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Child Development

Child Development

Home Economics Child Development

GCSE Child Development is a broad, challenging yet interesting course of study. The course focuses on child development from conception to the age of five years.  Students will develop knowledge, understanding and skills in diverse family lifestyles, conception, pregnancy, birth, diet, health, stages of development (including physical, cognition, emotional and social) and the role of professionals within the realm of early years.  In addition to academic study, students will also develop a critical and analytical approach by planning and carrying out detailed investigations.

To enhance the students' knowledge, understanding and practical application, students are given the opportunity to care for an electronic baby where they have complete responsibility of giving the care to a ‘real care’ baby. During a simulation, the baby will cry to be cared for as a real infant would. The caregiver must determine what the baby needs and respond in a timely manner. The baby must be fed, burped, rocked and have nappies changed around the clock.

The most effective way for adolescents to learn about the demands and consequences of parenting is first-hand experience; therefore the purpose of the electronic baby is to experience real life babies and the disadvantages of teenage parenthood.  With parental consent, students look after the electronic babies for a complete weekend.

Child development is offered as an optional subject (non-compulsory) from Year 9 and is studied as a single award, which is worth one GCSE.  The course is studied over 3 years and the examination board is OCR.  This scheme of assessment is untiered and covers all levels of ability:


About the course/units of study

Students will learn in a variety of ways including, research tasks, guest speakers, videos, surveys, observations, oral presentations, practical investigations and ICT. Students will be expected to adhere to the highest standards of work ethic by contributing to a positive teaching and learning environment and respecting other students’ right to learn.  Students are therefore encouraged to work to the best of their ability and to meet all important deadlines.  There are three units of study (two controlled assessments and one external examination).  Examination and Controlled Assessment periods are taken in the June when students are in Year 11.

Unit B011 Child Development Short tasks  (Controlled Assessment) Students will undertake three short tasks, two practical and one investigative task. 

Unit B012 Child Study task.  (Controlled Assessment)

Students carry out a detailed study into one child aged between 0-5 years. The research will include selecting, planning and carrying out practical observations.  Students will critically evaluate their work and make recommendations for future study

Unit B013  (Examination)

Students will learn about diverse families from the twentieth and twenty first century, pre-conceptual health, reproduction, pregnancy, birth, ante-natal and post-natal care, nutrition, health, development, health and safety and professional sources of support.  The examination provides an opportunity for extended writing and varied question types.  There are five main questions with limited and free response answers with marks from 1-15.  The examination covers all aspect of the course specification.