Childhood Development Case Study


In 1993, Davis described a case study as a story that signifies real, contextualized, and multifaceted circumstances that comprise dilemmas, conflicts, or problems without clear solutions. Child development theory refers to a fact-based ideas that clearly explain how children grow and change in the childhood stage (Dunn, 2020). The theories focus on numerous parts of development including social, emotional, and cognitive growth. This case study article will base arguments on two main development theories in Siyasanda’s childhood growth: social learning and attachment theories.

Social Learning Development Theory

Theories provide an outline through which a person understands aspects of the development procedure, and how people change as well as grow in childhood. Social-emotional growth comprises the experience, expression, and organization of the child’s feelings and the capability to create positive and pleasing relations with other children (Jeong, et al. 2021). Siyasanda is an academically average student stressed to choose which career to follow because the girl cannot pursue tertiary education. The girl is a member of a communal connected group in the school but never attends any of the social functions. When Siyasanda joined high school, the kid concentrated much on academics because the girl knew that the mother could not help with school homework. This made Siyasanda struggle in making new friends at school because the girl spent very little time socializing with schoolmates. The girl finds difficulties in self-explaining without describing the personal conditions.

Attachment Development Theory

This refers to a deep and emotional bond that forms between two or more people, especially a child and a parent. This is important for safety, stress regulation, adaptability, and resilience. Siyasanda is a 17-year-old girl at Ithembu High school (Rivas, et al.,2019). The girl did not enjoy attachment to her parents at a tender age. Siyasanda’s father was the breadwinner but unfortunately died when the child was only a year old in a tragic mining accident which led to the girl’s mother Boniswa taking full responsibility.

The girl was raised singlehandedly by the mother who had to be a nanny for the Humphreys in Sandton, Johannesburg. The child’s mother used to leave the house every morning at 4:30 am and come back home during late hours because the employers could not accommodate the woman (Winnicott, 2018). Boniswa’s duties at the Humphreys included cleaning the house and taking care of the employer’s children. Siyasanda’s mother had to prepare the children and take the kids to school while Siyasanda was left at home and taken care of by a grandmother who had three other grandchildren to take care of. Boniswa has worked for the Humphreys for eleven years now to try and make the ends meet in raising Siyasanda.

Siyasanda faced so many challenges during earlier development stages such as mockery. When the girl was two and half years old could not frequently go to the bathroom on time, which made the girl wet the underwear, leading to her cousins laughing at the young girl (Jeong, et al.,2021). This may have long-term consequences for the child such as lowered self-esteem where the kid can feel worthless or valueless to other people. The kid may finally get involved in drug abuse, and alcoholism to avoid critical thinking. Mockery may also lead to loneliness because one may feel unfit in society. The child may grow in repressed anger and frustration leading to a loss of confidence to perform some tasks in the future and feel like a failure in all activities. The kid may lose trust in everyone and may grow up insulting, bullying, or belittling other children in the future. Parents and caretakers should take an initiative to ensure that children are free from bullying and mockery.

Emotional effects whereby the girl was affected emotionally by the death of the father. In the study, the girl could cry often leading the mother to cry frequently, being unhappy, and always staring at the windows remembering the girl’s father (Rivas, et al.,2019). Boniswa says that bringing up Siyasanda was not an easy task. This might have long-term effects such as brain damage in children whereby the brain will not develop fully. Brain damage has various effects such as decreased balance as well as synchronization, muscle feebleness, and muscle coordination issues that could lead to slurred speech, and disturb the child’s capability to eat and control saliva. This can cause vision and hearing impairment, fatigue, dizziness, sleep issues, and severe headaches in adulthood. Children deserve to be protected from emotional damage for good growth and health.

The girl also faced challenges like a lack of full parenting. The kid was left with a grandmother who used to do everything a child needs from a parent. As young as the old of one year, the girl’s father died leading to the kid being raised by a single mother hence missing the fatherly love (Winnicott, 2018). Sayasanda did not enjoy motherly love because the mother left the house at 4:30 am for work probably when the girl was asleep and came back home very late at night when she was still asleep. At school, the girl had to concentrate on schoolwork because the kid was sure that the mother could not help in doing the school homework.

The mother could take care of the employer’s children but could not get time to parent Siyasanda. Lack of good parenting may have long-term effects on children such as poor performance at school, depression, and stress (Kagan, et al., 2018). The child may grow up hating the parents in claims of negligence or lack of parental love. When the child grows into an adult and bears children may be ignorant about bringing up the offspring in the correct manner because the kid was not brought up with good parental care. Every kid needs to be brought up fully by parents to strengthen the bond and improve openness.

Social learning childhood and attachment childhood development differ as well as share some similarities in a child’s development (Kagan, et al., 2018). Attachment theory argues that during the early stage of development of a child, the kid is dependent on the primary caregiver while in social learning theory the child will learn from observing other peoples’ behavior. Siyasanda faced difficulties in growing up because the child did not enjoy complete attachment from both parents.

Within the attachment theory, the conduct or attitude of a person individual is impacted by the boldness, support, as well as love provided by the main caregiver only. But in social learning concept, an individual’s acts are prejudiced or reliant on the significances of the performances (Rivas, et al., 2019). Attachment theory is all about human relations, discusses the emotional attachment of individuals, and involves one party that is the primary caregiver while social learning theory involves parties like society, peer group, environment, and caregivers. Siyasanda grew up in an unfit environment where the cousins mocked the girl for underwear wetting and this could lead to low self-esteem. The girl faced challenges in self-explanatory because of a lack of personal confidence.

The theories argue that the environment of the learner greatly affects the performance of a pupil in the various spheres of life. In this case, Siyasanda grew up with the mother after the father’s death. The mommy was busy finding the time and staying with the girl, which made the child grow emotionally affected and always crying at the age of one year (Richter, et al., 2019). Siyasanda could not interact with other children at school and make new friends because the girl could only concentrate on school work to attain better grades because the girl was an academically average student.

Both theories base arguments on the belief that parents should show optimistic support for a child’s good behavior, evidently controlling children by providing significance for negative behaviors, and that criticism of the child can lead to harmful antisocial behaviors. Siyasanda lacked such pieces of advice from the mother because the girl was brought up by a busy grandmother whereby the grannie could not find time for the girl’s total concentration. During Siyasanda’s childhood development, both attachment and social learning childhood development were a big challenge. The two theories go hand in hand in ensuring good childhood development.

Early adulthood is a period of swift individual development when a person experiences main life changes like beginning employment, leaving education and parental home, and parenting. Middle adulthood is the period of the lifecycle between young adulthood and old age (Rivas, et al.,2019). This period may be between 20 to 40, 40 to 65, or 30-75 years depending on different social definitions of the phases, ages, and responsibilities. According to Albert Bandura, social learning theory stresses the importance of keenly observing, modeling, and copying the actions, attitudes, and emotive responses of other people. The theory reflects how both ecological and mental aspects relate to inspiring the education and conduct of a person.

Social learning and attractive development theories discussed in this article argue that during Siyasanda’s early adulthood, the girl will develop the capability to share familiarity, look forward to making new friends and find intimate love. In early adulthood, Siyanda will have to interact and make new friends (Richter, et al., 2019). The child will engage in Long‐term relations that will lead to marriage and children bearing. At Siyatanda’s early adulthood stage, the girl will identify and trace the roots of the main life challenges, recognize patterns not seen during childhood, and finally, break dangerous habits and behaviors.

The theories argue that work and career choices affect friends, child care, radical ethics, job stress, and socioeconomic positions. In early adulthood, the girl will learn that as revenue is vital in both occupational choices and professional endurance, attainment, acknowledgment, gratification, safety, and different encounters are also important (Winnicott, 2018). In the current principles of numerous countries, Siyasanda will notice the importance of involving the spouse in making job selections.

In middle adulthood, the most significant task is to develop an honest worry for the well-being of upcoming generations and to balance both work and family. According to Robert Havighurst Siyasanda will have several responsibilities during middle adulthood (Richter, et al., 2019). Such tasks include accepting and regulating biological changes like menopause and attaining and maintaining fulfillment in a career. The girl will get used to taking care of the aged mother and help teenagers to become responsible grownups. The girl will have to develop leisure time activities that she never enjoyed during childhood, have a good relationship with her spouse, and put all efforts to attain adult societal and public accountability. Most people realize that almost half of one’s lifetime is done at the age of 41-51 years. While some make immediate and severe changes to achieve goals others focus on finding fulfillment in the current progression of one’s life.


In conclusion, child development is a very critical stage that needs total attention and education from parents and guardians. Some theories govern child development and should be put into practice by every person in society (Dunn, 2020). Children have the right to see and interact with the parents every day so establish a strong bond and improve openness. A kid will have enough time to socialize and make new friends at school because the child will be sure that the parent will assist in doing the homework at home. Every parent or caregiver should ensure that every kid is given parental love to avoid long-term issues such as depression, low self-esteem, stress, brain damage, etc.


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