The observation of the child’s growth in the first years of life is perhaps the most surprising and exciting phase of rearing children. Young children are unique and the first two years of life learning new skills with astonishing rapidity. Every day they learn new things, develop new behaviors and express themselves with new sounds and reactions. The most interesting aspect is that each child develops at a different pace. Although the model and general environment are constant, the differences are a source of surprises and fun. Normal development makes it possible to understand the different aspects of behavior. The children adopt behaviors sometimes disappointing, but part usually of normal development. The independence, the anxiety of separation and jealousy are recurring themes that form the basis of many developmental changes that have an impact on behavior. Most problematic behaviors considered are actually exaggerations of normal development and may be the product of the differences that characterize children in the acquisition of new skills. This awareness is essential to encourage children to face risks and challenges appropriate to their age, to enable them to explore and experiment. The support and encouragement to grow and expand horizons lead to self-confidence.
Birth to 4 months
Babies are able to progressively interact with their environment.
Although they have poor muscle control and manage to barely (or not at all) to lift the head, have an amazing ability to look at their surroundings, reacting to people, sounds, colors and shapes.
Infants staring straight look with pleasure people’s faces and sometimes interacting with bright, shiny objects in motion.
With them you must talk and play, making them entertained. The first few weeks are when you establish a bond with the family.
At six weeks, children are increasingly able to act and react in a more positive and lively manner to sounds, faces, actions and so on. Although newborn, the child assimilate all, just do not respond. Some make sounds and smile to the faces of others. At this age the look is no longer limited to a straight line. Children are able better to monitor the objects with bright colors and are also the first attempts to grasp things, but do not hold or are able to play there constantly. They feed with greater awareness and less passive in the position and needs.
Four months are sociable and react to each word with an interesting variety of expressions, sounds and movements. They emit sounds constantly, for example squeals, chirps and babbles, or because noise causes him pleasure or to receive an answer from someone. At this stage children respond to the majority of people willing to play, to crawl, to make verses or grimaces. The smile becomes more frequent. They improve muscle control and physical interaction with the environment: you look at your hands, try to grab things and are able to grab an object with a large rotational movement of the arms and hands. They become gradually able to stand upright by themselves when they are in the arms of someone or in a child seat. One of the most exciting events is when a child is able to change position alone often does not understand what has just happened and after having accomplished this amazing feat could begin to cry. Start to show the first signs that want to be kept up, although obviously can not do it without help. Most self-control makes children more actively to follow what is happening around them. Interest is aimed primarily at people.
From 6 to 12 months
Six months appear in continuous exploration of the surrounding environment. Eyes, fingers, hands and mouth are essential parts of this process. Everything is new and needs to be touched, looked, tasted and chewed. Things can now be grasped with greater skill and even passed from hand to hand. Children become more sociable, emit sounds for yourself or for someone who will respond. At this age the ability to sit become an important reference point and can be acquired suddenly. Children are constantly moving, but the possibility of crawling is limited by the inability to lift his belly from the floor.
Nine months after the interaction with the world it is becoming more complex. Body movements become more deliberate and are usually directed towards something that looks attractive. The upright position, in the presence of a support, is now acquired. Children strive to learn things, places and people, collect objects and touching everything. The index finger and thumb can now act together to tighten and the child’s world becomes so much bigger. For the child becomes an essential part. At least the pitch of “no” is included. The sounds become more significant and the words “father” and “mother”, as well as the sounds produced by imitation, they become part of the language. It becomes the dominant fear of strangers and parents are clearly favorite to anyone else. The seat position is now acquired; the children run or crawl on all fours with surprising mobility. Many, if they are able to easily move on all fours, renounce mostly crawl.
Twelve months walking is the great achievement, but for a few months the children will not walk well. It improved the grip of the fingers and the game has become more complex. They improved communication skills and are clearly understood single words, especially “mom” and “dad”. The child understands simple commands so that it becomes possible to impose limits; is more ready to react, waves his hand to greet and wants to do things alone. He is able to walk and find things; when he eats tries to hold the spoon. Mobility is key and becomes a component of the child’s desire to explore, even if your child always wants the security of a loved one next door. To help you grow you need to offer a safe space to explore.
From 18 months to 3 years
At eighteen months the child is an explorer whose world has expanded over the past few months. The ability to walk has opened new horizons and, coupled with the ability to crawl, allows him to get anywhere. It has become much more independent and more aware of what you really want. Detachment from parents is now more acceptable, but often seeks the gaze of parents for reassurance. The behavior sometimes becomes incoherent, children can show fear of some things, like the bathroom or loud noises. The word “no” becomes part of an enriched vocabulary, especially when a wish is not fulfilled. The vocabulary has been enriched by many new words and babble is constant. The words are limited and often one or more parts of the body are associated in normal play activities. Become more fun now play with friends, although the game is often conducted in parallel, with minimal interaction among peers. Children often feel frustrated if they can not do something and then it can be helpful to divert their attention. At this age, children are able to turn the pages yourself and love to draw and scribble. They are also able to partially undress.
Two years after the independence is the main feature of the 2 year old trying to acquire new abilities and skills and want to do everything himself and in his way. He also wants to make choices that are in some cases be his permitted (for example, the choice of clothes to wear, but no time to eat or sleep). At this age the child attaches great value to the word “no” in all types of communication. This profound sense of independence yields periodically to step needs to be supported, praised and supported. Of course children are now able to go around with incredible abilities also using the tricycle, they kick the ball, go up the steps and jump over objects. Their vocabulary is increasingly complex, they understand sentences and associate the words. They give a name to the figures and identify the different parts of the body. The game in common and participation are still limited. A favorite activity is good stories as well as helping with the housework.
Three years after the children love to play with blocks of buildings and they also know how to put them on each other. Lanciano the ball from the bottom a short distance. They enjoy very much to copy drawings. Their conversations are much easier to understand and know how to describe the figures by associating different objects and describing the action in the story. They feel like buttoning clothes and are able to wash and dry hands; They can begin to brush their teeth on their own, but often they forget if they are not controlled. The game is more interactive. Sometimes they masturbate.
From 4 to 10 years
Four years after the jumps are one of the favorite activities and the sense of balance improved significantly. Children of this age are more and more people in their designs and even copy happily imitating the illustrations. The speeches are perfectly understandable. Words like “why”, “how” and “when” appear in all applications and are an important part of the learning process. Usually with a little ‘help they are able to dress themselves, and many are able to control the bladder and bowel function. The separation from parents is easier and play in groups.
Five to eight years the balance is possible and so is the game with the ball bouncing, through better hand-eye coordination and greater speed. The drawings that represent humans are more complex and include several parts of the body. Exploration activities are paramount and constant. It is expected more control of children on the surrounding environment and greater self-confidence. They are more frequent requests for participation in group activities, sports and entertainment. The language has a lot of importance and the children know the different parts of the body; vocabulary was further enriched and improved the ability to do the calculations. They are capable of dressing yourself.
It is towards the 10th year, then, that the boy acquires an identity of himself more stable in different situations. This leads to the real social and fruitful relations and marks the beginning of the next phase of development: puberty.
The female puberty occurs, on average, around 12-13 years and is influenced by heredity, state of health, the type of power supply and, in general, the socio-economic conditions of the environment in which the girl lives it is certainly to be attributed to the improvement of the living conditions of the population of the so-called “secular acceleration of puberty,” which is found today in Western countries.
The first sign of development is made, around 10 years, by the enlargement of nipples, and subsequently develop the breasts that progressively reach different shape and volume depending on the breed, the familiarity, the constitutional characteristics, the type of feed, dell ‘ sports activities of the child.
The appearance of the first menstruation (menarche) is the most significant moment of reaching female maturity and occurs about two years after the beginning of the development of the breasts. Remember that the first menstrual cycles often have irregularities in periods of emergence, in the amount of blood removed and the type of disturbances that accompany them. These irregularities often create considerable concern in adolescents and the physician should reassure the girl on the absolute normality of the first menstruation behavioral abnormalities.
During the pubertal period it occurs a significant growth statural: about 7cm the first year and the second 6 cm; growth ends after about four years of the start of puberty. It is easy to understand how all these changes that accompany the transformation of the girl into a woman in a relatively short period of 3-4 years should ultimately be reflected on the balance psychic girl. At this point you need a loving and reassuring presence by the family environment, in order to prevent the inevitable crises of insecurity and concern, that characterizes the puberty, it can be transformed into a real “crisis d ‘ identity “, with serious consequences on the psychological and physical girl.