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Signature Assignment #1

Once a child reaches about 4 or 5, it seems like that is the age where parents start
registering their children into different types of sports. When a child becomes a player in a sport,
parents seem to get over involved in their experience by encouraging every goal. Depending on
the parent, they could potentially over emphasize the importance of the scoreboard rather than
what it really means to be on a team. Sports can encourage children to exercise, reduce their
amount of screen time, and help them learn.
Given the importance of physical activity for health and learning, many
developmentalists are troubled when indoor activities, such as homework and television, crowd
out active play (Berger, 2019, p. 235). Sports are encouraged for children because they give
children a chance to enjoy a game that promotes health and activity in a fun manner that also
includes their friends. At this point, a child only knows that they are playing with their
teammates, it’s the adults that shine light on the score and therefore tells the children who the
“winners” and “losers” are.
Sports should not be about who wins or who loses, it should be about how it benefits the
children both mentally and physically. Different types of sporting games help provide children
with fun as well benefits of physical activities, especially games with rules that the children can
now follow. Exercise advances physical, emotional, and mental health, as well as learning in
school (Berger, 2019, p. 235). When a child is engaged in sports, they learn how to play with
others and to follow the rules.
When competition is in play, it seems to reveal the worst in certain people. Some display
their competitiveness by yelling or getting angry when their team is “losing”. There is a lot of
yelling along the sidelines, which is not always bad. Sometimes it is parents encouraging their
children to hustle, but sometimes it could be more negative if a child misses a kick or missed a
catch. Physical play improves reaction time, which is how long it takes to respond to a stimulus,
as well as maturation during middle childhood. Reaction time is reduced every year of
childhood. Skills at games, from scoring on a video game to swinging at a pitch, to kicking a
soccer ball toward a teammate, timing on all of these improve every year from age 6 to 11,
depending partly on practice (Berger, 2019, p. 237). Knowing this, children shouldn’t feel
discouraged by missing something when they are playing. Instead, we need to focus on honing
their skills and letting them know it’s okay to make mistakes because they are just now learning
the sport. They will get better with time and practice.
Competition is not always bad. It can help motivate children to do their best during
practices and games. Competing with each other can be fun and show each child what they are
fully capable of. It’s only when competition starts shining a negative light that it could start
affecting the children. There is a belief that children learn by doing. Embodied cognition is the
idea that thinking is connected to body movement. Playing with peers, screen time, dinner with
families, neighborhood play, every experience from birth on teaches a child, according to
Vygotsky (Berger, 2019, p. 244). It’s important to teach children how to work together as a team
to reach a common goal and not make them feel punished for making a mistake or not winning.
When starting children in sports game, the adults should use competition as a tool to
motivate the children to try their best. At a young age, playing the game and practicing is all
about building skills.There should be an understanding that winning is not what the game is
about. It’s about being healthy, active, and having fun.
Reflection

In the middle childhood essay from Unit 4, I learned about how the child develops during
this time and the importance of proper nutrition and exercise can benefit the child. This essay is
about how playing sports at this age can help children learn how to follow rules and play well
with others as well as motivate the children to do their best, if done correctly. As a mom with a
son who is in middle childhood and just getting into sports, it was a great insight for me to see
how sports can greatly benefit my child as he develops, but also how a healthy dose of
competition can be good.
Signature Assignment #2

In a perfect world, mothers are able to stay with their children every day, watch them
grow, and cherish the fleeting memories that make up parenthood. However, not every family is
the same and sometimes parents need extra help watching their children. Trusting another adult
to care for your child can be challenging when concerning the safety of your child, if the
schedule will affect your child, or if being away from your child so much will hinder your
relationship.
Every family houses different types of childcare that is unique to their situation. Some
families have grandmothers or fathers to care for their child while the mother works, but
nonrelative child care has increased in western cultures since the 1980’s (Berger, 2019, p. 147).
There seems to be a lot of criticism behind whether day-care will harm or benefit your child.
However, some of these criticisms go back about 25 years when caregivers knew less about
about infant development. Not to say that all child care services are of great quality,
unfortunately there are still poor-quality day-care’s where too many children are put to a group
which can cause conflicts with their children and the teachers (Berger, 2019, p. 150).
With a variety of childcare options to choose from, a high quality care center is most
beneficial for your child. A good-quality day-care centers their structures according to what is
best for the children which includes letting the infants have regular, restful naps and can benefit
the cognitive skills of children with no evidence of emotional harm, especially when followed by
good preschool care (Berger, 2019, p. 150).
Children are often more content when they have a regular daily schedule. Even if the
parent chooses child care services to help, as long as it is consistent it shouldn’t pose a threat on
the child. Attachment to one or several familiar caregivers is essential whether they are mothers,
close relatives, or regular day-care providers, but frequent changes and instability are
problematic (Berger, 2019, p. 147). If your child is cared for by a multitude of people such as
neighbors, grandmothers, and day-care centers, this kind of unstable caring can be harmful and
by age 3 the child can become more aggressive compared to those with a more stable care
environment (Berger, 2019, p. 147).
There is an instant bond between a mother and her child going back before the baby is
even born. Some mothers feel guilty for opting their child into a child care center, but some
mothers are welcoming to the opportunity to continue their profession (Berger, 2019, p. 148). In
the United States, paid maternal leave is uncommon and leaves about 58 percent of mothers with
infants under 1 year of age required to return back to work (Berger, 2019, p. 147). Most mother’s
fear that being separated from their child could negatively affect their relationship, but most
analyses find that secure attachment to a mother was just as common for infants in a child care
center as it is for infants cared for at home (Berger, 2019, p. 148).
It’s a tough decision to make when it comes to having someone else care for your child.
As long as the child care service is providing your family with high quality child care that is
centered around the safety and well being of your child and helps keep your child’s schedule
consistent, it can positively impact your child as they grow.
Reflection

In the early childhood essay from Unit 3, I learned about the benefits of child care
and that as long as the child has a consistent schedule, entering your child into child
care services will not hinder their development or break the bond the child has with
their mother. As a mom who has two children and goes to school full-time, I often
depend on my parents to help me with my children and related this unit when it talked
about how most mothers feel guilty for needing child care services or the fear of not
creating a strong bond with their kids.