Psychology Assignment: Development Period of Childhood
Prepare a well-researched psychology assignment reflecting on the development period of the childhood.
The present psychology assignment talks about the development period of human lives that goes through various stages, which mainly include toddlerhood, childhood, adolescence and adulthood. Right from their toddlerhood till adulthood, a person grows and develops his or her personality through various incidents and activities, some of which become a milestone and some, just bad memories. Through this study, a deep analysis of the development period of the childhood of my life will be conducted with the aid of the two major theorists of Developmental Psychology which are gender identity theory and Piaget’s four stages of cognitive development.
Childhood: A treasure of life
Childhood has been one of the most treasured stages of my life, as is the case with most of us. Each one of us experiences the most relaxed and joyful part of our lives in our childhood. The memories experienced during our childhood are very important as they help us in remembering the best days of our lives. When one has a good childhood, it helps them in becoming happy individuals later in their lives. I am fortunate enough to enjoy a great period of childhood, which makes me look back those days on a happy note. There were a good amount of milestones, which shaped me, during those days of childhood. Some of the most important milestones include the following.
Firstly, I remember getting my first grade of A in my mathematics exam in the second grade. I was initially very bad in the subject and used to suffer problems in understanding the problems. Due to my mother’s constant patience and love, I was able to earn that top grade. Secondly, my fifth birthday celebration is a memory, which is very close to my heart, due to the presence of my maternal uncle with me and the gift of a toy bike, which he had presented me with, which had my favorite color of blue in it. He had taken me to the shop to buy that bike and I still distinctly remember, him giving me my favorite chocolate to me, while on our way back home. The third most profound milestone memory which I have was winning my first sports race which was held during our annual sports meet. It was a memorable day for me, as I can clearly remember, watching my mother who had a huge smile on her face, while she watched me receive the medal from the judges. As I stood on the podium, it was a surreal feeling. My father was also very happy with me and had brought me a new pair of running shoes for me, later that night. Apart from this, there was a not so good memory, where I had flunked in one of the papers of English. As far as I remember, I was at fault here. Most of the days back then, I used to play with my friends and used to spend time in the woods, fishing and plucking fruits and playing football. Those memories are still fresh, but I had to suffer, as the exams had drawn near. As a result, I had performed very badly in most of the subjects, with flunking in English. My parents were very disappointed. Later my father had called me up in his study and had made me understand the value of time and focusing on the present. He had helped me understand that we should learn to prioritize our things, when playing is important and when studies are. I have still kept that lesson intact and it has continued to guide me in my adolescent and adult years too. These are some of the things which I constitute some of the best memories and milestones of my childhood.
Gender Identity Theory:
According to this theory, identification and understanding of the personal concept of oneself as a male or female or in rare cases referring to both or neither is important and forms a basic and important part of our development of individuals. This concept is related to the concept of gender roles and gender-specific acts and activities (Olson et al., 2016). These reflect the outward manifestations which represent the personality and gender identity of the concerned individual. The roles of both intrinsic as well as external factors play a role in gender identity. For example, when a person considers himself to be a male, he would be most comfortable while undertaking those activities which are steeped in masculine traits. This would help him in identifying his gender as a male (Zucker, 2017). All these aspects are an outward expression of the kind of gender identity which we relate to and have. In most cases, gender role as well as identity is synonymous.
Analysis of My Childhood through Gender Identity Theory:
In my case, as a young boy, I used to get attracted to a lot of physical activities, which ranged from playing football, plucking fruits from trees, playing in mud during rains. I was mostly affectionate of adventurous activities and had also gone into trouble for that. The activities in both school as well as in my home amongst my friends, all had an impact in helping me identify my gender role and its related activities, but it also never clouded me in learning only the good qualities of my gender, but that of the other too. I used to spend time with both boys and girls during my games as well as in school, which I think helped me in learning the feminine traits of kindness, sympathy, sensitivity and warmth. The role of my mother and sister were also significant in my development of these qualities. Looking back now, I feel they were crucial and have formed a big part of me now. Now I understand people, seldom judge them and try to be in their shoes to understand them in a better way. In addition to this, the adventurism and risk taking has helped me in my life as well. All these things I think have played a crucial role in my personality and gender identity development.
Analysis: Piaget’s 4 Stages of Cognitive Development:
Piaget believed that the mental development of children goes through four different stages, which are:
Sensorimotor Stage (0-2 years): Here the infant knows the world through his or her sensation and movement and they learn about the basic actions such as looking, listening and sucking. It’s a basic stage (McLeod, 2018).
Preoperational Stage (2-7 years): Here the children learn to use symbols, words and pictures. At this stage, the children become a big egocentric and are not able to understand other’s perspectives. Here they learn to develop and understand language (Sarathy & Scheutz, 2016).
Concrete Operational Stage (7-11 years): Here the child learns to think logically and their thinking becomes much more organized. They begin to use inductive reasoning at this stage.
Formal Operational Stage (12+ years): At this stage, the adolescent becomes aware of his abstract thinking, and they become much more aware and interested in the moral, philosophical, ethical as well as social side of things. Here they learn to utilize the quality of deductive logic.
Analysis of My Childhood through Piaget’s Cognitive Development Theory:
These stages help me in analyzing and understanding the milestone activities of my childhood in a better way. When I had achieved my first Grade A in the second standard, back when I was six, was a big step. I had grasped the logical way of understanding things along with the tool of using inductive reasoning (Moore et al., 2015) Secondly, the bike which I had received on my fifth birthday was very special. I could understand the shape, functioning and use of bike. It was a surreal experience, which was very a small but important step in my direction of my life. Flunking in English, back in the sixth standard, was a significant incident of my life. It taught me many important lessons. Understanding the social and ethical point of view was initiated at that age, thanks to my father. Making the best use of the present time and prioritizing things have helped me since then. It was my father’s explanation and his warmth, which helped me in understanding the importance of his teachings, which has since then remained with me (Sarathy & Scheutz, 2016). Similarly, earning my first medal, making my parents proud, was a great achievement for me. At that age, I had this egocentric tendency of winning that race and making my parents proud. I used to practice a lot for that particular event. I think this was a part of my formal operational stage as per Piaget’s four stages of cognitive development.
Thus, I would like to conclude that childhood is a special part of every person’s life. It is filled with joyful memories and sweet lessons. In hindsight, I can tell the role of these two theories of Gender identity and cognitive development, has helped me in understanding my childhood in a much better manner. The activities, lessons and adventures undertaken back in those days when analyzed through these theories, aided in studying the reasons for undertaking them and in understanding the causes. Now as I look back, I understand them better.
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