A good way to know if your child’s development is appropriate for his age is by use of the child behavior checklist. Usually a parent or teacher can suspect a problem in a child. Then the concern has to be identified. Some behaviors that concern parents and teachers include:
emotional issues such as anxiety, depression and seeming attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (known by the acronym ADHD),
developmental issues such as communication skills, maturity level, and social and physical development,
aggression issues such as anger management, bullying, biting, and hitting,
problems in preschool and school such as grade level determination and readiness for kindergarten.
Child Behaviour Checklist
The child behavior checklist is best utilized by a person who has regular contact with the child, and therefore knows the child well. Children are divided into two categories. The younger category is 18 months to 5 years, and the older category is 6 to 18 years, for the purposes of the child behaviour checklist.
Statements are made about the particular child’s behavior. For example, the checklist will inquire as to whether the child acts too young for his or her age. A Likert scale records the responses of the person making the assessment – options are: Not True, Somewhat or Sometimes True, Very True or Often True. The child behaviour checklist for preschoolers consists of 100 questions and the child behaviour checklist for children of school age contains 120 questions. The person assessing the student rates the child’s problem behaviors and areas of competence. It is possible to measure change in a child’s behavior over time, or differences following a treatment. The questionnaire consists different sections. First there are 20 competence items. In the second section, 120 queries on behavior or emotional problems appear. The time period covered on the child behaviour checklist should be the past six months of the student’s schooling. Also available for the Child Behavior Checklist are Teacher Report Forms, Youth Self-Reports and Direct Observation Forms.
The child behavior checklist was first developed by Thomas M. Achenbach, PHD, a professor of psychiatry and psychology at the University of Vermont. In the field of child psychology, it has been one of the most widely-used standardized measures for evaluating behavioral and emotional problems in cases where a child is not adapting. When a child seems overly anxious, depressed, aggressive, hyperactive, noncompliant, or appears to be significantly either over controlled or under controlled, having the child tested with the child behavior checklist can benefit said child and all those who teach, parents or otherwise interact with him or her.
Child Behaviour Checklist – Conclusion
Some areas measured by the child behavior checklist are: social withdrawal, somatic complaints (feeling physically unwell), anxiety and depression, destructive behavior, social problems, thought problems, attention problems, aggressive behavior, and delinquent behaviors. All in all, the child behaviour checklist has proven to be a valuable tool for primary caregivers such as mothers, fathers, teachers and other adults close to the challenged child, in validating a suspected problem in a child’s development and in helping to identify it accurately.