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Working With Children

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Working With Children In Outdoor Education A child is not a mini adult. This is a very important statement to understand when working with children in any situation. Understanding this will enable the teacher/instructor to set a programme of work, which considers the needs of children, with regards to their stages of growth and development. In 1976 D.L. Gallahue stated: "Without a clear understanding of children we become teachers of content rather than teachers of children" Development The development of an individuals needs can be looked at under a number of different headings. Intellectual Development - an increase in skill and complexity of function occurs as part of the progress towards maturity Physical Development - the growth and development of the muscles, bones and energy systems of the body Social Development - the development of relationships with peers groups and the adult world Emotional Development - the development of an individual's self concept Everybody has a chronological age, which represents the age of the person in calendar years. ...read more.


First two years - rapid motor development Pre School - all basic locomotor skills normally established: development of range of eye and limb co-ordination 8 years Adolescence - wide range of physical skills developed Adolescence Adult - reinforcement of previously learned skills, introduction to new skills Physical Development Growth can be defined as: An increase in physical size of the whole or any parts, dimensions or tissues, that occurs as part of the child's progress towards maturity. There are a number of factors which affect the rate of growth of an individual; * Maternal nutrition * Abuse during pregnancy e.g. smoking * Nutrition during early months/years * Physical activity during childhood * Genes - inherited characteristics The rate of growth of a child up to post adolescence is continuous but not consistent. The teacher/instructor will be familiar with growth spurts. A child in the class completes the last course of lessons (swimming) ...read more.


joints maintained and extended * Development of muscles * Increase in strength * Development of cardio-respiratory system Social and Emotional Development Children's social development is influenced by a number of factors, their home life, their school, their friends and also their own stage of emotional development. Although a child may be an early physical developer, the teacher/instructor must remember that their social and emotional development may not have reached the same stage. A good example of this would be the five year old child who is tall for his age and, as a result of this, has also developed motor skills above the level of most children of the same age. It is easy for the teacher/instructor to expect this child to behave in the manner of an older child just because of his appearance. If his social and emotional development is also taken into consideration the teacher/instructor may be able to establish a better relationship based on lower expectations of his social abilities. ...read more.

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