All educational institutions, regardless of location or type will have students with varying rates of physical, social and emotional, intellectual ability, communication and speech development, who will have diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds. In almost all educational institutions, students will come from diverse backgrounds and have varied individual needs. This diversity emerges from language, gender and religion, culture, learning styles, ability and disability, economic status, student interests and motivation. All of which will need to be taken into consideration by the teachers of today.
In relation to varying rates of physical, social and emotional, intellectual and communication and speech, many theories have been established over time relating to the development of these areas. For example, one of the prominent theorists in the area of psycho-social development is Eric Erikson, who believes that the ego of an individual develops as it successfully resolves crises that are distinctly social in nature. These involve establishing a sense of trust in others, developing a sense of identity in society, and helping the next generation prepare for the future. Erikson places emphasis on the adolescent period, noting that it is a crucial stage for developing a person’s identity.
Erikson’s graph of Developmental stages:
||Basic trust vs. mistrust
||Can I trust the world?
||Autonomy vs. shame and doubt
||Is it okay to be me?
||Toilet training, clothing themselves
||Initiative vs. guilt
||Is it okay for me to do, move, and act?
||Exploring, using tools or making art
||Industry vs. inferiority
||Can I make it in the world of people and things?
||Identity vs. role confusion
||Peers, role model
||Who am I? Who can I be?
||Intimacy vs. isolation
||Can I love?
||Generativity vs. stagnation
||Can I make my life count?
||Ego integrity vs. despair
||Mankind, my kind
||Is it okay to have been me?
||Reflection on life
Furthermore, the following document provides a good overview in relation to children’s development including principles of development stages, sequences of development, physical, emotional, social, intellectual, communication and speech development, maturation factors affecting growth and development and understanding how to observe these developments.
Understanding Children’s Development (PDF)
Being primarily involved in Physical education and health education, the physical development of individual students play a crucial part in which type of activities and skill progressions can be used for each age group. There will obviously be differences in development within a class and lessons will have to be adjusted to suit these needs. Giving every student multiple opportunities to respond individually within a lesson can not only increase skill progression and learning, but also confidence.
In relation to student diversity, all students are entitled to participate and learn about health and physical education including those with disabilities and those from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds. The Australian Curriculum (ACARA) is committed to developing a high-quality curriculum for all Australian students, one that promotes excellence and equity in education.