Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child

The needs of the pediatric patient differ depending on age, as do the stages of development
and the expected assessment findings for each stage. In a 500-750-word paper, examine the
needs of a school-aged child between the ages of 5 and 12 years old and discuss the
Compare the physical assessments among school-aged children. Describe how you would
modify assessment techniques to match the age and developmental stage of the child.
Choose a child between the ages of 5 and 12 years old. Identify the age of the child and
describe the typical developmental stages of children that age.
Applying developmental theory based on Erickson, Piaget, or Kohlberg, explain how you
would developmentally assess the child. Include how you would offer explanations during
the assessment, strategies you would use to gain cooperation, and potential findings from
the assessment.

Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child

Children are part of pediatric patients that have to be cared for either by medical doctors,
parent, guardians, or by relatives. One common aspect about pediatric patients is that they have
varying needs, an aspect that extensively applies to children as they grow up. At different ages,
children have different needs when it comes to cognitive abilities and emotional development.
As a result, developmental assessment is vital for children as they grow up. Children aged
between 5 and 12 years are very active as they grow up and they require a lot of attention and a
balance of autonomy as well for promotion of self-identity and freedom (Çelik & Ergün, 2016).
This essay makes a growth assessment and examination of the needs of a school going
child between age 5 and 12 years old by outlining their physical change and needs, and typical
developmental stages based on Erikson’ Growth and Developmental Theory.
Pediatric age and needs Assessment for School-going Children


In this case, the main way to understand physical growth and developmental changes, and
learning capabilities in children is via assessment and observation changes. As children interact
and play, one is able to closely observe and assess their learning capabilities. Observations
enable others to understand how children make meaning of their surroundings and how they end
up learning how to do things (Knight, 2017). According to Çelik & Ergün (2016), the needs of a
child can be fulfilled through both child-initiated learning, and planned activities. It is through
these engagements, and social interactions that children are able to extend their learning scope.
Comparative Physical Assessment of School-going Children
Most school going age children between the age of 5 and 7 years have a vibrant growth
cycle that see them very busy. They enjoy staying busy and having multiple out-door activities.
Some common activities that they enjoy include drawing and painting. Most of them would lose
their first tooth during this period. Almost all of them also tend to have a sharp vision just like
that of an adult. Such skills as riding bikes and jumping ropes are practiced often as a way of
cementing skills (Çelik & Ergün, 2016).
When it comes to children aged 8 and 9 years old, they tend to be sharper, faster, and
psychologically involved in what they do. For example, they tend to be self-conscious about
how they look and they tend to groom self completely, especially when it comes to girls, as
compared to those aged between 5 and 7 years. Others start using tools such as hammers, and
screw drivers among others to imitate their parents or people they emulate (Knight, 2017).
As for children aged between 10 and 12 years are considered to be in pre-adolescent
stage. They are more conscious of their physical body changes as compared to other groups
outlined. It is at this age that some girls start developing breasts, and pubic hair. Some boys start


growing facial hair, pubic hair, and a few ay have broken their voice. Menstrual periods for girls
most likely start at this age bracket. In addition, children at this stage care more about the
opinions of others are a higher rate of friendships is formed. Decision making is also at peak
during this period as personality and social development gain momentum (Knight, 2017).
Typical Developmental Assessment for a Child Aged 5-12 Years
A typical case of a child between age 5 and 12 years old is Sheila. She is eleven years old
and is in the first grade at a mixed public school. It is observed that she likes to play with dolls,
loved bed-time stories, and enjoys friendship with other children. It is observed that Sheila loves
group plays with other children where they jump ropes, play catch by throwing a ball to each
other, and also likes to imitate how her mother wears her clothes and puts her hair. She is also
keen about organizing things and understanding why things are the way they are and how they
work. Based on Erikson’s theory, since Sheila is aged between 5 and 12 years, she is in the
fourth psychosocial stage called Industry vs. Inferiority.
Applying Erikson’s Psychosocial Development Theory
Unlike Sigmund Freud who used psychosexual development, Erik Erikson explains the
growth and development in children using a psychosocial development approach. He outlines
that children undergo different stages of growth and development with varying needs. These
stages include; stagnation and generativity, mistrust and trust, doubt and shame vs. autonomy,
guilt vs. initiative, confusion vs. identity, industry vs inferiority, and finally intimacy vs.
isolation. However, for school age children between 5 and 12 years, their physical, emotional,
and psychological needs fall within the Industry vs. Inferiority stage (Cherry, 2018).


As outlined by Knight (2017), children aged between 5 and 12, such as Sheila, fall in the
fourth psychosocial crisis stage during their development. It is at this stage that children start
gaining some level of independence and freedom in terms of performing basic actions. Parents
contribute to this autonomy by letting them make simple choices. For example, Sheila was
trained how to go to the toilet and wash her hands a year later. Currently, she prefers to do it by
herself and is shy to have someone watch her go to the toilet, thus some autonomy being given to
her by allowing her to that all by herself. When it comes to toy preferences, she is allowed to
choose the type of dolls she prefers. According to Cross & Cross (2017), children in the Industry
vs. Inferiority stage end up feeling secure and confident. A balance between shame and
autonomy is cultivated at this stage for such children and they are guided to act within reason
and limit.
Children in the Industry vs. Inferiority stage must be handled with care when it comes to
addressing their social, emotional, and psychological needs. To be able to gain cooperation from
such a child as Sheila, parents or adults must learn to be patience. Having greater empathy,
controlling impulsive behavior, building positive relationships, and having greater resilience
towards the children is also advised (Cherry, 2018). Taking time to explain things repeatedly and
spending more time with the children would tend to foster cooperation and improve learning
capabilities. It is also advisable to encourage learning through verbal motivation as well as
tokens of appreciation for good work done (Cross & Cross, 2017).
According to Çelik & Ergün (2016), encouraging such children as Sheila would make
them feel industrious and would soon develop competence in areas that they are best at. Starting
to give children in this stage some limited freedom is largely encouraged so that they can also try


and figure out things from each other. In the end, a sense of inferiority will be mitigated when
children feel that they have developed some skills and are appreciated as industrious.
In conclusion, Erikson’s psychosocial development outlines different developmental
needs for children as they grow up from a social, emotional, and psychological perspective.
People tend to experience conflict in different stages and a strike of balance between success and
failure is determined by the way each stage is handled. Children in the Industry vs. Inferiority
stage tend to develop a sense of pride in what they do. It is at this stage that competence and
skills are developed, and the level of encouragement from cater takers determine whether they
will end up feeling industrious or inferior.


Çelik, B., & Ergün, E. (2016). An integrated approach of Erikson’s psychosocial theory and
adlerian counseling. The International Journal of Human and Behavioral Science, 2(1),
Cherry, K. (2018). Erik erikson’s stages of psychosocial development. Retrieved Juny, 5, 2018.
Cross, T. L., & Cross, J. R. (2017). Maximizing potential: A school-based conception of
psychosocial development. High Ability Studies, 28(1), 43-58.
Knight, Z. G. (2017). A proposed model of psychodynamic psychotherapy linked to Erik
Erikson’s eight stages of psychosocial development. Clinical psychology &
psychotherapy, 24(5), 1047-1058.

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