Six Factors that Affects Moral Development of a child

1. Family

Family plays an important role in a child's moral development. His first initiation into the mysteries of the good and the bad is through his parent's acceptance or rejection of his various actions.

The actions which are approved by the parents are regarded as good and those rejected by them are regarded as bad. The truth remains that the foundations of a child's moral development are laid in the family.

2. School

School, too, plays an important role in forming moral concepts. The child is influenced by the notions of the good and the bad as a result of his relationship with his classmates, teachers and senior students.

The propriety of his moral behaviour depends to a great extent on his learning. Children accept many things which they see their seniors doing in the school. Most of what has been learnt at the mother's knee is rejected. The teaching of moral science and a programme of moral education go a long way in the moral development of children and adolescents.

3. Peer Group

Children are always in search of suitable companions for play. They are influenced by the notions of good and bad that prevail among his chosen companions.

4. Society and Culture

The general social atmosphere also affects the moral development of the individual. It is this reason why the moral behaviour of individuals belonging to cultured societies is markedly different from that of individuals belonging to uncivilized societies.

5. Age

Age is an important factor in forming moral concepts and moral behaviors. As the individual passes from infancy to adolescence, he becomes more tolerant towards certain those ideals which sometimes do not tally with what he thinks to be good.

From unconditional obedience of his seniors in early and late childhood, the individual becomes critical and defiant in early adolescence. But in later adolescence he comes to accept many things which he had earlier rejected.

6. Sex

Sex also plays an important role in moral development Girls are more seized with the sense of guilt and shame if their behaviour does not find propriety within the accepted moral code. They try to be less critical of the moral tone set by their elders. Boys, on the other hand, are more aggressive than the girls and in most cases, set their own standards of moral behaviour and try to stick to them. 1

Hence moral development is a complex process in which the action and interaction of an individual and those surrounding him is of greatly importance.