Observe the child during natural routines of the day.
As the child is able to move and perform actions independently, he begins to resists adult control. Observe responses to the adult trying to assist, tell the child what to do, or manage behavior.
The child may pull away from the adult, hit the adult, or knock items away that are offered. He wants to do things himself even though he is not quite capable. Adult assistance is rejected.
This stage is frustrating for early childhood educators and parents. Help the adults understand that these outbursts are part of normal, positive development. Assertion of independence is an important step for the child to gain autonomy and self-confidence. Encourage adults to let the child make decisions as much as possible and tolerate efforts that are not complete or just right.
North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015
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