Child Development Essay, Research Paper
Chapter 9: Developmental Psychology I
Teratogens are any medication, chemical, infectious disease or environmental factors that interfere with the normal development of a fetus that can result in a loss of pregnancy, birth defect, or a pregnancy complication.
A wide variety of factors include: drugs, alcohol, and viruses.
Through techniques of ultra sound and amniocentesis, one can determine the health of the fetus and determine whether terotagens have had any effect.
Ultra sound involves directing high-pitched sound waves toward the fetus. A computer converts the waves into a sonogram (outline image of the fetus, uterus, placenta).
Amniocentesis is the withdrawal and analysis of amniotic fluid to detect genetic abnormalties in the fetus.
Diana Baumrind : Parenting Styles
Parenting styles in the U.S. have been thoroughly researched by Diana Baumrind. Trained observers kept records of children’s behaviors in nursery school. Through these observations, 3 contrasting parenting styles were identified: authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive.
Authoritarian parents tend to be low in nurturance and high in parental control. They set absolute standards of behavior for their children that are not to be questioned or negotiated. Forceful discipline is favored and prompt obedience is demanded. They are less likely to use gentle methods of persuasion such as affection, praise and rewards with their children.
Authoritative parents tend to be high in nurturance and moderate in parental control when it comes to dealing with child behavior. They possess more knowledge, skill, control resources, and physical power than their children. They explain rules, decisions, and are willing to listen to the child’s point of view even when not accepting it. They are not likely to use physical punishment and stress absolute obedience.
Permissive parents tend to be moderate to high nurturance but low in parental control. They place few demands on their children and are likely to e inconsistent disciplinarians. They are accepting towards child impulses, desires, and actions. Morever, they are less likely to monitor their children’s behavior. Children raised in this manner tend to lack knowledge of appropriate behaviors for ordinary social situations and take little responsibility for their own misbehavior.
Jean Piaget: Theories of Child Development
Piaget discovers processes by which children gain new knowledge.
“Assimulation” is the method of incorporating information into our accustomed way of thinking. Thus, a child can constantly create and reacreat his own model of reality.
“Accommodation” is the process of altering one’s ways of thinking to include new information that does not fit into existing ways of thinking. Hence, mental growth can be achieved by integrating simpler concepts into higher level concepts.
Four stages within these developments can be traced.
Sensorimotor stage occurs during the first two years of a child’s life. It is concerned with mastering their own inherited physical reflexes and extending them into pleasurable or interesting actions. They experience the world in a direct manner and learn basic lessons before preceeding to more complex thoughts.
Preoperational stage occurs roughly from age 2 to 7 where the child learns to manipulate their own environment symbolically through inner thoughts about the external world. Thus, they become less dependent on physical stimuli and physical reactions to guide their behavior. During this stage one learns to represent objects by words and themselves.
Concrete operational stage occurs from age 7 to 12 by the beginning of logic in the child’s thought processes. The initiation of classification of objects bye their similiarities and differences can be established. The child begins to grasp the concepts of time and number.
Formal operational stage begins at the age 12 and extends to adulthood. It is characterized by and orderliness of thinking and a mastery of logical thought. The child learns in this final phase to manipulate abstract ideas, make hypotheses, and see implications of their own thinking and of others.