Sample Psychology Paper on Development Assessment of School-Aged Children

Development Assessment of School-Aged Children

Development assessment entails the collection of basic data about a child’s growth and development. The vital components of data collected for assessment include language, physical, cognitive, social-emotional development, and approaches to learning. Besides monitoring growth, development evaluation is vital for physicians and caregivers to identify gaps and special needs of children that may require support. Thorough examination provides a basis for determining appropriate interventions to support the special needs of a particular child. Additionally, it allows evaluators to design personalized approaches for individuals of groups of children of the same age to provide care. Parents and guardians of the child are a vital component of the evaluation process; thus, providing grounds for engagement and consensus on child support. Hence, child assessment plays a critical role in determining the developmental level and gaps of children and designing appropriate support measures to support their special development needs. Since different children have distinct needs, varied methods are used to assess them.

Comparing Physical Assessments

Indeed, different children need distinct evaluation approaches given that human development needs vary across different ages. One of the most effective way of assessing children’s development process is observation through interactions with them to note vital signs in their conduct. While the observation through interaction method is applicable for children across all ages, assessors may require modifying the approaches to match the development needs of different children. For example, parents are best placed to provide information of a 5-year old compared to 10-year old children who can explicitly express themselves. Other approaches of child assessment include parent and caregiver ratings, standardized tests, and portfolios (Ensink et al., 2017). During interactions with a 5-year-old child, assessors can read out questions and write answers for them or ask parents to describe certain elements; however, this approach can limit the efficiency of interactions with a ten- or twelve-year-old child. This variation is attributed to the different psychological, emotional, and physical aspects that distinguish ten-year-old from five-year-old minors. ten-year-old children have greater cognitive abilities than five-year-old child, it is important to use approaches that can determine the level of development. For instance, physicians can modify the data collection method to include interactive observation with such a child since they can effectively express themselves through either verbal or written ways.

Typical Development Stages of 1O Years Old Children

Children undergo various development stages. Ryan is a 10-year-old African American boy attending the 4th grade at a neighborhood school. Ten-year-old children are at a stage characterized with social-emotional, physical, and cognitive development. physical growth occurs steadily as puberty approaches. Moreover, at this age, the child typically demonstrate ability to solve problems and be more independent. Boys are between 4 and 5 feet tall and weigh between 65 and 90 pounds (Morin, 2019). At this stage, children can have a growth of about 4 inches annually. Additionally, the child becomes stronger in stamina, balance develops, and coordination improves. Participation in team activities also increases as they enhance ability to perform detailed activities, like painting. When it comes to cognitive development, 10-years old children grow their reading and writing abilities and can speak clearly (Morin, 2019). They can now develop abstract and critical thinking, which manifests in the ability to follow detailed instructions, reason through problems, and plan. At the age of ten years, boys are still attached to the parents although they may begin to form stronger relations with peers.

How to Developmentally Assess the Child

There are various ways of evaluating the development process of children of different ages. For 10-year old children, it is critical to take note of the changing physical and cognitive aspects. During this stage, they begin to become more aware of their physical body and sign of puberty develop on their bodies. Besides, as an assessors, I would critically evaluate the child’s ability to integrate new skills and ability to interact with others and form new relationships. To determine effective developments, children must exhibit competence in reading and writing and possess the capacity to do things on their own. Besides, the nature of relationships a child established with people and things in their environment is a crucial marker of development.

Erickson’s ego-centric theory of development provides insights into a person’s development process. Ryan and other 10–12-year-olds fall in the industry vs. Inferiority stage, also known as latency stage (McLeod, 2018). Erickson posits that this is the final stage of childhood marked with child’s ability to learn and integrate new skills to interact and form relationships with peers. This stage is critical for developing a sense of independence and pride for their capabilities. If supported, children can develop their confidence and foster positive self-esteem (Rubin et al., 2015). However, if not supported, they become frustrated. Besides, children begin to group self-identify relating to contextual conditions and encounters that contribute to shape own perception and self-image.

Assessors can use different approaches to foster cooperation such as encouraging children to continue trying and praising them for the results they attain. Evaluating children and providing feedback and guidance can help children to develop. When children excel in certain tasks, encouraging them can reinforce growth. Praising children for their efforts and efforts can help children to grow emotionally and socially. Besides, it is important for children to learn that failure is part of the growth process. Through written responses, the evaluator can obtain information about his friends, likes, and dislikes, which is critical to note the things that make him feel superior and inferior. The Erikson’s psychological theory is vital to determine what is expected of a child at a particular stage of development. .


Child development assessment is crucial to determine the welfare and progress of children. The assessment process allows caregivers to identify children’s special needs and influence decisions on appropriate support. Besides, it provides an opportunity for collaboration between parents and care providers to support children’s special needs. However, physicians must recognize the changing needs of children with time to modify assessment mechanisms for accurate results. Moreover, physicians must incorporate some theoretical aspects such as Erickson’s development stages to determine what is expected of children of different ages in the assessment process.



Ensink, K., Leroux, A., Normandin, L., Biberdzic, M., & Fonagy, P. (2017). Assessing reflective parenting in interaction with school-aged children. Journal of Personality Assessment99(6), 585-595.

McLeod, S. (2018, February 5). Eric Ericson’s stages of psychosocial development. Simply Psychology.

Morin, A. (2019). Developmental milestones for fourth and fifth graders. Understood.

Rubin, K. H., Bukowski, W. M., & Bowker, J. C. (2015). Children in peer groups. Handbook of Child Psychology and Developmental Science, 1-48.