As children grow, they go through different development stages. The brain changes at each phase. When these transformations take place is in part genetics, but their surroundings and relationships with individuals in their home and life can have a significant effect on how much they benefit from each period of development. When everyone involved in the child’s care understand what is happening at each stage, it will help them to provide appropriate support, activities, encouragement and structure.
Birth to 1 year
Physical development is really fast. They learn how to move, become mobile and can grasp and handle things. From birth, they begin learning. Before they can say any words they discover by listening to grown ups talking. Consistent routines enable babies to understand order and look forward to events. A variation of activities will encourage babies to pay attention to their surroundings and will inspire learning.
1 Year Old
Children of this age normally continue to be timid with people they don't know. Often they will have a favourite toy. They begin to develop an awareness of their individuality and will put things into their mouths less often. When an adult asks for a toy they will hand it to them and will begin cuddling teddy bears. They enjoy playing with toys that make a noise and will copy others. They have fun playing with pots, pans and bricks and enjoy looking at picture books.
2 years old
By this age, children are excited to learn new things. They will scream, cry or have tantrums. They want to take part in finger-rhymes, songs and conversations more and join in with role-play. Children will regularly play by themselves or will watch other children playing.
3 Years Old
Children of this age begin to make their own friends and can explain their own ideas. Their drawings now resemble real things. They maybe know two or three colours and will say “why?” a lot. They understand what ‘one’ is and what ‘lots’ are.
4 Years Old
By this age, a child’s language is improving and they ask lots of questions. They can sort things into groups, they will start to remember for example, that Christmas happened a few weeks ago. They can problem solve and add more detail to drawings. They can say songs and nursery rhymes with virtually no errors.
5 Years Old
At this age a child will recognise their name and try to write it. They enjoy riddles and jokes and understand tenses more. They love listening to stories and doing puzzles. They can play with other children or alone.
All parents want the best for their children. With so many parents working as well as raising a family. It is important that childminders have qualifications and the right knowledge and skills in order to help give children the optimum help at each of the child development stages. For example, Little Ones offers a course in Early Years Care Education which is suitable for Ofsted Registration on the Childcare Register and Early Years Register.