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The Stages of Learning Process and Development for Babies

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In the first year of a child’s life they do not stop learning. An important part is learning their senses. Children have to learn touch, taste, smell, sight and sound. It is important to learn these as they need them to make sense of the world. Some of the senses to start life with are connected to survival such as taste and smell and being able to hold onto a finger. Over a period of months babies will start to use their senses for learning as they start to grow and develop. Babies make sensory development over the first year of their lives as they hit different ages their stages start to develop and should hit certain criteria. New-born baby’s brains are not co-ordinated with vision to each eye and that means they can only follow objects that are close to their face and not objects that are far away. They are also very sensitive to light at their age. They also have reflexes to grasp movements if an object is put into the hand and sucking movements if anything is put near their mouths.

At one month old babies sensory development increases and they start to get startled in response to sudden noises. Babies at this age also learn to stop crying when held or spoken to. They can now start to follow movements of a toy or a person’s face that are held near to them, it helps if the colours contrast. It is thought and believed that babies do not yet see colours yet and therefore see colours as light or dark instead. Babies would also learn to feed correctly and will start to suck other items that they get hold of. Babies will also start to turn their heads towards the light and towards a human voice.

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When babies turn three months old they will start to move their heads to follow objects up to 15-25cm away from their face and will start to stare at human faces. Babies at three months old like to watch the movements of their own hands and can hold a rattle and can shake it around but can’t coordinate eye contact with the toy whilst it moves. Babies can now see colours and is able to differentiate between them. Babies start to ‘coo’ to reply to familiar adults touch or sound and gets excited at the sound of food being prepared.

At six months old babies can pass different toys from hand to hand. They can also investigate the source of sound and can recognise familiar sounds and voices across the room. They also grab/touch a bottle or their mother’s breast whilst being fed. Weather when babies start weaning they may start reject tastes or textures that they do not like such as certain flavours like coconut. Babies also put everything in their mouth at this age to explore it and figure out what the object feels like or if it is food. At this age they develop their binocular vision (vision using two eyes with overlapping fields of view, allowing good perception of depth). This means they can hold onto a toy that is spotted in their binocular vision.

At nine months old, babies start to poke items with their index finger to figure out what the object is before actually holding the item. Once they have the object in their hands babies start to learn pincer grasp to hold objects or food accurately. Babies also know how to pick up and object that is in reach and how to drop an object now and can now be very messy; this also means they can drop food they don’t like on the floor. Their hearing also starts to improve and they start to listen out for sounds that they hear every day and start to understand their significance. Babies still put everything in their mouths and are still weaning so they may reject certain foods, they are also exploring lumpy foods.

When babies reach the 12 month (1 year) stage, they can use pincer grasp to pick up objects more easily and have learnt how to drop and throw things when they wish to. They will also start to develop their personality such as taking a shine to certain toys such as toys that make noise or nursery rhymes. They will also start to favour certain foods too others and will make it clearer when they dislike a certain food. They will still like to put objects into their mouths but will start to show interest in objects and will start to explore them through touch and sight.

Identify stages of cognitive development in children from birth to 7 years.

Children go through stages of cognitive development which help them to interpret information which they can then use to understand things such as numbers, letters, colour and jigsaws. As children get older their cognitive skills develop further to help them learn harder tasks such as they go from counting to recognising numbers to adding and subtracting and then multiplying and dividing. I will now go through the stages from birth to 7 and their different skills.

At birth to 1 year old children learn a lot of different cognitive skills. They also learn from three months old to pick out familiar faces that they may recognise and their voices for example mum and dad in a baby’s life will be easily remembered or their main carers. Babies start getting more advanced at eight months old and can then start to follow instructions like when they may be asked to put an object away into a certain box they can then do that. Babies can also start to find objects that have been hidden that they have seen and also can start to look for an object that has been removed from sight. When a toddler is 1-2 years old they start to develop even further learning new skills to use in life. At this age they start to respond to instructions such as ‘stay there’ or ‘come on’ and understand words such as ‘kiss’ and ‘cuddle’. They can also start to point to things such as pictures and part of their bodies such as noses or ears or feet.

At 2-3 years old their development starts to become more complicated and toddlers are able to do new tasks such as pick out a large item when asked or a small item as well as being able to find the odd one out such as a pink large bead in a large group of small white beads. They can also match up to 3 colours and stack their beakers in order. At this stage they can also start to complete 3 piece puzzles and copy a circle which shows great development in their motor skills as well.

At 3-4 years old children start to learn different things such as they can start to repeat the words of their favourite stories to you and recognise the names of characters. They can also start to count to 10 with help and eventually know how to do it on their own. This happens if you repeat the teaching regularly and once they know it have regular recaps. Children can also start to put objects in order of size or shape or colour and can also do puzzles which involve these or a game that involves these factors. Children can also start to tell you if an object is short, long, light or heavy when they see or hold it. Children can also recognise basic colours and the name for them such as they can start to say that their dress is red and purple or green and blue. Children can also start to match objects one to one such as matching number 4 with 4 objects.

When children turn 4-5 years old they start to learn new skills in all different topics such as; literacy, mathematics, physical, emotional and social developments. For example, in literacy development children can now start to recognise and write their own names and sound their names out. Children can also start to name more than eight colours and can name them out of memory without having to see the colour in front of them. A child can now find items that are slightly larger out of a group such as find six large shells out of the group and can tell you which object is heavier by holding two different objects. Children can now do a 15-20 piece jigsaw puzzle of their preference.

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