Human development is a continuous process and begins very early in the human life. Every individual, from the time of birth, undergoes physical, behavioural and emotional changes. Similarly, children in the age group of four-to-five, have specific developmental changes and any deviation from them should be checked out with the family doctor.
Recognising Physical Development in Children
For children in the age group of four-to-five there are some normal physical developmental characteristics that a parent needs to know.
• Children in this age group grow at a slower rate than infants and toddlers. Usually their body organs grow faster than the body. This usually gives the preschoolers a rounded-tummy appearance.
• Their height should at least 50 percent of their adult height and the body weight should be 20 percent of the adult body weight by the age of five.
• Most children at this age develop their motor skills and can skip, run and climb.
• Most of trained preschoolers are able to tie their shoelaces, buttons and draw rough but recognizable figures.
• Have an increased lung capacity and develop the tendency to breathe more deeply.
• Most of these children have lost or are in the process of losing their ‘baby look’ as the limbs grow longer.
• Children of this age group will look about the same size — regardless of the gender.
• There is a remarkable increase in the overall physical condition and some resistance to germs and repeated infections is also present.
However, such developing immunity is very subjective among preschoolers and may vary with each of them.
Cognitive Development in Children Aged 4 to 5
• They interrelate with and learn more about their surroundings much better through playful activities rather than being taught or instructed.
• They start to realise their home and family members through exploration and inquisitiveness.
• Begin to show signs of more affection for a particular family member or a caregiver.
• Start to follow and understand basic rules — the first signs of accepting authority.
• Understand and start of follow regular activities like brushing their teeth and washing hands.
Emotional Development in Children Aged 4 to 5
• They do rely on caregivers but don’t need constant physical contact like toddlers.
• They continue to express emotions and begin to return hugs, kisses and respond very physically to people.
• Begin to develop affinity for certain children of their age group — a precursor of their tendency to start recognising preferences and developing relationships.
• Learn to recognize foods that don’t taste good and start to associate with smells of foods they don\’t like.