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Now is the time to pause, and review your accomplishments: Was it only seven weeks ago that you began this journey through the expansive and intricate worlds of developing children? Before you go any further:
Review your completed Child Development Chart, and give yourself credit for creating such a rich and informative reference tool. Consider making a commitment to keeping your chart current by adjusting or adding to it so that it continues to reflect new findings in the early childhood development field.
Think back to the three observations you conducted, and recall those moments when you felt a special personal connection to the child or children you observed. If you can put in words what the essence of that connection was, you might uncover another reason for your passion for the early childhood field.
Recall the first three weeks of this course, during which you learned about the science of studying child development, the world of prenatal development, birth, and the amazing developmental changes during the infant and toddler years. You also began your child observations during that time-what a great way to deepen your understanding of theory by comparing it with the reality of children’s lives. After that, you immersed yourself in developmental changes during the early childhood years. And, as play is such an important element in the life of children 2-6 years old, you applied considerable effort to the study of play behavior and its implications for development in the biosocial, cognitive, and psychosocial domains. You, then, advanced to learning about major developmental changes that affect 7- to 11-year-old children; you refined your Child Development Chart; and you concluded your child observations by focusing on school-age children. Additionally, throughout this course, you expanded your knowledge about child development by learning about children and their concerns around the globe. And, along the way, you have had the opportunity to listen to a renowned child development scientist, watch exciting footage of babies and young children, and sharpen your own observation skills, as you listened to the observation commentary of two early childhood professionals.
Reflect on what you have learned, and review the course objectives; your responses to the course discussions and assignments; the feedback you received from your Instructor, as well as from your colleagues; and your experience creating, and contributing to, your Early Childhood Blog and its international dimension. Then, write a Reflection paper that includes the following:
- At least three insights you gained from your coursework, with regard to child development
- At least one insight you gained about children, and child development, related to global awareness, issues, and/or concerns
- Ways in which your initial assumptions, about children and how children develop, have changed and/or been strengthened by your work in this course.
- How any, or all, of Dr. Gopnik’s ideas in the media segment, “Studying Child Development: Lessons Learned,” stirred your professional curiosity, encouraged and/or inspired you professionally, and/or made you rethink assumptions you had about infants and young children
Assignment length: 2 pages