Theory Of Child Development

Erik Erickson was born in Frankfurt, Germany. He went to a Montessori -style children’s school. This style focuses on the development of the child’s initiative through play and work. The Montessori style of education places the speed of the lessons on the hands of the learner. The teacher will teach the next lesson only if the child learns the current lesson.

In short, the child is not forced or rammed with lessons that he finds hard to swallow. He was a Freudian student propagating that child development is characterized by his eight stage psychosocial development. He insisted that the child learned to adapt to a new stage during his growing up years. Eric stated that child development centers on the basics of hope, purpose, will and competence as the basics of virtue (citation). The following paragraphs enumerate the authors who are true believers of Eric Erickson’s child development theories.

The author of the book The Change in Cultural Identity believes that Eric Erickson devoted most of his research to the subject of child development. Eric Erickson concludes by stating that identity conflict is one of the most important stages of his eight life stages of child development. He describes it as the stage of conflict starting from the identity stage and ends with the identity diffusion. The child will try to imitate his peers in the day care center. The child also imitates the actions of his parents, brothers, sisters and other people around him or her. He reiterates that identity conflict is a potential from the start of a person’s life and continues without decrease throughout the individual’s life in either a solved or unsolved condition (Kolm  120).

The article Ages and Stages: Is That the Child I Taught Last Year? The Elementary Age Student  adheres to the theories of Eric Erickson on child development.  The research conducted by Donna Brink Fox uses echo -clapping rhythmic patterns when a seed and story opened shows that the children with ages between 6 and 12 truly reflects what Eric Erickson characterized as the movement from equilibrium to disequilibrium as each stage is replace by a higher stage of the child’s development.

Some of the children are behaving with industry or inferiority. This is similar to Erickson’s Identity Conflict theory. The teacher believes that the child can learn faster and go to the next stage of the Eric Erickson stage by repeating each learning process. The learning process being studied here is the clapping of the hands. The experience teacher can easily pace her or his lessons based on the capacity of the child to absorb them. The teacher’s task then is to guide them in order to make the transition from one Erickson stage to the next a more bearable experience (“Ages and Stages: Is”1).

The article Pathways through Adolescence: Individual Development in Relation to Social Contexts emphasizes the author believes that several researches on the ontology of peer group structures and dynamics from infancy to maturity were based on the studies done such big names as Eric Erickson, Stack Sullivan, Lev Vygotsky, and others. As proof, there are so many religions today that tell their listeners that their sect is the one TRUE church. These churches also say that the other churches are false ones and the preachers there are false messengers of God. All these varying beliefs are due to the child’s easy acceptance of lessons at his or her early age. This study takes into consideration the identity conflict theory of Erickson (Cairns 37)

The article Choosing the Dream: The Future of Religion in American Public Life tells concludes that the author believes in Eric Erickson’s theory that people, including children believe in illusions and the dogmas or teachings of church. A child would easily be brainwashed to believe what his or her parents will tell him. A father that tells that Jesus Christ is not a God but only a man  would surely believe each and every word the child hears. This is similar to Erickson’s Identity conflict theory (Gedicks & Hendix 56)

Eric Erickson is a man of his word. He authored and spread his brand of child development theory. His theory is divided into eight progressive stages. He is an established name in psychology because of his in depth researches in child development are used as the basis for current day child development theory discussions. The authors of the above articles are steadfast in their faith in Eric Erickson’s child development theories.  The authors correctly believe in Erickson’s identity conflict theory which is only a part of his valid and relevant eight -stage child development theory. Conclusively, Eric Erickson is unquestionably an authority in the identity conflict theory that falls under his child development theory.


Works Cited

“Ages and Stages: Is That the Same Child I Taught Last Year? the Elementary-Aged Student.” American Music Teacher Oct.-Nov. 2002: 29+.

Cairns, Robert B. “CHAPTER THREE Social Networks Over Timeand Space in Adolescence.”  Pathways through Adolescence: Individual Development in Relation to Social Contexts. Ed. Lisa J. Crockett and Ann C. Crouter. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1995. 35-52.

Gedicks, Frederick Mark, and Roger Hendrix. Choosing the Dream: The Future of Religion in American Public Life. Ed. Henry Warner Bowden. New York: Greenwood Press, 1991.

Kolm, R., The Change in Cultural Identity, Ayer Publishing, 1980, N.Y.

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