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Human Growth and Development: Physical Changes, Cognitive Changes (Essay Sample)


Part A
Consider the lifespan development process and describe the following changes
in the infant from content supported in your text.
1. Physical changes
2. Cognitive changes
3. Nutritional needs/changes
4. Sensory changes
Part B
Provide an explanation of the nature/nurture controversy as it pertains to each of the following.
1. Prenatal Development
2. Labor
3. Birth
4. Birth Complications
5. Development of the Competent Newborn


Human growth and development
Human Growth and Development
Physical Changes
As an infant grows from the time they are born, there are certain changes that take place in their body. Different types of changes will take place and one of them is associated with the physical growth of the infant. This simply refers to the biological changes that the children go through as they age (Medlineplus, 2018). The changes start at the head and then they move to the rest of the body. By the time the infant is at two months, they are able to turn and lift their head as they lay on their backs. At this stage their hands are fisted while their arms are flexed (Medlineplus, 2018). The infant will show some primitive reflexes such as Babinski reflex which is associated with fanning toes outwards if the sole of the foot is flexed (Medlineplus, 2018). When there are sudden movements or loud sounds the infant will show startle reflex or Moro reflex, where they extends their arms then bends them and pulls them towards their body. They are also able to do the Palmar grip, where they grip your finger in their hand. They also do the Plantar grasp which involves extending their toes and the forefoot (Medlineplus, 2018). Between three to four months; in reference to their eyes, their muscles have developed to allow tracking of objects. The eyes are better developed to distinguish between different colors. At this point the neck muscles are better developed to sit with support. By six months their backs are strong to sit alone for a brief moment. By nine months, the infant can walk with their hand held and can stand while holding onto furniture. At twelve months, the infant has developed leg muscle strength to stand and walk on their own but briefly (Medlineplus, 2018).
Cognitive Changes
Cognitive development are changes that come with the ability of the infant to learn and even remember; as such they are associated with the brain. Between the ages of one to two months the infant will show interest in new objects, taking longer gazes on complex objects, as if trying to learn more about the world around them (Medlineplus, 2018). By the age of three they show anticipation for coming events such as when laid back and happy for a diaper change. At the age of four months, they show recognition of the sensory abilities such as taste, feel and hear. At the age of 9, they are able tell familiar people from their memory. This is an ability that is also referred to as object permanence. At the turn of twelve months, they show abilities in imitation and the entry into the discovery stage where they search drawers and cabinets among others areas of interest. They show a personality, with curiosity and even shows various emotions (Medlineplus, 2018).
Nutritional Changes and Needs

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