described by Erikson. In looking to her future development. Being she is now living in a stable. it is comfortably assumed she will stay on track with their levels of development.industrious. Even over the next five years. In addition. it is clear she falls well within the parameters of all the textbook teachings. the alone time noted in Observation Table 1 is probably perfectly normal due to the transition from “play” to “industrious”. it would be easy to assume over the next year she will continue to develop along the stages taught by Piaget and Erikson’s Developmental Theory’s. Predicting ten years moves us into a whole new area of confusion. the move CHILD STUDY PROJECT 7 from “play” to “industrious” sometimes make them more isolated and pulled back. Peer groups and family are a major influence at this level.

golf. The child is the one whose life is disrupted during a holiday when she has to spend Christmas Eve at one house and Christmas Day at the other. Since I have no professional training my predictions are purely theoretical. She has more positive things directing her than she does negative. She is not only active in her church but she also enjoys going to church. These predictions are based purely off of personal observation and from what I have learned throughout this research. Overall.take place during the adolescent years. The only potential problem foreseen in this prediction is the fact that she is still technically being raised by divorced parents. All of this is positive strengths that will help foster optimal development over the next ten years. to me. would have a major impact on a child going into the teenage years who is trying to find herself. They are loving and nurturing parents. . my prediction is that Macie will continue to develop in all three areas of development on a normal level over the next one year. soccer. They encourage Macie to be independent yet still give her limits and control her actions. five years and ten years. girl scouts and CHILD STUDY PROJECT 8 most recently. which is important in the development of her social competence. During the parent interview it was mentioned Macie has a very structured routine on school days. Or during the summer. she has to stay two weeks at Mom’s house and then two weeks at Dad’s. No matter how loving and supportive each set of parents are it still puts a burden on the child. This. Her parents use what Diana Baumrind would call “authoritative parenting”. Her routine is disrupted each time she has to move to a different environment. But there are many strengths that will help Macie stay on track. She is involved in afterschool activities such as gymnastics.

In conclusion. the observations made of Macie were pretty close to where the textbook says she should be. Although no one would fit every description of every level of development. my observation leads me to believe that real life child development pretty much follows the textbook knowledge. Piaget and Erikson’s Developmental Theory’s are definitely visible in the real life development of this seven year old case study. .

from Child Development Institute - . T. Child Study Project. 2011. parenting: http://www. psychology.).). 2011. 2011. Retrieved February 8. (2011. ( (n. from Psychology Classroom at AllPsych Online: http://allpsych.html Gale. (2008).d. Erikson's Stages of Psychological Development. Educators. (n.). Retrieved February 4.html Erikson's Psychosocial Development in Psychology 101 at AllPsych Retrieved February 7. E.d. from Child Development Institute . 2011. J.d. and Enthusiasts: http://psychology.d. average. from Psychology .CHILD STUDY PROJECT 9 References Cherry. Cognitive Development Information on Healthline. Lalonde.about. Stages of Intellectual Development In Children and Teenagers (Child Development Institute). meaning. Description. L. from Medical Information for Healthy Living | Healthline: http://www.stages.shtml Stages of Social-Emotional Development In Children and Teenagers (Child Development Institute). (n.Complete Guide to Psychology for Students. 2011. (n. Essentials of Life-span Development.). Common Interviewer) Santrock. K. Retrieved February 2.).com/od/psychosocialtheories/a/psychosocial.Keeping Parents Informed on child development.healthline. Definition. from Encyclopedia of Children's Health: Infancy Through Adolescence: http://www.). Retrieved February 5. T. February 5). New York: McGraw Hill Higher Education.htm Cognitive Development . 2011. (n. Retrieved February 4. (n.d.

childdevelopmentinfo. . parenting: http://www.CHILD STUDY PROJECT 10 Keeping Parents Informed on child development.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful