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 following:

  1. Describe the different physical characteristics/findings within the school-aged child. Explain how you would modify assessment techniques to match the age and developmental stage of this child.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.

You are required to cite a minimum of three peer-reviewed sources to complete this assignment. Sources must be published within the last 5 years, appropriate for the assignment criteria, and relevant to nursing practice.

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Developmental Assessment and the School-Aged Child-Sample Solution

Child development assessment entails the determination of the functioning of a child based on various aspects like cognitive, behavioral, motor, sensory, and communication abilities. Bildiren (2018) explains that it helps identify potential developmental problems and appropriate interventions. The paper explores the developmental needs of children aged 5-12, focusing on the typical developmental stages of 6-year-old children based on Piaget’s Theory of development. (Developmental Assessment Essay Example)

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Physical Characteristics of School-Aged Children between 5-12

Children between 5-12 years exhibit various physical characteristics as they transition from preschool to puberty (Bildiren, 2018). For instance, a 6-year-old can handle tools skillfully, such as riding bikes. Besides, they grow slowly but steadily, based on height and body weight. Additionally, they experience challenges controlling smaller muscles than larger ones (Lobelo et al., 2020). They can also snap their fingers and whistle successfully. Therefore, when assessing such a child, the pediatrician can modify the assessment technique by reading the standardized test questions to the child and writing down answers on their behalf. They can also utilize observation-based assessment methods to construct an assessment of the individual child sensitively. It enables the pediatrician to collect child-specific characteristics which may not be captured in standard testing techniques.(Developmental Assessment Essay Example)

Typical Developmental Stages of Children Aged 6

Alex is a 6-year-old child who is physically active and social. He prefers playing with other children, though he is choosy in selecting playmates and gets frustrated when they don’t want to play with him. Alex is also talkative, can count from 1-10, and can accurately identify what day it is. Notably, children the same age as Alex should be physically active, show skillful motor coordination like jumping a rope and perform most activities like repeatedly riding a bike until they master it (Martínez, Camacho & Madrona, 2018). Also, they should exhibit curiosity, understand themselves and be sensitive to other people’s emotions. Moreover, they should have tricky emotions, like getting moody easily when upset. They should also be able to form friendships and interact well with others, especially around their families.

Developmental Assessment of the Child using Piaget’s Developmental Theory

Piaget’s Theory of development posits that children’s behavior changes based on the development of their thinking from one stage to the next. The theorist explains that children construct knowledge continuously as they encounter new ideas, leading to long-term changes. According to Carpendale, Lewis, and Müller (2019), Piaget suggested four stages of development: sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete operational, and formal operational. Alex falls under the preoperational stage (2-7 years), where children are expected to utilize mental abstractions, recognize viewpoints and perspectives, and should perform dramatic play reflecting real-life experiences. In this case, when assessing the child, the pediatrician should request the input of the child’s parent based on aspects like the child’s social interaction and physical activity. Besides, the pediatrician can create imaginative scenarios matching the assessment criteria to determine the child’s metacognition, such as narrating a story and asking the child to recount it (Carpendale, Lewis & Müller, 2019). Additionally, the child can be given at least a series of three commands to follow to determine their cognitive ability.(Developmental Assessment Essay Example)

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Notably, the pediatrician can explain the assessments using simple and plain language, providing diagrammatic illustrations, and asking the child questions. In addition, they can attract the child’s attention and cooperation by asking open-ended questions and allowing the child to assume control of the process (Lobelo et al., 2020). This can instill confidence in them, making it easy to display their true character and skills. Praising them for cooperating and offering suggestions for the questions is also essential. Finally, potential assessment results can include the excellent memory to accurately recount a narrated story, social skills like the ability to interact and make friends, and good motor coordination.(Developmental Assessment Essay Example)

The potential findings show that the child’s cognitive, physical, and behavioral development reflect those of peers of the same age. For example, Alex exhibits proficient motor skills, curiosity, can form friendships, and is active. The pediatrician can apply Piaget’s Theory to assess the child’s development by creating imaginative stories and asking the child to recount them. It is also necessary to use simple-to-understand language when explaining the assessment. Henceforth, children should be subjected to regular developmental assessments to identify their problems and devise strategies to help them improve.(Developmental Assessment Essay Example)

Developmental Assessment Essay Example


Bildiren, A. (2018). Developmental characteristics of gifted children aged 0–6 years: parental observations. Early Child Development and Care188(8), 997–1011.

Carpendale, J. I., Lewis, C., & Müller, U. (2019). Piaget’s Theory. The Encyclopedia of Child and Adolescent Development, 1-11.

Lobelo, F., Muth, N. D., Hanson, S., Nemeth, B. A., LaBella, C. R., Brooks, M. A., … & Walsh, S. M. (2020). Physical activity assessment and counseling in pediatric clinical settings. Pediatrics145(3).

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Martínez, S. J., Camacho, X. G., & Madrona, P. G. (2018). Development of the checklist of psychomotor activities for 5-to 6-year-old children. Perceptual and motor skills125(6), 1070-1092.

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