Child Psychology, Theory and Its Benefits
Psihologu.info – How does a child’s life actually develop from one stage to another? Surely, there was something that influenced him, right? To find out, you can learn about history, theory, basic concepts, understanding child psychology first. This is a broad area of research and covers how a person can change into adulthood.
Child psychology is a science that studies developmental changes in infants, children, and adolescents. This science analyzes the growth and development of children as a whole, starting from physical motor growth and development (movement) to brain development (cognitive) to the formation of a sense of love for others, personality and identity.
Before we discuss further about the science of child psychology and the theory of child development. Well, we first know the understanding of child psychology according to psychologists.
Understanding Child Psychology According to Experts
Broadly, the notion of child psychology is a branch of psychology that studies the behavior and mental functions of children scientifically. Meanwhile, in the understanding found in the book Convention on the Right of the Child, it is stated that this is a science that studies the behavior and mentality of children who are not yet 18 years old.
So, it can be said that child psychology is a branch of science that studies the growth and development and behavior of anyone under the age of 18. Of course, in practice psychologists specialize based on what is learned to provide support to children.
Actually, this one science is a branch of developmental psychology that studies human growth from birth to adulthood. Psychology itself studies how and why humans can change at every stage of their lives.
At first, this psychology developed and started from the stage of age problems, namely children. However, the stage of its development itself can be said to have quite a long history. The early history of child psychology was influenced by the opinions of ancient experts who had different thoughts.
Every opinion that is raised will definitely get a contradiction. From the contradictions that arise, it can give birth to new understandings or opinions that bring this psychology to be more actual and systematic to this day. For its history, it is actually divided into three periods. The first is an early interest in studying child development.
Plato is one of the philosophers who played an important role in this and he also revealed that there is a difference between genetics and heredity. Then, in the 17th century, John Locke put forward experience and education which are the initial determining factors in child development.
This ability is recognized as having an important role in the psyche of a child until he grows up. They express a view of childhood that is full of speculative because there is no scientific evidence as well as research and observation.
However, with this comes the assumption to study the development of children and their lives as well as the psychological development of children. This also only started to be done in the 18th century although the scientific review was still not satisfactory at that time.
Theory of Child Development in Child Psychology
1. Child Psychology in Piaget’s Theory
The first theory about the developmental period of children is Piaget’s theory. Jean Piaget himself is a clinical psychologist from Switzerland and is best known for his work in studying further understanding of child development. Based on his research, he concluded that children develop at different stages.
This results in children who develop at a more advanced stage unable to understand what the child experienced before. In addition, he also said that children form mental perceptions of the world and feel that children’s cognitive development goes through various biological stages.
This stage is also carried out by interacting with the surrounding environment. In this theory, he predicts that children all over the world will inevitably go through all the same stages in the same order in any age group without exception even though he doesn’t really take into account the differences in the environment in which the child is raised.
2. Child Psychology in Vygotsky’s Theory
This is different from the theory put forward by Lev Semyonovich Vygotsky, a psychologist from the Soviet Union. He revealed that adults and the role of peers play a much more important role in the child’s growth and development process.
He also said that children’s growth and development is first carried out through social interactions between children and then moves to the individual level where they take meaning from what they learn.
In addition, he also sees children more as students who learn through a social environment where children are big and tall. It is also influenced by other members of the environment and affects the needs and abilities of the child.
Children in the Perspective of the World of Psychology
Then, what about the perspective of the world with children? Because child psychology is very broad, to try to answer this question, of course there must be research and psychology practitioners who examine child growth and development into more specific areas. Broadly speaking, this tends to map child development into categories of physical development.
In addition, also on cognitive development and social emotional development. Child psychologists try to understand various aspects of a child’s growth including how a child thinks about learning, interacting and responding emotionally to people or objects around him.
Likewise with friends, understanding emotions and how children can develop their personality, behavior and skills. You have to remember that a child’s growth and development is marked by certain stages. This stage is also marked by the development of their abilities.
For example, children can crawl, walk, talk and so on. This is a common thing that most children can achieve at a certain age. It is also interesting to explain how children can reach this stage and how an individual, social and cultural can determine a child’s growth and development.
The Process of Applying Child Psychology
Then, how to apply this knowledge in children’s daily lives? You must remember that this science is not just a theory or an approach to explain how children grow and develop. It is also useful for the real world and its application can help children in their lives. For implementation, it can be as follows:
1. Child Psychology in Educational Psychology
The world of education is very close to children. For the process of applying psychology to children, educational psychology must also be applied. This educational psychology works with children who find it difficult to learn, understand or communicate with each other or are considered difficult to behave.
Educational psychologists will usually work in a school environment and interact with teachers, students’ families and also interact with schools to help children who have certain educational difficulties. This one science is actually more focused on the teaching and learning process of children in the world of education.
The main focus itself is on all aspects of the learning process itself and its supporting aspects consisting of cognitive and behavioral aspects. By studying these two aspects, researchers can understand individual differences in intelligence, cognitive development, influence, motivation, self-control and so on.
In addition, educational psychology also involves learning about memory, process concepts and individual differences through cognitive psychology in conceptualizing new strategies for human learning and teaching. It builds on the theory of operator conditioning, functionalism, structuralism, constructive, humanist, gestalt and information processing.
2. Child Psychology in Clinical Psychology
Next is the application in clinical psychology. Clinical psychology itself studies, observes and helps various kinds of biological, psychological and social problems of children in their lives. To do this, a psychologist must conduct various observations individually first to find out the problem.
Furthermore, psychologists must also be active in supporting children to deal with the difficulties they face and create a program to prevent and prevent children’s suffering. By understanding how children at a certain age perform a task, clinical psychologists will be able to identify disorders in their development.
In addition, although there are differences between educational psychology and clinical psychology, but basically both have something in common, namely they often use diagnosis to identify children who have a disorder in their development. For example, autism, ADHD and other disorders that are often experienced by children.
Benefits of Psychology for Children
There are many benefits to be had by studying psychology for this child. The first is being able to study the developmental psychology of students so that you can find out whether the behavior shown by students is in accordance with the age or level of development it should be.
Another benefit that can be obtained is that you can find out how far the development of abilities possessed by students with learning methods that have been applied so that they can be used as evaluation material and useful for making changes if needed.
Another benefit that can be obtained is for lesson planning in the teaching and learning process by determining which method is better for the needs of students. Another benefit that can be obtained is as a tool to measure and explain changes in both student and social behavior or the development of learning abilities.
With this, you can also help students, educators and parents to have certain expectations because they are monitored from the overall development of students. Obviously, this can help parents and educators to arrange appropriate tutoring taking into account the child’s abilities as well.
In addition, he can also help educators to anticipate or prevent disturbances during the teaching and learning process because of the level of ability and difficulties faced by students in learning. It is also able to help solve problems if there are obstacles during the learning process.
Most certainly, this existence can also be used to build good communication between students and educators so as to create a conducive learning atmosphere and help students control and respond to their behavior. It can also maximize the utilization of the school environment for better learning.
The existence of this psychology can also minimize the occurrence of student deviations both in terms of learning, behaving capable of interacting with other people in their environment. In addition, he can also help students to understand what he wants and how he evaluates himself and determines steps.
Studying psychology in children is very helpful in knowing how children grow and develop, their developmental stages and problems. In the end, this can help you in applying it in the real world, either in education or in the clinic so that you can find out what is the problem with the child himself.