Child Development Lessons

Families in Crisis


Teaching about families in crisis can be difficult especially when you don’t always know what’s going on in the home lives of your students. However, it is important to discuss because every family, at one time or another, will face one or more at some point in their lives. No one is immune. This lesson and video case study is just one of many that could be used in the classroom. I like it because it is a way for students to apply all of the information learned about families as well as explore some crisis themes in more depth.

To Eat or Not to Eat? Foods & Pregnancy


Many equate being pregnant with being able to eat “whatever” you want. After all, you are eating for two! However, there are many foods that are off limits during pregnancy. This unique lesson engages students by having them individually examine an assigned food to ascertain whether it should be eaten or avoided during pregnancy. With their newly acquired knowledge, they create a mini-poster using technology for use in a gallery walk activity. From there, t-charts are created and a group discussion ensues as to the correct placement of each food. “To eat or not to eat? That is the question.” Give it a try and see if your students aren’t highly engaged as they discover the answers to this infamous question.

Living in Poverty Lesson & Activities

unemployed man

While listening to the news on the radio, it was announced that in Pennsylvania 1 in every 5 children lives below the poverty level. I’m sure this number varies from one state to the next but I thought it to be a rather scary statistic. This lesson and the included activities has students learning about poverty, what causes it, and an engaging simulation to see how easy it could be for some to live in poverty no matter how hard they try to avoid it.

Newborn How-to Stations Using QR Codes


Many teachers are encouraged to incorporate various forms of technology into their lesson plans. QR Codes (Quick Response Codes) are everywhere…magazines, promotions, informational brochures, and even advertisements, so why not make them part of your classroom? QR Codes are like bar codes linked to hidden messages, websites or videos. I’ve been wanting to use these for awhile, but just didn’t know what I wanted to do with them. As I was updating my Child Development curriculum and lesson plans, I figured out the perfect way to use them in my Newborn Care unit. Read below to see how I am using QR Codes within this lesson/activity. Please share how you use QR Codes in your class room in the comment section below or shoot me an email with your attachments at

P.I.E.S: The Areas of Development


For anyone that is not familiar with the acronym PIES, it stand for the areas of development. P=Physical, I=Intellectual, E=Emotional and S=Social. Just as addition,subtraction, multiplication and division are the foundation for math and the alphabet is the foundation for reading, the PIES are the framework for child development. A child’s development is like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle…each piece is important to the whole puzzle just as each area of development is important to the whole child. When talking about the development of children, it is difficult to discuss the concepts that relate to the whole child without knowledge of the basics. Knowing the PIES helps students to understand the various ways that children grow and develop.

Child Development Theorists Acrostic Poem & Demonstration Activity


Since child development is based on the theories developed by the expert psychologists and their research, I like to give Child.Dev.Theoristsmy students an overview of them. Later on in the year, as I go over specific concepts like intellectual or social development, my students at least have a knowledgeable base of this information from which they can build upon. This interactive lesson has students putting their writing, oral presentation skills and creativity to work right away! As always, you can make this lesson your own by pre-selecting the theorists and resources as well as deciding if this is to be an individual or partner assignment. How will you teach about the theorists?

Family Life Cycle: PREZI Project


If you like power point presentations, you will love PREZI presentations! PREZI is a free web-based technology used to create smooth presentations. This tool is user friendly, allows for easy video, image, music, and text insertion, offers a lot of pre-made templates to choose from and allows you to store all of your creations in one place. You can also save and edit PREZI’s created by others too. This project is used to introduce the family life cycle stages in a different mode. In the past, my students have done this family life cycle project poster style, that is, until I discovered this tool. Students enjoy, not only making them, but also viewing them and since the video clips are inserted into the presentation, there’s no jumping from screen to screen via links. This project also saves trees as students just share their links to their project and I can pull it up for easy grading.

Baby Gear Comparison


When choosing baby gear to welcome home a new little one, there are many options. While some of these items are required by law,Baby.Equipment others are not. Therefore, choosing between high, middle and low cost models becomes an investigation to make the best decision based on one’s needs and budget. There are pros and cons to every choice. In this activity students will put their consumer skills to the test by using the internet to compare high, middle, and low cost versions of baby gear and then analyze the results.

Pregnancy & Smoking


In order to capture the attention of your students, sometimes you have to resort to shock value tactics! This is sometimessmoking.pregnant necessary to do when teaching about really important topics that affect, not only themselves, but others too. Smoking during pregnancy would be one of those topics. This lesson takes approximately one period to teach (maybe a little more if you don’t give homework), but leaves students with a lasting impression of how this unhealthy habit can leave life long effects on their unborn child.

Choices & Consequences During Pregnancy


Before teaching my unit on prenatal care, I like to find out what my students already know about the subject. Sometimes aGroup.Discussion.Activity great way to do this is to have an all out brainstorm, discussion type of session prior to getting into individual lesson topics. This activity gets students thinking about the positive and negative consequences of choices that need to be considered while pregnant. Not only does this activity get students thinking, but it allows for them to discuss their ideas as well. The discussions can be in partners, small groups or as a whole class. Students can be given a participation grade based on the oral sharing of their ideas. In order to receive their points, they must share aloud. This gets those shy, quiet students you never hear from involved.