How Does the Environment Influence a Child's Growth and Development?

by Eliza Martinez Google

    Many factors play a role in your child's growth and development, including internal and external factors. The condition of a child's environment is an important aspect of how he progresses. Understanding the different aspects of the environment helps you ensure that your child is getting what he needs to grow and develop optimally, as well as helping you recognize a potential problem.

    Nurture

    The way a child is treated by her parents, as well as other caregivers, has an impact on how she grows and develops. Parents who cultivate individuality help their child feel accepted and loved, according to Southern Methodist University. A loving and supportive environment helps children focus on learning and growing instead of having to worry about gaining acceptance and praise. Helping children solve problems and learn new things and spending quality time together are effective ways to nurture children and help them develop.

    Stimulation

    You can't expect your child to develop, particularly in areas of cognition, if you don't expose him to new things. Inadequate learning opportunities are one of the biggest contributors to a disruption in development, according to the World Health Organization. Education.com suggests playing with open-ended toys, dramatic play, arts and crafts, reading and playing games as a way to promote healthy development in young children. As kids get older, continue to encourage a love of reading, play games together and help your child solve problems.

    Nutrition

    Nutritional intake plays a vital role in a child's growth and development, according to the World Health Organization. Lack of proper nutrition can interfere with the maturation of your child's brain and body. Good nutrition should start before a baby is even born and should continue throughout her life. Children need a variety of foods from each food group to ensure that they are getting enough of the nutrients that are vital to growth. This includes calcium, protein, magnesium, carbohydrates and vitamins A, C, D and E. Children who are malnourished are at a disadvantage when it comes to cognitive and physical development because their brains and bodies don't have the nutrition they need to grow.

    Socioeconomic Status

    Children who come from families with adequate finances are more likely to grow and develop to optimal levels, according to the Annual Review of Psychology. Parents who have more money can provide enough food, pay for an education and supply their child with stimulating toys, books and activities. Children who come from the lower economic strata might not get enough nutrition or opportunities to learn, which can interfere negatively with development.

    About the Author

    Eliza Martinez has written for print and online publications. She covers a variety of topics, including parenting, nutrition, mental health, gardening, food and crafts. Martinez holds a master's degree in psychology.

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