Children are young people who are typically aged between birth and puberty. They are often dependent on their parents or guardians for emotional and physical support. The word child can also refer to a member of a clan or tribe, especially one who is still an infant or whose behaviour is immature.
A child’s brain is still developing, and this includes the ability to think critically, learn languages, and solve problems. This is a great time for children to be exposed to new information and experiences. This will help to build their resilience and prepare them for future challenges.
The most important thing is to make sure that children have the chance to reach their full potential. This means ensuring that they are safe, have access to quality education and healthcare, and are given opportunities to develop their talents and skills. The key to this is a strong family unit, where parents and other caregivers set high standards of behaviour and provide encouragement and positive reinforcement.
If a child is experiencing difficulties, specific assessment by the best fit professional (which may initially be the GP or Paediatrician and then Occupational Therapist, Speech Therapist, Psychologist and/or Physiotherapist) can help clarify the developmental issues, the extent of the challenge(s) and the steps that need to be taken to overcome them. This will help to reduce the risk of further decline or long term disability.
During childhood, children’s bodies and brains are developing at an incredible rate. This is a time of great change and growth, and it is important to keep in mind that every child’s experience will be unique. There are also many different milestones that can be used to measure a child’s progress, but it is important to recognise that some children may take longer than others to achieve these.
It is also important for children to have a sense of their own identity, and to feel valued. Children who struggle to meet expectations, or feel that they do not fit in, can become vulnerable to anxiety and depression. Children who seek fame or undue recognition can sometimes do so in an attempt to fill a void of feeling unloved or lonely.
Storytelling is a great way for children to express themselves and share their emotions. It also helps them to develop empathy by allowing them to put themselves in the shoes of the characters in the stories they read and hear. However, it is important to balance curiosity with respect, and remind children that they should always ask permission before approaching or talking to someone who is different from them.
It is also important to encourage children to ask questions and to be curious about the world around them. This will help them to develop a growth mindset, and this can be encouraged by praising their efforts and perseverance rather than criticising them when they are struggling. Children are innately motivated to please their parents and other adults, so if they are rewarded for their efforts, they will want to do it again.