LIFESPAN DEVELOPMENT AND PERSONALITY
What makes a child a child? Perhaps it is their stature, or their innocence. Maybe it is their sense of wonder and awe at the large new world in which they exist. One of the most notable traits of a child is the rate of his/her development. Children make such rapid growth both physically and cognitively in their formative years. There are many factors that influence a child’s growth during this sensitive and vital developmental period. In this paper, the author will discuss a few of the influences that affect the development of a child in his/her “Middle Childhood” phase (ages 6-12 years). These factors include physical development and cognitive development (both of which directly come from hereditary and environmental influences), as well as some theoretical perspectives involving the development of both.
The first topic addressed will be the factors that affect the physical development of a child during his/her Middle Childhood stage. As aforementioned, there are both hereditary and environmental factors to this development. “Genes are the determinants of heredity, and each individual carries genes from the mother and the father. Genes are responsible for cognitive and mental processes as well as physical features, and they are passed down through generations.” (Cherry, K., n.d.) With that said, it is easy for one to understand just how much of an effect that heredity factors into physical development. Physically, the genes passed down by the child’s parents largely determine a child’s growth. These genes directly effect how tall the child is, their hair color, eye color, skin complexion, etc. During the ages of 6-12, a child is still growing at a steady rate physically. As their bodies begin to shape, the features inherited by their parents become more and more apparent.
While a child’s heredity plays a large part in their physical development, environment can be just as important....