PSYC 2314 Lifespan Development


PSYC 2314

Lifespan Development

Chapter 8

The Play Years:

Biosocial Development

Size and Shape

• Between 2-6 years, children grow almost 3 inches and gain about 4 ½ lbs. per year.

• By age 6, average child weighs about 46 lbs. and measures 46 inches.

• Body height and weight vary greatly from one child to another.

Size and Shape

• Factors Affecting Growth:

– Genetic background

– Health care

– Nutrition

Size and Shape

• Because growth is slower during the preschool years, children need fewer calories per pound.

• Iron-deficiency anemia is the most prevalent nutritional problem among children.

• A common problem among American families of all social classes is children’s overindulgence in sweets, and most eat too few fruits and vegetables and too much.

Brain Growth and Development

• During childhood, the brain develops faster than any other part of the body. This maturation underlies children’s rapidly expanding cognitive and motor abilities. By age 5, the brain has attained about 90 percent of its adult weight, and by 7, it is full-grown.

• Several areas of the brain undergo notable expansion, esp. those dedicated to control and coordination of the body, the emotions, and thinking processes.

• Around age 5, growth in the corpus callosum allows children to better coordinate functions involve both sides of the brain and body.

Accidental Injury

• Factors:

– Sex


– Neighborhood

Accidental Injury

• Injury Control

– Think prevention

– Think protection

– Analyze injuries

– Advocate safety

Mastering Motor Skills

• Gross motor skills improve dramatically between ages 2 and 6. While these abilities require practice, a certain level of maturation is also necessary. Children learn these skills by teaching themselves or by learning from other children.

• Fine motor skills are much harder for preschoolers to master.

Children’s Art

• Provides a means of practicing fine motor skills and enhances their sense of accomplishment.

• Also provides a testing ground for selfcorrection, and is related to overall intellectual growth.

Child Maltreatment

• All intentional harm to, or avoidable endangerment of, someone under age 18.

– Abuse

– Neglect

Child Maltreatment

• Factors

– Family income

– Social isolation

Consequences of Maltreatment

• Slower to talk

• Underweight

• Less able to concentrate

• Delayed in academic growth

• Tend to regard others as hostile and exploitive

• Less friendly, more aggressive, and more isolated

Intergenerational Transmission

• The phenomenon of maltreatred children growing up to become abusive or neglectful parents themselves.

Intervention Options

• Permanency planning: process of finding a long-term solution to the care of a child who has been abused.

– Foster care

– Kinship care

– Adoption

Prevention of Maltreatment

• Primary prevention: occur early in the sequence that can lead to maltreatment, before the problems start.

• Secondary prevention: preventing serious problems by spotting and treating the early warning signs that indicate maltreatment might develop.

• Tertiary prevention: aimed at halting the harm after it occurs and treating the victim