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Social Development of a Child

In: Social Issues

Submitted By nanaamasiriboe
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Montessori Centre International
Observations – Cover Sheet

(To be used in conjunction with MCI Ethical statement)

Student Name: Nana Ama Siriboe Student Number: 33292 |

Date of Observation: 28th November, 2014 Observation No. 2 |

Observation Technique: Narrative |

Starting Time: 12:00 pm Finishing Time:12:30pm |

No. of Children: 10 in the nursery No. And Role of Adults: 3 ( 2 teachers and myself) |

Letter of permission to observe enclosed: ( Letter of Permission scanned and attached with submitted observation) |

Description of Setting: A Montessori nursery in a residential area in Ridge. |

Immediate Context (Playground, Art Corner etc.): At the School playground equipped with tricycles, swings, slides, climbing frames and other outdoor equipment. |

First Names of Child(ren) observed: Rafferty |

Brief Description of Child (ren) – i.e. gender/age/position in family/first language (if relevant): Boy aged 3years, 8 months (3:8). He is the last of two children. He has an older sister who is seven years old and is in another school nearby. |

Rationale for Observation (if appropriate): |

Aim of Observation: To observe Rafferty’s (3:8) social and emotional development during outdoor play time at the nursery and how relevant play is to his social and emotional development. |

Montessori Centre International ______Ethical Statement

To accompany every piece of course work carried out which involved working with young children and their families.

Any observation should always be in the child’s best interest and contribute to the child’s well-being, and, therefore, particular care must be taken that the observation does not cause distress to the child. Every aspect of the child’s background must be respected and parents/guardians must be included and informed at all times.

Confidentiality * Confidentiality should be assured through the use of non-identifying information. * Use only the child’s first name or a pseudonym; do not name the school or location and do not put specific birth dates. * Staff members or parents must not be identified by name.

Evidence:- |

Measures that need to be taken to ensure each and every child’s privacy and anonymity:

Consent * Explain to interested parties (parents/professional carers, etc.) that the observations are being undertaken for an academic assignment, and will only be seen by the markers/moderators of the coursework. * Parents/guardians/carers have the right to see all observations of their child. * Written consent must be obtained from the child’s parent or guardian. * Students must obtain such consent through the school.

Evidence:- |

Use of Photographs * Adhere to guidelines of the setting regarding the use of photographs. * Only children whose parents have specifically granted consent can be photographed. * Data storage issues must be considered.

Evidence:- |

It is essential to behave in a courteous and unobtrusive manner, and to be sensitive to the needs of the child and the parents and practitioners. Observations must not be intrusive nor disrupt the smooth running of the setting.

Note for Students: - Parents and practitioners must be made aware that you are a student, and, as such, it is not your role to make any conclusive recommendations.

Practitioners will work together with the parents/guardians for the benefit of their child.

Student Name: Nana Ama Siriboe Number: 33292Date: 28th November, 2014Student’s Signature: |

It is time for outdoor play at the nursery. Rafferty (3:8) ran’s straight to where the tricycles are parked. He quickly takes a helmet and puts it on and starts calling out to the rest of the children saying “all aboard, the train is ready to move, hop on and let us go”. He sits on the tricycle and starts racing around the truck. After going around the track three times, he sees Sally (3:4) sitting on the grass and crying. He immediately parks on the side and walks to Sally and puts his hand around her neck and says to her “why are you crying Sally, are you hurt”? Sally shakes her head whiles still crying.

He sits next to Sally on the grass and says to her” tell me what is wrong with you so I help you fix it. He walks over to where I am standing with a grim look on his face and says to me “Sally is sad and I am going to make her feel better”. He ran’s back to where Sally is sitting, still crying and asks her once again what is making her sad. Sally then says to her amidst sobs “I cannot ride my tricycle”. Rafferty then helps her up and says to her “come join me on my tricycle and we can ride together.
He holds Sally’s hand and they walk together to where he had parked the tricycle. Rafferty helps Sally put on her helmet and says to her “we are all set now hop on and let us go. Sally is now all beaming with smiles. After ridding around the track twice, Rafferty sees Mia (3:6) who is standing on the side with a sulky face. He turns to Sally and says to her “look Sally, Mia is sad. He stops the tricycle and goes over to Mia and says to her “why are you sad Mia” She says to him, “I want to ride with you and Sally”. He turns to look at the tricycle and then says to her, “there is room for one more person so you can join us.” It is important to mention that the tricycle has provision for two additional children to stand behind apart from the child who is ridding.

After coming off the tricycle, Rafferty walks over to me and says “I am the hero today, Sally and Mia were sad but I made them happy again” with a big smile on his face. I gave him a pat on his shoulder and said to him “I am very proud of you Rafferty”. He was about to say something to me when he suddenly ran off, shouting as he as running off “hey, hold on I am coming to save you”. I looked across the playground and saw Maelly (3:0) sitting in the sand-pit crying, Rafferty immediately bends over to inquire from Maelly the reason why she was crying. Maelly responds amidst sobs by saying “I cannot find my shoes”. Rafferty immediately takes her hand and says to her “let us go and look for your shoes”. After walking around the playground for about Three minutes, I see both of them jumping for joy and I also see Maelly giving Rafferty a hug and saying “thank you Rafferty for helping me find my shoes”. Just then it is then to go back inside the classroom and Rafferty says to Maelly “let me help you with your shoes so we can go inside quickly”. After helping her with her shoes, they both hold hands and skip together to the classroom. At this juncture, the observation comes to an end-12:30pm.

During my observation period, it was evident that play was important to the holistic development of young children because although the children were outside playing, Rafferty still helped Sally, Mia and Maelly when they needed help. Rafferty acted on his own, nobody had to tell him what to do, “Play is a process that is freely chosen, personally directed and intrinsically motivated (Bruner, in Moyles (1989)).

Play provides children with opportunities to enjoy freedom and exercise choice and control over their actions whilst offering them with opportunities for testing their boundaries (Macleod- Brudenell & Kay, 2008). Rafferty, without any adult interruption saw the need to offer assistance to his friends which he readily did although he was deeply engrossed in playing with his tricycle.

Play offers children a wide range of physical, social and intellectual experiences and it also builds the child’s independence self esteem (MCI, undated a). Through play, children develop respect for each other and this boost their social interactions. This is evident in the way Rafferty interacts with his friends during play, “I will help you look for your shoes, Maelly.”

Play increases the child’s knowledge and understanding and also widens the child’s creativity and capacity to learn. “Children determine and control the content and intent of their play by following their own instincts, ideas and interests in their own way for their own reasons” (Hughes & King, in Macleod- Brudenell & Kay, 2008, p 192). Rafferty himself devised ways of helping out his friends. When Sally was crying saying that she could not ride her tricycle, Rafferty said to her “Come on Sally, we can ride together.”

During play, children go through a lot of analytical and problem solving skills and this can do a lot for them intellectually. The explorations that they go through also promote brain development. They are also able to make sense of the world around them. Children take control such that they avoid being overwhelmed by life (Bruce, 2008). Children are also able to solve problems when they encounter them. Although Rafferty already had Sally behind the tricycle, he knew he had one more spot left, thus he said to Mia, “come and join us, we can all ride together.”

Children also largely develop and improve their language and literacy skills, are able to share ideas with their playmates, and even with adults who may be present at that time. Rafferty comes to me and says “I am the hero today, Sally, Mia, and Maelly were sad but I made them happy again.”

PERSONAL LEARNING During this narrative technique (MCI, undated b), I observed Rafferty and realised that children derive a lot during play. Play has frequently been described as “what children do when they follow their own ideas and interests, in their own way and for their own reasons.” Having time and space to play gives children the opportunity to meet and socialise with their friends, keeping them physically active and giving them the freedom to choose what they want to do. Play has many benefits for children, families and the wider community, as well as improving health and quality of life.

Children’s accesses to good play provision can improve their self awareness, self-esteem, and self-respect, their physical and mental health is also improved and maintained. It also gives them the opportunity to mix with other children, allowing them to increase their confidence through developing new skills. Play also promotes their imagination, independence and creativity and most importantly, offers opportunities for children with all abilities and backgrounds to play together providing opportunities for developing social skills and learning. Children also build resilience through risk taking and challenge, problem solving, and dealing with new situations.

Play provides opportunities for children to learn about their immediate surrounding and the wider community.


Bruce, T. (2006 reprint) Developing Learning in Early Childhood. London: Sage
Macleod-Brudenell, I. & Kay, J. (2008, 2nd Edition) Advanced Early Years. Harlow: Heinemann
Montessori Centre International (MCI) (undated a) Module 2- Child Development London: MCI
Montessori Centre International (MCI) (undated b) Module 3- Observations London: MCI
Moyles, J. (2005, 2nd Edition) The Excellence of Play. Maidenhead: Open University Press

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