After interviewing four children ranging in age from preschool to high school, the importance of understanding their social, moral and emotional development was made apparent. Throughout the course of these interviews, the different developmental stages are explored by having the children answer five open-ended questions.
The first interview was conducted with a preschooler who has been diagnosed to be on the autism spectrum. Erikson suggested that people pass through eight psychosocial stages during their lives. The stage that was demonstrated by the preschooler ...view middle of the document...
58). At this stage a person’s intentions are never brought into consideration.
The last stage of development we look at is the socioemotional stage. During this stage peers start to play an important role in a child’s life. Peers are necessary for a child to develop socially and cognitively. The preschooler interviewed has been diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum. Although making significant achievement the preschooler mostly engages in solitary play (see Appendix A). Playing alone limits her interaction with her peers and thus hinders the positive aspects of peer play such as conflict resolution.
The interview was conducted with an eight year old who is currently in the third grade. By taking into account the age of the child and her feelings of accomplishment she demonstrates that she is in Erikson’s Stage IV or the industry versus inferiority stage (see Appendix B). Slavin states, “failure creates a negative self-image, a sense of inadequacy that may hinder future learning” (Slavin, 2012, pg. 55). This negative self-image is clearly not the case since the child indicates that she excels in many areas. A child that has a sense of inadequacy would have difficulty listing achievements.
According to Kohlberg, people pass through six stages of moral judgment and reasoning. These stages are an elaboration of Piaget’s (Slavin, 2012, pg. 38). The child seems to be in stage four of Kohlberg’s conventional level of moral reasoning. The “Law and Order” orientation claims that “right is doing one’s duty, showing respect for authority” (Slavin, 2012, pg. 59). The child’s reasoning for not breaking the rules was based on the Bible, thus showing a respect for the ultimate authority of God. (See Appendix B).
Next we move to the child’s socioemotional development. By early elementary school children begin to focus on more internal qualities such as intelligence and kindness when describing themselves (Slavin, 2012, pg. 64). The child described herself as fun, smart and good at school (see Appendix B). This indicates that she doesn’t use social comparison to evaluate herself, giving the impression that her self-esteem is high and based on her achievements.
The interview was completed by a middle school student who is fourteen years old. Piaget described autonomous morality as morality of cooperation stating that it arises as the child’s social world expands to include more and more peers (Slavin, 2012, pg. 58). It is the writer’s conclusion that the child has entered into this autonomous morality stage where fairness is defined as equal treatment or taking account of individual needs (Slavin, 2012, pg. 57). Based on her answer for question one, the student clearly values fairness with regards to breaking the rules (see Appendix C). All are punished for the offense of one.
In determining her psychosocial development,...