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Today specialists have no uniform version and the theory capable to give a comprehensive and indisputable idea of how there is a mental development of the child.
The children's psychology is the section of psychology investigating spiritual and mental development of children, patterns of the happening processes, studying the instinctive and any acts and features of development beginning with the birth of the child and before a maturity in 12-14 years.
Psychologists divide the childhood into the periods, the concept of the leading activity which is characterized by three main signs is the cornerstone of a periodization of mental development of children:
First, it has to be obligatory for smysloobrazuyushchy, bear semantic loading for the child, for example, things unclear and senseless earlier, get for the three-year-old child a certain sense only in the context of game. Therefore, game — it is the leading activity and means of a smysloobrazovaniye.
Secondly, the basic relations with peers and adults develop in the context of this activity.
And, thirdly, in connection with development of this leading activity the main new growths of age, that circle of abilities which allow to implement this activity, for example, the speech or other skills appear and develop.
The leading activity has crucial importance at each certain stage of children's mental development, at the same time other types of activity do not disappear. They can become not the main.
Stable periods and crises
Each child develops unevenly, passing rather quiet, stable periods which are replaced critical, crisis. During the stability periods the child accumulates quantitative changes. It occurs slowly and not really considerably for people around.
Critical periods or crises in psychological development of children are open in the empirical way, and, randomly. At first crisis of seven years, then three, then 13 years, and only then the first year and crisis of the birth was open.
During crises the child for short term quickly changes, the main lines of his personality change. It is possible to call these changes in children's psychology revolutionary, so they are prompt on a current and are considerable on sense and the importance of the made changes. Critical periods are characterized by the following features:
- age crises at children arise imperceptibly and it is very difficult to define the moments of their approach and termination. Borders between the periods are vague, in the middle of crisis the sharp aggravation is observed;
- during crisis the child difficult gives in to education, often clashes with people around, attentive parents feel his experience in spite of the fact that it is obstinate and uncompromising at this time. Progress at school, working capacity falls and, on the contrary, fatigue increases;
- externally seeming negative developmental character of crisis, occurs destructive work.
The child does not get but only loses from what got before. At this time adults should understand that emergence new in development, practically always means dying off of old. Having got accustomed attentively to an emotional condition of the child, it is possible even to observe in critical periods and constructive developments.
The sequence of any period is defined by alternation of the critical and stable periods.
Interaction of the child with the surrounding social environment is a source of its development. All the child studies to, the people surrounding it give him. At the same time in children's psychology it is necessary that training went with an advancing.
Age features of children
At each age of the child there are characteristics which should be considered.
Crisis of a neonatality (0-2 months)
It is the first crisis in the child's life, crisis symptoms at the child – loss of weight in the first days of life. At such age the child – the most social being, he is not able to satisfy the requirements and is completely dependent and, at the same time, is deprived of means of communication rather is not able to communicate. His life of the beginning becomes mother, individual, certain of an organism. In process of adaptation to people around, the child has a new growth in the form of a complex of the revival including reactions: motor excitement at the sight of the approaching familiar adults; use of crying for drawing attention to, i.e. communication attempts; smiles, keen "cooings" with mother.
The complex of revival serves as a peculiar border of a critical period of a neonatality. The term of its emergence serves as the main indicator of a normality of mental development of the child and appears earlier at those children whose mothers not only just satisfy needs of the child, but also communicate with it, talk, play.
Infantile age (2 months – 1 year)
At this age the leading type of activity is direct emotional communication with adults.
Development of children of the first year of life lays the foundation of its further forming as persons.
Dependence on them has still comprehensive character, all cognitive processes are implemented in the relations with mother.
By first year of life the child pronounces the first words, i.e. the structure of speech action arises. Any actions with pieces of world around accustom.
About one year the speech of the child – passive. He learned to understand intonation, often repeating turns, but itself is not able to speak yet. In children's psychology during this period all foundation of speech skills is laid, children try to come into contacts with adults by means of crying, cooings, babble, gestures, the first words.
After a year the active speech forms. The vocabulary of the kid by 1 year reaches 30, almost all of them have nature of actions, verbs: give, take, to drink, eat, sleep, etc.
At this time adults should talk to children accurately and clearly to transfer skills of the correct speech. Process of assimilation of language happens more successfully if parents show and call objects, tell fairy tales.
Subject activity of the child is connected with development of movements.
In sequence of development of movements there is the general pattern:
- a moving eye, the child learns to concentrate on a subject;
- the expressive movements — a revival complex;
- movement in space – the child consistently learns to turn over, raise the head, to sit down. Each movement opens for the child new borders of space.
- crawling – this stage some children is missed;
- the hvataniye, by 6 months this movement from accidental captures turns into purposeful;
- manipulation subject;
- index gesture, quite intelligent way to express desire.
As soon as the child starts walking, borders of the world available to it promptly extend. The child studies at adults and gradually begins to seize acts of man: purpose of a subject, ways of actions with this subject, technology of performance of these actions. In assimilation of these actions toys are of great importance.
At this age intellectual development is put, the feeling of attachment forms.
Crisis of the first year
Crises in psychological development of children of one year are connected with a contradiction between biological system and a verbal situation. The child is not able to manage the behavior, sleep disorders, appetite loss, gloom, sensitivity, tearfulness begin to be shown, Nevertheless, crisis is not considered acute.
Early childhood (1-3 years)
At this age lines of mental development of boys and girls are divided. Children have fuller self-identification, understanding of gender. There is a consciousness, claims on recognition from adults develop, desire to deserve a praise, a positive assessment.
There is a further development of the speech, by three years the lexicon reaches 1000 words.
There is a further intellectual development, there are first fears which can be aggravated with irritability of parents, anger and can promote emergence in the child of feeling of isolation. Also excessive guardianship from adults does not help. More effective is the way when adults teach the child to the address with the subject causing fear on bright examples.
At this age basic requirement is tactile contact, the child masters feelings.
Crisis of three years
Acute crisis, crisis symptoms at the child: negativism on proposals of adults, obstinacy, impersonal obstinacy, willfulness, a protest revolt against people around, despotism. The depreciation symptom, is shown that the child begins to call parents, to tease, swear.
The sense of crisis is that the child tries to learn to make the choice, ceases to need full guardianship of parents. Inertly current crisis speaks about a delay in development of will.
It is necessary to define some field of activity where he could act independently for the growing-up child, for example, in game it is possible to test the independence.
The preschool childhood (3-7lt)
At this age the child in game passes from a simple manipulation with objects to subject game – into the doctor, the seller, the astronaut. The children's psychology notes that at this stage role identification, division of roles begins to appear. Closer by 6-7 years games by rules appear. Games are of great importance in mental and emotional development of the child, help to cope with fears, learn to undertake the leading role, build up character of the child and his attitude towards reality.
New growths of preschool age are complexes of readiness for training at school:
- personal readiness;
- communicative readiness means that the child is able to interact with people around on norms and rules;
- cognitive readiness assumes a level of development of processes of knowledge: attention, imagination, thinking;
- technology equipment – that minimum of knowledge, skills which allows to be trained at school;
- level of emotional development, ability to manage situational emotions and feelings.
Crisis of 7 years
Crisis of seven years reminds crisis of one year, the child begins to impose requirements and claims for attention to the person, his behavior can become demonstrative, slightly elaborate or even comical. He is not able to dominate emotions still well. The most important that parents can show is a respect for the child. It is necessary to encourage it for independence, manifestation of an initiative and vice versa, not to punish too strictly for failures since it can lead to the fact that the lacking initiative and irresponsible personality will grow up.
Younger school age (7-13 years)
At this age primary activity of the child – training, and, training in general and training at school can not match. That process took place more successfully, training, has to be, it is similar to game. The children's psychology considers this period of development as the most important.
The main new growths at this age:
- the intellectual reflection – appears ability to remember information, to systematize it, to store in memory, to take and apply at the necessary moments;
- the personal reflection, extends number of the factors influencing a self-assessment, there is an idea of itself. Than the relations with parents are warmer, that the self-assessment is higher.
In intellectual development the period of the concretized cogitative operations begins. Gradually the egocentrism decreases, there is an ability to concentrate at once on several signs, ability to compare them, to monitor changes.
Development and behavior of the child are influenced the relations in a family, by style of behavior of adults, At authoritative behavior children develop less successfully, than at democratic, companionship.
Training of communication with peers, ability to adaptation, and from here, to collective cooperation continues. Game is still necessary, it begins to accept personal motives: prejudice, leadership – subordination, justice — injustice, devotion – treachery. In games the social component appears, children like to think out secret communities, passwords, codes, certain rituals. Rules of the game and cast help to acquire rules and norms of the adult world.
Emotional development more depends on the experience gained outdoors. Fictional fears of the early childhood are replaced by specific: fear of pricks, natural phenomena, alarm for character of the relations with peers, etc. Sometimes there is an unwillingness to go to school, at the same time the headache, vomiting, gripes in a stomach can develop. It is not necessary to take it for simulation, perhaps, it is fear of some conflict situation with teachers or peers. It is necessary to talk friendly to the child, to find out the reason of unwillingness to go to school, to try to resolve a situation and to motivate the child on good luck and successful development. Lack of democratic communication in a family can promote development of a depression in children of school age.
Crisis of 13 years
In children's psychology age crises at children of thirteen years are crises of social development. He very much reminds crisis of 3 years: "I am!". A contradiction between personal I and world around. It is characterized by falling of working capacity and progress at school, disharmony in an internal personal structure and is among acute crises.
Crisis symptoms at the child during this period:
- the negativism, the child is hostile to all world around, is aggressive, inclined to the conflicts and at the same time to self-isolation and loneliness, tests discontent to everything. Boys are subject to negativism more than girls;
- falling of productivity, ability and interest in study, delay of creative processes, and, even in those areas in which the child is gifted and earlier showed big interest. All set work is performed mechanically.
Crisis of this age is connected, generally with transition to a new stage of intellectual development – transition from visualization to deduction and understanding. The specific thinking is replaced by logical. It is visually shown in the constant requirement of proofs and criticism.
The teenager has an interest in abstract – to music, philosophical questions, etc. the World begins to be divided into objective reality and internal personal experiences. The foundation of outlook and the identity of the teenager are intensively laid.
Teenage period (13-16 years)
During this period there is a rapid growth, maturation, development of secondary sexual signs. The phase of biological maturing matches a phase of development of new interests and disappointment with former habits and interests.
At the same time skills and the developed mechanisms of behavior do not change. Arises, especially at boys, keen sexual interests as speak sex hormones begin "to play pranks". Process of painful parting with the childhood begins.
The leading activity during this period – intimate and personal communication with peers. There is a weakening of bonds with a family.
Main new growths:
- the concept "We" forms — there is a division into communities "the — strangers". Among teenagers division of territories, spheres of vital space begins.
- formation of reference groups. At the beginning of forming it is same-sex groups, over time they become mixed, further the company is divided into couples and consists of the interconnected couples. Opinions and values of group, practically always oppositional or even hostile to the adult world, become dominant for the teenager. Influence of adults is complicated owing to closeness of groups. Each member of group has no criticality to the general opinion or opinion of the leader, dissent is excluded. Exile from group is equated to full breakdown.
- emotional development is shown by feeling of a maturity. Somewhat it still false, non-objective. Actually, it is only a tendency to a maturity. It is shown in:
- emancipation – the requirement to independence.
- the new relation to the doctrine – aspiration to bigger self-education, and, absolute indifference to school estimates. Often there is a discrepancy of intelligence of the teenager and estimates in the diary.
- emergence of the romantic relations with representatives of other floor.
- change of appearance and manner to put on.
In the emotional plan the teenager experiences difficulties and experiences, feels unfortunate. There are typically teenage phobias: shyness, discontent with the appearance, uneasiness.
Games of the child were transformed to the imagination of the teenager and became more creative. It is expressed in the composition of verses or songs, maintaining diaries. Imaginations of children are turned in themselves, into the intimate sphere, and disappear from people around.
Pressing need in this age – understanding.
Parent errors of education of teenagers – emotional rejection (indifference to an inner world of the child), emotional indulgence (the child is considered exclusive, protect from the outside world), authoritative control (it is shown in numerous bans and excessive severity). Even more the indulging non-interference aggravates crisis of teenage age (absence or weakening of control when the child is provided to himself and it is completely independent in all decisions).
The teenage period differs from all stages of development of the child, all anomalies of personal development which arose and developed earlier are shown and expressed in behavioural (more often at boys) and emotional (at girls) frustration. At most of children of frustration passing independently, but some need the help of the psychologist.
Education of children demands big forces, patience and composure of adults. At the same time is the only opportunity to express the wisdom and depth of love to the child. Raising the children, it is necessary to remember that before us the personality, and grows up she such what we it brought up. In all questions try to get up on the child's position, then he will be easier to be understood.