Child psychology focuses on the growth of children encompassing their physical, mental, social, and emotional development. It is one of the crucial branches of psychology and, what is more, it is the most challenging one. Since time immemorial, people had always thought that children are just ‘small adults’ with the same behavioral patterns, feelings, and thoughts, though less influenced by the social environment. Needless to say, I also had such a belief until I got to study the peculiarities of child psychology. Rather than being smaller adults, I came to realize that children have completely different patterns of thought production as compared to adults. Children’s growth is not only guided from within themselves but also by the society, cultural practices, and the socioeconomic environment. Therefore, child psychology is more complex, wide, and deep than previously thought. Understanding what makes the child a child, not a small adult, is no easy task in the first place. However, this class opened my mind on how to understand them well.
Adults, well, most of them, have the capacity to make decisions based on their intuition and experience. More often than not, they make these decisions on their own. On the other hand, children do not have that much capacity. As they grow from infants to teens, they undergo a series of stages which would play a major role in shaping their physical, emotional, social, and intellectual aspects in life. Therefore, having learnt this, I am better prepared in handling children. I have learnt that they need a lot of encouragement and adequate support and that they should not be denied the activities that enable them to learn important developmental tasks. Children learn by observing the people around them. This simply means that I have to exert a purely positive influence in their development. This can only be achieved if I provide a moral support that they need and if I develop myself spiritually and morally so that they could copy the best possible traits. However, children should also be given the opportunity to learn some aspects on their own.
Child psychology is very important yet very complex due to the constant environmental and sociological changes. This simply means that child psychology learning is changing to accommodate these inevitable changes. For instance, children from yester years had the opportunity and a favorable environment to play and socialize freely. However, the scenario has changed nowadays due to a number of technological, sociological, and economic changes. However, children should not be denied the opportunity to grow in a child-friendly environment. Therefore, I am committed to working hand-in-hand with kindergartens, children homes, and other child institutions in helping children grow. Children will only be understood by interacting with them. Thus, visiting such institutions frequently will provide me with a better and practical understanding of child psychology. Additionally, apart from just understanding them, I will apply what I learn. Playing with them, encouraging them, and socializing with them will not only help them develop ideally but will also be beneficial to me in terms of physical health and moral behavior.
There are many children advocacy organizations in the world today. Each organization has a different purpose, although all of them share a mutual goal to improve the general well-being of children. However, UNICEF’s mission to advocate for children’s rights, to enable them have access to basic needs, and to provide a platform for them to realize their full potential is the most comprehensive, and it really appeals to me. Working with such an international organization can enable me enhance my understanding of child psychology from different parts of the world. This is because of the socio-cultural differences that are apparent in the continents. This opportunity would also enable me to be on the front line in advocating children so that we could have a better society and, in global terms, a better world. Most importantly, it will enable me to improve the lives of many children hence a generation.