Development is something thathappens to every individual during each stage of their lives.
The worddevelopment means to progress in growth. During the human life this involves thedevelopment of physical aspects, learning different skills and experience in theongoing maturity of cognitive and social skills. Development is a holisticprocess and it’s therefore important to remember that each child is unique andwill develop in their own way and at different times. A holistic process is a philosophicalapproach in which the whole person is evaluated and treated taking the wholedevelopment, sequence and rate into account.Sequence of development isthe order that a child is expected to develop.
For example a baby develops fromhead to toe and they will be able to hold their head up straight and lookaround before their eyes start to focus clearer. The next stage is that a babywill hold up and control their head and soon after that they figure out how tocoordinate and use their arms. A baby will wave their whole arm beforedeveloping the ability to wave just their hands or wiggle their fingers. As ababy becomes more confident in controlling their upper body, they will start toprop themselves up into a sitting position and once they have the strength tohold themselves up, they figure out how to turn their bodies from side to side.Gross motor skills have to be developed before the finer motor skills can belearnt. A baby’s physical development could begin with rolling over then sittingup, crawling, walking, running, yet another may sit up, walk, run, missing out therolling over and crawling. Even though some things are missed the developmentstill proceeds in an expected sequenced pattern.
The rate of developmentbasically means how quick a child takes to accomplish expected milestones. The speedcan vary from child to child, for example, one child could learn to walk at 10months whereas another may not walk until they are 14 months and so the rate ofdevelopment can differ frequently. So to conclude, the sequenceof development refers to what is considered the normal expected pattern inwhich children learn different skills. The rate of development indicates thespeed in which the child develops and the difference between the rate ofdevelopment and the sequence of development is that the sequence stays the same;hence the rate changes or varies. Another explanation is that some childrenmove from phase to phase faster than other children, and this concludes back tothe holistic approach.
When monitoring a child’sdevelopment all areas need to be observed and taken into account. These arephysical, intellectual, social, language/communication and emotional. Thesequence of development and the rate of development is important because, ithelps to identify where the child may need help or may be at risk of havingspecial education need.
In addition identifying the problem will help theschool work with other professional to help the child learn the skills they arestruggling with. It will also help the school plan and implement ways to ensurethat the child has enough support they require. In most cases the child isreferred to an appropriate professional to make sure their needs are meteffectively.