A profile of a School Pupil

Going to school is a big step and a time of change from babyhood. Children become more independent. They enjoy spending time with their peers, who become increasingly important to the child. The child no longer looks like a chubby infant. The baby milk teeth fall out to make way for permanent teeth.

Physical development is to strengthen and improve practical skill. The limbs grow longer and stronger, especially legs. Children become faster and stronger in large physical movements. Children run, balance, hop, jump, climb, swim and dance if given the opportunity. Tiny bones in the hands and wrist grow providing strength and flexibility. Ball skills develop and enjoyment of team games.

Socially, children learn to choose their own friends and enjoy making rules for games. They learn to co-operate together, to share ideas and talents to make play more productive. The child is less egocentric and can appreciate other people's point of view. Between the ages of 5 and 7 school children become fluent in spoken language and increasingly skilled in reading and writing. They use language in sophisticated ways to share information, ask questions, give answers, negotiate and express their feelings. The child is preparing for adult life in society.

There is much to learn. It will be years before the child can think logically of abstract ideas without reference to real objects. The child begins to understand number and letters. They soon learn to calculate mathematical problems by using addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The older school child starts to do calculations in their head. They learn to read and to write. It takes time. The child learns other useful skills; to tell the time, to manage small amounts of money and to enjoy jokes.

School children are creative. They design and make models. Draw realistic pictures and start to show an individual talent. They enjoy music. Singing, dancing, learning to play an instrument. They are keen to join clubs and activities e.g. dance classes, scouts, sport. Each has personal preferences and appitudes. A sensitive adult recognises these individual gifts and nurtures them. Infant school children are amazed by their world and want to know how things work. The child can be very knowledgeable about subjects he or she is interested in. They develop interest in science and technology, especially cause and effect experiments. School children take pride in their achievements and learn to value other people.

    The infant school child:
  • is faster, stronger and more co-ordinated
  • has increased manipulative skill and dexterity
  • learns to co-operate with other children and adults
  • chooses their own friends
  • enjoys team games with rules
  • shows fluent use of language
  • understands number and calculates
  • learns to read and write
  • enjoys creativity and expresses an individual talent
  • develops a fascination to understand the world
  • feels pride in their achievements and values others

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