Early Childhood Education
Developmental Delay in Children
According to Fedoroff Barbara (2012), parents and child developers (professional educators) are deeply worried when faced with a child’s development being delayed, contrary to the normal child growth and development. Further is that for professional educators, it is important first to separate the child’s identity from the possibility of a developmental delay. Through this, the child’s wholeness is still valued. The best is achieved through separation of the affected child from his/her non-typical behavior/trait and instead concentrating on a number of positive role-plays.
When first parents get news of possible developmental delay in their children, they often get worried about the well-being of their children. The issues that come into their minds focus on the future through a myriad of questions about the worst possible case scenarios, which their children might face. The concerned parents, to find possible reasons for such delays, also perform a review of the past. The above, being a departure from the present, needs to be corrected, through step by step focusing on the present, where the caregiver who is experienced on daily observation of children takes all the necessary steps to ensure positive child growth.
Through their skills, in recognizing possible delays in child development, professional educators are able to provide the best advice to concerned parents as to the best help to seek. This may include evaluations/tests by either developmental specialists or pediatricians. According to the NAEYC Standards, I am in agreement with the author’s views, as the standards are set to act and serve the rights, needs and well-being of young children. Primary focus is put on the provision of both developmental and educational resources and services, as cited in NAEYC Bylaws, Article (1), Section 1.1.
According to Torelli (2012), proper and positive child growth both at home and in a majority of childcare centers requires an element of male character. This may be in the espoused by the father (at home), or male caregivers and teachers in the early childhood development phase. Viewing it as an almost exclusive field for women, the lack of male professionals has over time impacted to some extent on the early development of children. Further is the fact that this field is “low paying” in the terms of wages.
Men, cultured to believe in the ideal financial support as the primary avenue of care for their families, often look down at such jobs. They conceive that responsibility to be inferior to the male species. In addition, parental concern is based on their ideals of women being the primary caregivers of infants and young children. Culturally, this in addition to the long-term socialization has depicted the woman as being the primary caregiver in a family; her functions and roles specifically tailored towards childcare and homemaker. The resultant effect is that room for diversification, as pertaining to the child rearing model, has been non-existent or at best open on limited basis.
Men in the Provision of Early Child Development.
Furtherance is the myriad of research studies, which focus on the effects of maternal employment to child development, and this clearly depicts a superiority of women over men in the provision of early child development. According to NAEYC, the male factor is crucial to the overall wellbeing of the family unit. Though women are better positioned for overall care of young children, men can and are encouraged to involve themselves more in young child growth. This may be through more frequency in contact and relations with the children, as experience indicates. Men can also become pivotal role models.
Lori Riggs states that “Auditory processing” not only entails processing, but also hearing abilities in a child. Unfortunately, a rise in the case of auditory processing disorders is being recorded in the contemporary arena. Accordingly, “hearing” entails proper utility of the peripheral mechanisms, such as the outer ear, the middle ear and inner ear (containing the cochlea). When well functioning and intact, a child’s hearing is considered normal.
The sound wave signals travel along one’s auditory nerves, then through what is called the brainstem and finally reaching the brain itself. This second phase is what is defined as auditory processing. Pertaining to the aforementioned auditory processing, the following are some aspects associated with it proper auditory attention, auditory sequential processing, auditory discrimination, auditory sensitivity and memory, auditory tonal and figure-ground processing abilities. In addition to the above, proper childhood development functionality pertaining to auditory processing, short-term memory, language development and executive function is working.
Auditory processing is often affected by the following factors; each fundamental to the overall process of hearing and conception hearing, if proper or balanced; developmental issues, as pertaining to the presence of brain injuries, autism or Down syndrome among others. The lack of appropriate opportunities and stimulation of the brain, that appropriately organizes its functions, often results in the persistence of neurological disorganization.
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In addition to the above two factors there are neurological organization (as pertaining to brain efficiency and effectiveness in carrying out its mandate and functions), and sound sensitivity. I am in agreement with Lori Riggs because a child needs a proper functioning auditory processing system, as this entails the core manner of interaction and communication. This helps a child to develop well in different aspects.
Caregivers and parents need to acknowledge the fact that not all children can be fully consistent with their inert sequencing levels at all the times. Rather, as normal human beings, children, just like adult folk, do get bored, excited at other times, tired and distracted in their sequencing, during their childhood growth. This inconsistency is quite normal, and thus taking issue or being angry with a child due to the above is not conducive.
Instead, one should be laid back keeping in mind that the overall functional ability of a child is the most important; thus if it is improving, hence it is a step in the right direction. If it is not improving, then one needs to factor the other issues, such as proper ear functionality; overall psychological and physical health among others. One needs to be highly observant to the way a child develops because early development influences later life achievements. Critical to the above is the need for responsibility initiation from an early childhood age, as improvement in processing ability is partially rooted in a child’s sense of personal responsibility undertakings. This may be from small time roles such as washing own hands, brushing own hair and teeth, to more complex ones such as simple cooking and personal clothing.
Through constant encouragement and “some push”, caregivers and parents should slowly, but surely increase the number of roles, duties and responsibilities, which children should perform. As they grow, so the normal processing ability will be aided by magnificent brain functionality. Consistency is a key to the overall improvement, the presence of various huddles not with standing. Behavior can be a barrier to the improvement of overall processing capability an outcome of proper processing capacity. I am in agreement with the above, as a child’s processing capacity improves, so it should correlate with increases in responsibilities. Parents and caregivers should especially strive in pushing the children towards greater responsibility levels.
How Learning Environment is Important for Child’s Development
According to Doman (1986), the most vital aspect, pertaining to how well and how much children learn, is primarily rooted in the environment of learning itself. Through a presence or absence of instilled self-perception (of one’s success), a child’s development may inadvertently be discouraged. The learning capacity of a child is directly reflective of his/her enthusiasm at learning more. Through motivation by success, in addition to its enjoyment, a child perceiving him/herself as being able to perform excellently, will be more motivated.
Through motivation, he/she will learn to do a task more often, and thus will result in the betterment of that particular task. Through brain input from human senses, children are thus able to learn. The learning is a direct reflection of their brain’s receiving capabilities, as pertaining to a specific input, in terms of the intensity, frequency and duration. Children may or may not have overall control over the input intensity being primarily influenced by the overall learning environment present.
The presence of a positive environment inadvertently encourages proper learning, while a negative surrounding usually creates vivid neurological dysfunction in a child through the discouragement of learning and development. When positive contribution on the part of parents and caregivers is frequently utilized in the creation and reinforcement of positive learning environments, children develop positive attitudes, better learning rates and higher self-image. Consequently, I am in agreement with Doman in the notion that children espouse attributes impacted by the educational processes present.
If the resultant output is not up to the measure, than the caregivers, educators and parents should instead focus on the examination and if necessary modification of input provided. This eventually creates the prerequisite positive learning environment.
Sensory deprivation is pegged to the lack of brain efficiency through the proper brain stimulation by means of the five human senses. These senses enable us function with relative ease and precision, as our brain precisely relates with what is going on around us. Children, on the other hand, are especially fragile, as it takes some time for their brains to fully and maturely function. During this growth period, proper stimulation of the brain is critical in the creation of more brain cell functionalities through the integrated brain function pathways.
A lack of proper brain stimulation through the aforementioned five sensory paths, often results in dramatic brain efficiency changes in addition to potential memory loss, personality changes and a lowered IQ. Fortunately, the research studies prove that the above can be reversed when the present deprivation is stopped and proper brain stimulation applied/resumed. Long-term sensory deprivation is proven drastic in nature, as it affects the overall psychological balance in human beings and especially children.
In examples where children are restricted in their movement, as exemplified by the presence of a wheel-chaired cerebral palsy child, the restriction deprives the affected child of much needed stimulation. This stimulation often emanates from the unconstrained movement, which provides the human brain with prerequisite vestibular, tactile and pro-prioceptive feedback as pertaining to body stimulation through its muscles, extremities and joints.
Head injuries, in addition to malformation cases, provide similar restrictive surroundings, which in the end deprive brain matter with critically required stimulation. Through confinement to a non-stimulating surrounding, the brain eventually becomes dull, in addition adding to its overall confusion and disorganization. NACD, being aware of the above, provides individualized sensory stimulation programs intended to prevent or overcome the aforementioned.