Theories Of Psychosocial Development

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Understanding how children develop and the interplay of nature versus nurture is an important area of research for the advancement of the human race. Research conducted into the development of children, namely Piaget and his theory of cognitive development and Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development have produced findings that have revolutionized the teaching of children and our understanding of how children develop. Interest into the development of children dates back to Ancient Greece where Plato and Aristotle were particularly interested in how their development was influenced by their nature and nurture. Since then, a number of Philosophers and researchers have produced theories into how children develop, all with the same goal in …show more content…
Erikson’s model includes eight stages that span across the person 's lifetime. Each stage is characterized by a crisis or mental challenge that must be overcome in order for the challenge not to become an ongoing issue. The first of Erikson’s stages occurs during the first year of life and it categorised by basic trust versus mistrust. This stage recognises the important role that parents have in teaching the child to form safe attachments. If in the first year of life, the parents are warm, consistent and reliable in their caregiving, the infant learns that people can be trusted and is able to transition to the next stage of the psychosocial theory. Erikson’s second stage of development occurs between the ages of one and four- the stage of autonomy versus shame and doubt. The goal of this stage is to achieve a strong sense of autonomy while adjusting to the increasing social demands. This stage puts forth the need for a supportive atmosphere that allows children to gain their sense of autonomy without diminishing their self esteem with harsh punishments and ridicule which would make them come to doubt their abilities. In the third stage of Erikson’s theory, children are trying to achieve a balance between initiative versus guilt (from four to six years.) It is during this stage that children are working toward achieving goals such as learning the alphabet and when children attain their conscience which is the internalization of their parents rules and standards. In order for children to progress successfully through this stage, parents must not be overly controlling or punitive so that children can develop their own high standards and the initiative to be able to meet them. Erikson’s fourth stage of development (from six to

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