Describe the stages of personal, social and emotional development of children from birth to 7 years

Qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: Unit 3.12: Promote the personal, social and emotional development of children
Learning outcome: Understand personal, social and emotional development of children
Assessment criteria: Describe the stages of personal, social and emotional development of children from birth to 7 years


The development of a child over their first seven years of life is an extraordinary journey. From the moment a baby enters into this world, they are on the path toward learning how to be part of society. It is essential to understand the stages that children go through in terms of personal, social, and emotional development during this time period. To gain a better understanding of this process, let’s take a look at the various stages children go through from birth to seven years old.

First Stage: Birth to 18 Months Old

During this stage, babies begin to process information about themselves and their environment. At first, infants rely completely on adults for care and guidance as they make sense of their surroundings. Babies learn basic skills such as reaching, grabbing objects, and crawling during this period. They also start forming relationships with others and learn trust by responding positively to those who care for them regularly.


Second Stage: 18 Months to 3 Years Old

In this stage, toddlers are able to interact more with their environment and explore it using all five senses. They become increasingly independent in terms of moving around on their own and can express themselves more clearly through language. As toddlers become more aware of their emotions during this stage, they may show signs of frustration or anger when things don’t go their way or when they feel overwhelmed. This is an important time for parents or caregivers as they must provide consistency and predictability so that toddlers can feel secure in their environment.

Third Stage: 3 Years Old to 7 Years Old

During these years children become even more independent as they learn how to understand other people’s feelings and think about things logically instead of emotionally. By 6-7 years old most children will have developed self-control over their emotions and be able to form meaningful relationships with peers. At the same time they are becoming better problem solvers by understanding abstract concepts like cause-and-effect relationships between actions and outcomes.



Knowing what kind of personal, social, and emotional development takes place during early childhood is essential for parents or caregivers who want to ensure that their children are growing up healthy mentally as well as physically. By understanding each stage in detail you can provide your child with the support they need both emotionally and intellectually while also fostering independence at each step along the way. Helping your child develop into a confident adult starts by understanding where it all began – from birth until age seven!

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