Emotional and Social Development from age 1 to 3 SC Introduction Children experience negative emotions as well as rebellion, but also emotional periods such as happiness, calmness, stability and inner peace. These emotions go in cycles which can be observed in emotional stages that most children go through. Although, it is important to remember that each child is an individual. Emotional Development 18 months Children at this stage are primarily self-centered, which means they are only thinking about their own needs and wants. During infancy a child's needs are generally met by caregivers immediately, but during a child's eighteen months the care givers begin to teach the child that some needs can't be met as soon as desired. This is a difficult life lesson for the child to learn. Negativism or doing the opposite of what others want/ask is a normal response in a developing child in the toddler years. This is because of the child's desire for independence. • For example, a child might do the opposite of what someone tells her/him just by simply saying "Let me decide for myself sometimes." • Example, a child may even respond "no" to an activity they want to do, for the chance to take charge of a decision A toddler may also express frustration, this is normally caused because their body and vocabulary aren't developed enough to obey or express their wishes. Also a child is starting to realize that they are an individual, this excites and frightens them. Children like the power but also miss the close bond with their caregiver. Understanding that these emotions are normal for toddlers is very important in trying to cope with them. Many children around the age of 18 months begin to have temper tantrums, which can continue onto the ages of 3 or 4. • Temper tantrums – Incidents when children release anger by screaming, crying, kicking and sometimes even holding their breath. 2 Years A child's speech and motor skills have improved. The child also understands more and is able to wait for longer periods of time. Two year olds express love and affection freely and seek approval and praise. A child has fewer and less intense emotional outbursts. Also relationships with parents and other children have improved. Two year olds tend to be friendly, outgoing and less self-centered. 3 Years Most three year olds have made remarkable strides in emotional development at this stage. Three year olds are more physically able to do things, as they do not have to deal with as many frustrating situations. Three year olds take directions well from others. They are also more eager for praise and affection. They usually have fewer and less violent temper tantrums, and love to talk because they are better at it. Children at this age enjoy talking to imaginary companions, to themselves, and toys. They also respond to others talking and can be reasoned with and controlled with words. Social Development Specific Emotions Children express their emotions more freely until the age of two or three. As they mature they begin to be affected by the cultural demands for more control of emotional expression. Children's emotions are anger, fear, jealousy, affection and sympathy. Anger Outgoing confident children seem to display their anger aggressively (ex. hitting others). While shy passive toddlers are more likely to cry and seek attention from an adult. If these expressions of anger aren't met with the desires the children want, the children's reactions will begin to become less aggressive. Eventually physical attacks will be replaced by threatening, name-calling and pouting. Although frequency of a child's anger subsides as they become older, the intensity changes. The most destructive and disturbing for both parent and child are frequent outburst of anger. Parents should recognize and respond to the child's anxiety rather than their anger. When a child is about three years old, they being to think about "hitting back". • Common temporary causes of anger include: -Illness -Tired -Uncomfortable -Hunger • Factors that may results in a child displaying anger include: -Being anxious or insecure -Not possessing self-control - Fear • One to three year olds may be frightened of high places, strangers, and loud noises. They may also be afraid of the dark, animals and storms. Some fears are useful and can help keep toddlers out of dangerous situations. Some children have more fears than others, these factors include, physical condition, mental development, temperament, feeling of security and ability to cope with daily life. Jealousy • Jealousy becomes recognizable sometime in the second year. Jealousy reaches its peak in a child three years of age. Resentment of affection between parents is one of the most common causes of jealousy in early childhood. Sibling rivalry is competition between brothers and/or sisters for their parents affection and attention. Children between ages 18 months and three seem to be most jealous of a new baby. A child may try to hurt the baby or demand it be “taken back”. Some suggestions are: Arrange special alone time with our kid, complement the youngster on his or her appropriate behavior, give the older child extra love and attention. Sympathy • Most children don’t show sympathy until the age of two. To understand sympathy, a child must understand that a situation can be upsetting for someone else even though he or she does not feel upset. A three year old may pat or talk to an unhappy baby or push all his/her toys into the crib to try and make them feel better. Love & affection The relationships that children have with others in their early years are very important. The relationships they have later on in life are based on their experience with love and affection in their younger years. Children must learn to love at a young age through example and experience. The first love that forms is towards the person that meets all the baby's needs. The main caregiver will be preferred over all others. It is important that relationships between parents and children are strong but not smothering. If a child is too dependent on a parent it could create difficulty in forming new relationships with others. Gradually the child will start to develop affection towards others. Evaluating emotional adjustment Between 1-4 birthdays the most important clue that a child is developing well emotionally is the harmony of the child-parent relationship. The early pattern that is formed between a parent and child is never outgrown. It will significantly influence the child's relationships throughout life. • What are some signs of a healthy relationship? -Child seeks approval/praise from the parents. -Child looks for comfort/help with the parents. -Child expresses significant events with the parents in hopes to share joy and sorrow. -Child accepts limits and discipline without unusual resistance. General Social patterns Young children gradually learn to get along with other people in their own families and other groups. This is the beginning of socialization which is the process of learning to get along with others. Social development is related to emotional, intellectual and physical development. Individual differences may affect these patterns. 18 months The main goal for socialization for children at the age of eighteen months is developing independence from their family. For many children the strongest and closest relationships will always be with those who are in their family. At this stage toddlers must begin to learn about the world surrounding them. Planning trips to the park would be beneficial in learning about the outside world and being presented with opportunities to communicate with people other than family members. At this age children start to notice and play with other children, but the amount is very small. •Parallel play – Children playing independently beside others, but not actually interacting with each other. Children at eighteen months seem to treat others more like objects than as human beings. They are interested in satisfying their own desires without regard for anyone who interferes. 2 years At two years old, the child is good at understanding and interacting with the caregiver. The child is able to read caregivers moods. Speech is developing, which makes them able to communicate with others. Two year olds enjoy interacting and playing with other children. They like to please people but most children at this age cannot share or take turns. 2.5 years A child at the age of two and a half may willingly perform tasks for one person but refuse for someone else, this behavior is impossible to understand. The child is beginning to learn and understand the rights of others. Social play with other children works. 3 years • People are important to children at this age. Three year olds will share, help, or do things another persons way- just to please them. They begin to have cooperative play, (actually playing with another, interacting and cooperating.) They can also work together in small groups. At three years old, children are more sure of themselves and are less easily frustrated then at earlier stages. Creating friendships -Important part in social development is creating friendships. It is also a sign of good social progress. If a child is comfortable with others and has at least one friend it usually means that they are developing normally. If the child is unwilling to make friends, the problem should be identified and fixed because social development is a crucial part of life. Also important that there is interaction with others their own age, because if a child is only used to being around polite and considerate adults, there could be problems trying to interact with people their age later on in life. Children need to learn how to solve disagreements on their own, if no physical/emotional harm is being done, the children should be left to resolve it on their own. This is also a good step to learn in being able to resolve conflicts by themselves. Developing good self concept The formation of self concept begins at birth and continues throughout life. Even on the first days of life a newborn is beginning to form his or her self concept. Example, when the baby cries the parents respond willingly and quickly to comfort the baby. This makes the child feel worth while. As children begin to understand language, they are increasingly influenced by what people say to and about them. Children who have a positive self concept usually get along well with other people. They are generally confident and outgoing. • Self concept- The way you feel about yourself which affects your relationships with other people. • Positive self concept-An inclination to see oneself as good, worthwhile and capable. • Negative self concept- An inclination to see oneself as bad, unimportant or incapable. Respecting Individual Personalities Important for parents to respect the child's individuality. Parents often want them to be more like themselves. Parents should help their child's in finding themselves but they should let each child develop with their own personality. • Example, Outgoing parents may try to get their shy child to be more outgoing, which does not work. This is because a child self-concept depends on how well they feel accepted. Descriptions of the 3 basic personality types, these are extreme cases but many children show characteristics of more than one type. 1) Sensitive child -Prefers to be alone. -Long attention span (Spent long lengths of time with one activity and not get bored.) -Often lack the ability to stand up for their own rights/desires. -Less adventurous, hold back from new experiences often. -Less tolerant to conflict. How to help Parents must help children with new situations with less reluctance. If sheltered too much it does not encourage independence. Small tasks can be completed successfully which will help build the child's confidence. 2) Placid Child -Take things as they are -Often at peace with the world -Typically play happy with others -Outgoing and respond well to others -Often enjoy everyday tasks (they may create a game out of eating) -Require praise and encouragement like all other children. How to help Parents should be aware of the child’s needs and should be careful to offer Them a lot of time, care and attention. 3) Aggressive Child -Energetic and noisy -Inclined towards active and physical play -Rarely enjoy quiet activities such as drawing -Often take the toys they desire from others -If things do not go their way it could result in biting, kicking or hitting. Also, as a last result they could begin to cry or have a temper tantrum. How to help Praise is very useful for helping an aggressive children. Discipline • Discipline is the task of helping children learn to behave in acceptable ways on their own. The long range goal of discipline is to help children develop self-discipline (The ability to control ones own behavior.) The child will not always have someone around to tell them right from wrong. Discipline is often necessary to keep children out of danger.