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Early Childhood & Adolescent Development

The following research paper presents the topic of life span, to include early childhood and adolescent development. These groups are compared and contrasted with regard to social and emotional, cognitive, and physical development. The results of a literature review are followed by a discussion of findings. It is concluded that while adolescence may include behaviors from childhood, this stage is distinctively different from that of young children in social, emotional, cognitive, and physical ways.

Fine (2004) reported that adolescence has been treated as a specific stage of development with specific values, beliefs, and behaviors. However, adolescent identity is more currently viewed as being socially constructed with childhood and adult sources. Fine proposes that adolescence is a transitory temporal period in which individuals create cultural traditions distinctive to this period. Childhood behaviors that are not discarded during adolescence are viewed as inappropriate and adult behaviors are considered enhancing of the self. Adult expectations encourage or discourage behaviors drawing from these two resources. Even within this perspective, however, there are distinct social, emotional, cognitive, and physical aspects that are related to early childhood and adolescence.

Erikson presented psychosocial developmental stages for all ages. For each of these stages the individual struggles with a conflict and masters it to go on to the nest stage of development. If physical and emotional needs are met the task is completed however if the toddler is not able to finish the task they develop a sense of self-doubt which hinders later developmental stages. Preschoolers must master the initiative versus guilt conflict and learn to initiate activities developing a conscience and sexual identity. The school-age child must master the industry versus inferiority conflict to develop skills and a sense of self-worth. The adole...

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Early Childhood & Adolescent Development. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 06:55, February 23, 2017, from