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The development of the child’s personality and the formation of basic communication, social, cognitive, and other skills occur in childhood. From birth, people constantly gain new experience and learn to perceive the world according to how they see it. The first years of life play an essential role in this process. Initial skills are acquired and assimilated in this period, and necessary experience is gained. In order to analyze the characteristics of children’s development in the earliest period, it is possible to use a scholarly book by Robinson or rather use one of her book’s chapters. The basis of this research paper will be the chapter describing the origins and features of child development in the first year of life. The evaluation of information will help to highlight the main ideas proposed by the author and assess the importance of the study from the point of view of everyday life and the upbringing of children by parents.
Main Ideas of the Chapter
The chapter is devoted to studying the features of children’s development in the first year of their life and considering those skills that they can and should master during this period. Also, some ideas are given about what factors influence the formation of the baby. According to Robinson, imitation is considered one of the basic features inherent in children (91). The chapter provides a system that reflects the child’s skills in a certain month of the first year of life and provides the description of those attainments that need to be developed by a specific age (Robinson 93). Such properties as a reaction, mobility, emotions, movement skills, and other factors are considered and explained. All the arguments have theoretical support. Conclusions are logical and supported by quotations from other authors.
Factors Influencing Development
In order to assess the development of children, it is essential to have an idea of what attainments should be evaluated. According to Robinson, “there still remains the controversy as to what skills and abilities babies are already equipped with” (80). It means that the process of the children growing up in the first year of life raises issues about what volume of experience he or she should have and whether there is a unified approach in this case or not. When assessing this judgment from a critical point of view, it is possible to assume that there are certain norms that determine the physiological and mental development of children. Nevertheless, a number of factors can influence personality formation patterns – the environment, parents’ attitude, overall health indicators, and some other criteria.
Thus, for example, if parents are interested in the quick and correct development of their children, they constantly talk to them, do exercises, and perform other procedures aimed at speeding up the baby’s adaptation to the new world. However, such factors as family problems, poor living conditions, or the indifference of parents adversely affect the formation of basic skills, and some delays in development may manifest. In order to avoid it, it is significant to give the child proper attention because, as Robinson claims, at the initial stage of life, a person completely depends on the people around him or her (81). Therefore, appropriate upbringing and care will ensure full development from different points of view.
Imitation as One of the Primary Factors
One of the key and natural skills that are inherent in the child at the beginning of life is the ability to imitate people’s behavior. According to Robinson, in the second half of the first year, infants copy adults’ actions, intonation, and gestures (92). This type of behavior is understandable. The child at an early stage of his or her life does not have highly developed cognitive skills and cannot analyze the actions regarding their relevance in certain situations. This information can be useful for parents because when knowing about this property of infant development, they can control their behavior and strive to present any information in a form convenient for the child. Moreover, if adults intend to raise a baby in a personal example, it will help them to forget about bad habits in the presence of the child in order to avoid imitating them. Therefore, further studies may be devoted to the influence of adult behavior on the development of the child’s specific attachments and hobbies.
Another idea mentioned in the chapter is the recognition by the infant of self and others. The author is genuinely perplexed about how the baby begins to realize the difference between other people and himself or herself (Robinson 94). This property is also formed at the initial stage of life. A more detailed study of this phenomenon can allow both parents and psychologists to better understand the psyche of infants and to use this knowledge as the basis for the education of an altruistic personality.
The assessment of the chapter helps to identify key ideas related to the child’s first year of life and to make propositions concerning further possible research related to this topic. A number of factors influencing the development of infants should be taken into account to simplify the upbringing process. Imitation is one of the properties inherent in babies is their innate feature. Children’s ability to distinguish themselves from others can help in adapting to the world around them.
Robinson, Maria. Child Development from Birth to Eight: A Journey Through the Early Years. McGraw-Hill Education, 2008.