Reflection Essay on Erik Erikson Psychosocial Stages: Stage Three

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As the toddler begins to age, their imagination starts to blossom. From the age of three to five, children use social interactions, mainly playing, to assert their power and control over their world. Playing role play games is very common during this time and children begin to add purpose to their play by playing mother and father roles. Initiative is taken by the child when they begin to start planning activities and facing challenges. This is easier to be achieved when being encouraged to explore and helped with when having to make decisions by their carer. However if the carer shows a discouraging attitude to the child, they begin to sometimes feel ashamed of themselves. The child may then begin to assume how others may feel about them or things they may do. This is where guilt begins to grow. This stage is where a child must learn and accept what is and is not allowed and that some of the things that are not allowed could result in a punishment. When children are given the opportunity to use their initiative, for example, by making up a game, greater feelings of security are introduced with their ability to lead others and their sense of initiative is boosted. A dismissive or over controlling attitude or criticism from a carer could cause the child to become under the impression that they are a nuisance to others, making them feel embarrassed and causing them to lack self initiative. During this stage, children tend to ask many questions as they exercise interest and become more curious about their world. If negative responses towards the child’s questions are shown from the parents or carer, then the child may begin to develop feelings of guilt for showing an interest. A healthy balance between initiative and guilt is needed and when this stage is completed successfully the child will begin to understand their purpose. My sister and I are a year
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