The task I have been given to write about is to describe three patterns in each area of development of children from birth to 8 years. I will link each milestone which is ages 0-2, 3-5 and 5-8 with each area of development. The areas of development are physical, intellectual, emotional and social. The development of a child can be affected in a variety of ways for example behavioural problems, environmental factors and psychological factors. I will also be studying my cousin Katie who is 8 years old.

Patterns of development

There are certain patterns of development children are expected to follow. Although they are expected to follow patterns they do develop at their own rate. There are some factors which effect children's development such as

* Amount of attention given to the child by parents and carers for example encouragement and time.

* Health problems or genes inherited

* Quality of the child's environment.

If there are serious delays in development it maybe an indication of an underlying problem. Growth and development are closely linked.

Physical growth

Every child's rate of growth varies. At birth a babies head is out of proportion with the rest of its body. The child's growth is monitored by the health visitor and plot on the centile chart.

Gross motor skills - use of muscles to control the body and larger movements.

Fine motor skills- smaller movements and manipulation.

Sensory skills- use of the senses: sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell.

Infant 0-1

Newborn babies have a natural grasping reflex. It is although an object is placed in a babies hand their fingers will curl round thus giving the impression they are trying to hold on to the object this only lasts for a short while it usually disappears after 3 months. At this age they also show an interest in their hand movements. Newborn babies have several unintentional reflexes which help babies to survive. Muscles in the neck must develop before babies gain control of their head movements.

A 6 month old baby will have complete control of their head movements. Babies also have a "pincer" grip this is when a baby holds an object between their finger and thumb this develops by the age of 1. At this age they also drop objects voluntarily and point at objects they want. Babies are usually able to sit up unaided by the age of 1 year old.

By the age of 1 a child's sight is almost developed to its full potential. They can focus on objects a long distance away. A child begins to see and pick up small objects and recognise bold, brightly coloured objects.

Pre-school child 3-5 years

At this stage hand and eye co-ordination has developed well large pieced jigsaws are completed easily. They can also turn pages in a book. The use of a spoon is perfected with very little spillages.

At around 3 years using the pedals on a tricycle is mastered. Standing, walking and tip toeing is done with confidence at the age of 4. At the age of 3 a child becomes familiar with a few primary colours. They will also be able to identify certain stories and want to hear them repeatedly.

At the age of 4 the child's recognition of colours has developed they are able to match four primary colours. Their understanding of stories also improves they are able to follow stories with their eyes and recognise words and pictures. At 5 a child enjoys ball games.

School age 5-8 years

The preference of which hand the child uses is evident. At the age of 5 a child can draw a clear picture of a person. They can dress and undress. At the age of 5 a child can match ten to twelve different colours. Their vision hearing taste and smell are fully developed.

At 6 the child can catch a ball with one hand. . At school age they gain confidence and are reassured in using gross motor skills. The child has developed good balance and is able to ride a bicycle at the age of 6.

At 7 a child can form letters well and their writing is clear and more detailed. At the age of 8 writing will b regular with joined up letters. They are able to tie laces they also enjoy ball games and are able to kick a football. By the age of 7 and 8 the child can climb and balance well on play equipment. Katie enjoys to run around and climb trees.

Intellectual development

There are two types of intellectual development they are:

* Language development

* Cognitive development

Cognitive development is the understanding whereas language development is both verbal and non-verbal communication.

The pattern of intellectual development usually follows the same sequence as physical, social and emotional aspects of development because they are closely linked. A child must pass one stage at a time.

Language development is a way for a child to express their needs, to socialise with others, share information with others language is needed to do all these. Depending on opportunities to speak a child's speech will develop depending this factor. Verbal communication is developed by mimicking others.

Language is made up of composite parts are linked together:

* Verbal communication

* Listening

* Gestures

* Facial expression

* Writing

* Reading

* Pictures

Verbal Communication

Children not only learn the meaning of the word but grammar as well. This takes a lot of practice. Development of this can be helped by such activities as:

* Mimicking sounds

* Learning the definition of different sounds

* Listening to voices

* Practising sounds

* People talking to the child

The development of verbal communications varies from child to child. Katie enjoys to mimic sounds and people.

There are two stages in language development these are:

* Pre-Linguistic

* Linguistic

Pre-linguistic stage occurs in the period babies are able to gain, attention by means of crying, smiling and facial expressions.

Linguistic is when speech begins to develop. To start the words are usually one syllable they are also holophrases which means a single word has several meanings.


Children must learn this to communicate effectively. This skill is usually mastered by the time a child stars school.

Non verbal communication

This is evident in a child from a very early age. Some methods of this are:

* Using different tones for different emotions.

* Using eyes to make eye contact

* Displaying different emotions by means of facial expressions

* Using gestures is another way to communicate.

Cognitive Development

This is when a child develops understanding of the environment. Cognitive development is the development of concept skills, creativity, imagination, memory, object permanence and concentration.


Children learn different concepts. Through seeing them, experiencing them through adults providing support, equipment and activities.

Problem solving

This is the ability to solve problems both simple and complicated. They may also learn to recognise shapes and learn to ride a bike; this is usually linked to reason.


A child's ability to use their imagination to express their ideas.


Children see things that are not in front of them or do not exist, play pretend games, make up stories or talk to an imaginary friend.


A child is able to store ideas and retrieve information, ideas and events which have occurred. A child's memory improves throughout childhood.

Object permanence

This is the understanding that an object still exists when it is out of sight. Children enjoy treasure hunts and games like this because they like to find hidden objects.


As a child gets older their concentration improves. A newborn baby's concentration span is a few seconds. Some factors which effect a child's concentration are

* Tiredness

* Illness

* Lack of interest

* Deprivation

Patterns of intellectual development

Infant 0-1

Babies will develop an understanding of their carers and surroundings. They also communicate needs through crying. They also watch adults closely. A child will explore objects with touch and with their mouth. As a child learns to walk it wants to explore even more. They also use copying and repetition to gain understanding. New objects tend to interest them more as they are not used to them.

Toddler1-3 years

The development of intellect occurs quickly at this stage. A child gains understanding of their surroundings and the foundations of future learning are made. They also begin to understand that there are consequences to their actions. They also repeat actions they enjoy.

Pre-school 3-5 years

It's clear that the child begins to show more reasoning by asking questions such as "how?" "When?" "where?" and "why?" This helps develop understanding. They also spend more time doing activities they have an interest in.

School age 5-8 years

At this age children show more understanding and reasoning, this is due to personal experience. Writing also improves and the use of trial and error is not as frequent. A child's concentration also increases. Memory and understanding develops rapidly.

Social and Emotional Development

Infant 0-1 years

Babies are very sociable and are born with a need for company. A lonely baby will cry for attention. The pattern usually followed by a child is:

* Make eye contact, smiling and babbling with their main carer.

* Knowing they are part of a family recognising people they are familiar with.

* Socialising and co-operating

The first development of social skills is with a parent or carer. They form a bond quickly with these people. A child's personality begins to emerge. They begin to socialise with those close to them by means of eye contact, laughing, crying and smiling. Babies learn to recognise a voice or face at the age of 1 month and react by smiling. By 2 months a child communicates through noises. At 3 months surroundings and familiar faces are taken notice of.

At this age a child's feelings are clearly expressed. A child is more aware of themselves and they also prefer to be with their primary carer or mother at the age of 6 months. At 9 months the child becomes very attached to their primary carer. They also enjoy playing but still cry if they need changing or if they are hungry. At 1 year there is a lot of affection towards parents and familiar adults. They can also play simple games and wave goodbye.

Toddler 1-3 years

At this age a child learns that each child is a unique individual. They also recognise their own name when they begin to crawl they explore the environment around them. Tantrums and mood swings are very common at this stage. Although they gradually disappear when the child is more content.

Pre-school 3-5 years

They have more self-identity and are more sociable individuals. They are also more able to express their emotions and are more confident. There is also a development of friendships and they are happier to be left alone with adults. At the age of 4 and 5 they are friendlier and have a greater self-confidence. They are also more trusting.

School age 5-8 years

At this age the understanding of gender roles is established. An understanding of rules and fair play is developed. A confidence and proudness of their work is also visible. Between 6 and 8 years the willingness to share equipment is visible. They are also more critical of their achievements. The child is also easily influenced by older people and also like to be included if they are left out they get upset. At the age of 8 they have developed their on personality and identity.