How self-esteem evolves in childhood

How self-esteem evolves in childhood

Self-esteem is how each person values ​​their own abilities, qualities and skills. and it is related to the goals that one proposes. For example, a child who values ​​being good at sports, but does not become the best, may have a negative assessment of himself in that regard.

The dimensions that are relevant in The self-esteem of boys and girls changes with age, this is how self-esteem evolves in childhood.

To assess self-esteem in early childhood, between 4 and 7 years old, we can talk about at least four different and relevant areas at these ages:

- Physical competence.

- Cognitive-academic competence.

- Acceptance by peers

- Acceptance by parents.

From the preschool years, boys and girls seem to be able to describe how competent or skilled they are in each of the previous dimensions, and their self-esteem in childhood can vary considerably from one domain to another. Self-esteem is built like self-concept from early childhood and gradually becomes more complex as development progresses.

- Around 6 years there is an important change in relation to self-esteem and it is the importance that peers acquire, the children with whom they interact on a daily basis. Every time there is a greater social comparison and the evaluations they make of themselves are more objective and realistic, (before the age of 6, children tend to have a very positive self-esteem).

- From 7-8 years, self-esteem is consolidating and has a more global character, than in previous ages. In the development of self-esteem, family educational practices seem to have a decisive influence on the development of a more or less positive self-esteem, but they are not the only source of influence. Relationships with other children, teachers, classmates, the different settings in which they participate (school, neighborhood, extracurricular ...), acquire great importance in the construction of this self-esteem from the age of 7-8.

But this does not mean that the only thing that children rely on to assess themselves positively or negatively has to do only with what others think of them. Self-esteem also depends on the personal characteristics of each child, that is, whether or not the child gives importance to certain aspects of himself (I am not very skilled in sports, but I don't care about sports because what I like is music and I'm very good at that) .

In short, self-esteem and self-concept are built from when we are very young, and although it may not seem like it, the comments that children receive from other classmates, teachers and parents will exert an influence on them.

Nicknames, teasing, comments, do not affect all children in the same way, but they do influence. A child who feels accepted, dear, who feels that others value him, that they trust him, trusts more in his own abilities than another who receives ridicule and criticism. And in the same way, a child who feels valued is less vulnerable to nicknames or comments than one who is more insecure or has a less positive self-concept.

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