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ch09 1

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Published on December 28, 2007

Author: UpBeat

Source: authorstream.com

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CHAPTER NINE:  CHAPTER NINE SOCIAL AND PERSONALITY DEVELOPMENT IN MIDDLE CHILDHOOD I. THEORIES OF SOCIAL & PERSONALITY DEVELOPMENT :  I. THEORIES OF SOCIAL & PERSONALITY DEVELOPMENT Psychoanalytic theorists explain social and emotional development in terms of a struggle between internal drives and cultural demands Social-cognitive theorists have a very different view: The child’s growing understanding of the world provides the impetus for social and emotional development A. Psychoanalytic Perspectives :  A. Psychoanalytic Perspectives Latency stage: the fourth of Freud’s psychosexual stages, during which 6- to 12-year-olds’ libido is dormant while they establish relationships with same-sex peers Industry versus inferiority stage: the fourth of Erikson’s psychosocial stages, during which children develop a sense of their own competence through mastery of culturally defined learning tasks B. Social-Cognitive Perspectives :  B. Social-Cognitive Perspectives Descriptions of others move through highly similar changes, from the concrete to the abstract A 6- or 7-year-old, when describing others, will focus almost exclusively on external features such as what the person looks like, where he lives, what he does At age 7 or 8, the child begins to focus more on the inner traits or qualities of another person and to assume that those traits will still be visible in many situations II. DIMENSIONS OF MORAL DEVELOPMENT :  II. DIMENSIONS OF MORAL DEVELOPMENT One of parents’ and teachers’ greatest concerns is helping children learn to be good people, to do the “right” thing according to the standards and values of their culture Moral development takes into account psychoanalytic, cognitive-developmental, and learning theories A. Moral Emotions :  A. Moral Emotions Conscience: the list of “don’ts” in the superego; violation of any of these rules leads to feelings of guilt Ego ideal: the list of “dos” in the superego; failure to live up to any of these leads to feelings of shame B. Moral Reasoning :  B. Moral Reasoning Piaget noticed that younger children seemed to have less understanding of a games’ rules His observations led to his proposal of a two-stage theory of moral development: Moral realism stage: the first of Piaget’s stages of moral development, in which children believe rules are inflexible Moral relativism stage: the second of Piaget’s stages of moral development, in which children understand that many rules can be changed through social agreement Moral Reasoning (continued):  Moral Reasoning (continued) Lawrence Kohlberg’s Theory of Moral Development: Kohlberg pioneered the practice of assessing moral development by presenting a subject with a series of dilemmas in story form, each of which highlighted a specific moral issue Moral reasoning develops in stages and the stages are linked to progression through Piaget’s concrete operational and formal operational stages C. Moral Behaviour :  C. Moral Behaviour B.F. Skinner proposed that consequences teach children to obey moral rules Acceptable behaviour increases and unacceptable behaviour decreases as children get older Although consequences influence children’s behaviour, both reward and punishment are more effective when they are combined with instruction Punishment may actually interfere with moral development Social learning theorist Albert Bandura claims that children learn more from observing others than from either rewards or punishments III. SOCIAL RELATIONSHIPS :  III. SOCIAL RELATIONSHIPS School-aged children’s growing ability to understand others changes their social relationships in important ways Children continue to be attached to parents, but they are becoming more independent Relationships with peers become more stable and many ripen into long-term friendships A. Family Relationships :  A. Family Relationships School-aged children understand family roles and relationships much better than younger children School children continue to rely on their parents presence, support, and affections, despite spending less time with them Having family meals is the best predictor of better childhood outcomes The quality of a school-aged child’s attachment to her parents is also strongly related to her ability to maintain friendships with peers Parents now begin to teach children quite specific tasks that may be necessary for the survival of the family Self-regulation: children’s ability to conform to parental standards of behaviour without direct supervision The authoritative style of parenting is associated with the development of self-regulation (continued) Family Relationships (continued):  Family Relationships (continued) Sibling relationships seem to be less central to children’s lives in middle childhood than are relationships with their friends or parents In general, sibling relationships vary enormously Rival or critical relationships seem to be more common when siblings are four or fewer years apart in age Friendly and intimate relationships appear to be somewhat more common in pairs of sisters Rivalry seems to be highest in boy-boy pairs Only children are no different from children with siblings in any important way If any differences do exist, they seem to favour children without siblings B. Friendships :  B. Friendships The importance of peers, particularly close friendships increases during middle childhood: Children are more open and more supportive with friends—smiling, looking, laughing, and touching one another more—than with non-friends They talk more with friends and cooperate and help one another more than with non-friends Pairs of friends are more successful in solving problems or performing some task together than are non-friends School-age children are more critical of friends and have more conflicts with them; they are more polite with strangers When conflicts with friends occur, children are more concerned about resolving them than with non-friends Social skills still need to develop – activities that support ‘skills in maintaining positive relationships, dealing with conflict, and understanding their own feelings and behaviour are necessary C. Gender Segregation :  C. Gender Segregation Gender segregation patterns are even more pronounced when we look at friendships: Boys’ friendship groups are larger and more accepting of newcomers than are girls’ Girls are more likely to play in pairs or in small, more exclusive groups Boys play more outdoors and roam over a larger area in their play Girls spend more playtime indoors or near home or school Boys’ groups and boys’ friendships appear to be focussed more on competition and dominance, and higher levels of competition between pairs of friends than between strangers Girls’ friendships include more agreement, more compliance, and more self-disclosure, and higher levels of competition between strangers than between friends D. Patterns of Aggression :  D. Patterns of Aggression Physical aggression continues to become less common as children learn the cultural rules about when and how much it is acceptable to display anger or aggression At every age, boys show more physical aggression and more assertiveness than do girls Relational aggression: aggression aimed at damaging another person’s self-esteem or peer relationships, such as by ostracism or threats of ostracism, cruel gossiping, or facial expressions of disdain Retaliatory aggression: aggression to get back at someone who has hurt you Social class and family differences in rates of aggression in children have been found E. Social Status:  E. Social Status Social status: an individual child’s classification as popular, rejected, or neglected Three groups: popular, rejected, and neglected Attractive children and physically larger children are more likely to be popular Being very different from ones’ peers may also cause a child to be neglected or rejected Shy children usually have few friends, and highly creative children are often rejected, as are those who have difficulty controlling their emotions Children’s prosocial behaviour seems to be more important than looks or temperament IV. PERSONALITY AND SELF-CONCEPT :  IV. PERSONALITY AND SELF-CONCEPT One key contributor to a school-aged child’s social relationships is his own personality A child’s self-concept also has an impact on her social relationships, and the quality of her relationships contributes to her developing self-perceptions A. The Big Five Personality Traits:  A. The Big Five Personality Traits The Big Five: a set of five major dimensions of personality, including extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness/intellect The Big Five are not only identifiable and stable in middle childhood, but are also extremely important Personality assessment in middle childhood may be a useful way to identify children who are in need of interventions to prevent delinquency The Big Five Personality Traits:  The Big Five Personality Traits B. The Psychological Self :  B. The Psychological Self Psychological self: an understanding of one’s stable, internal traits During middle childhood, the psychological self becomes increasingly complex and abstract As a child moves through the concrete operational period, the psychological self becomes more complex, more comparative, less tied to external features, and more centred on feelings and ideas C. The Valued Self :  C. The Valued Self Self-esteem: a global evaluation of one’s own worth Both social support and a low perceived discrepancy between the ideal and actual self are needed to influence self-esteem Global self-esteem is quite stable in the short term, but less so over periods of several years (continued) The Valued Self (continued):  The Valued Self (continued) The child’s level of self-esteem is strongly correlated with depression in both middle childhood and adolescence Three sources of self-esteem: A child’s own direct experience with success or failure in various arenas plays an obvious role The value a child attaches to some skill or quality is obviously affected fairly directly by peers’ and parents’ attitudes and values Labels and judgements from others play a highly significant role as children come to think of themselves as others think of them V. INFLUENCES BEYOND FAMILY AND SCHOOL :  V. INFLUENCES BEYOND FAMILY AND SCHOOL The daily life of the school-aged child is shaped by more than the hours he spends in school The circumstances in which a child lives also affect him A child is also affected by her family’s economic circumstances, by the neighbourhood she lives in, and by the TV programs she watches A. After-School Care :  A. After-School Care Self-care children: children who are at home by themselves after school for an hour or more each day Self-care children are more poorly adjusted in terms of both peer relationships and school performance Children under the age of 9 or 10 should not care for themselves B. Television :  B. Television Nearly every Canadian home has a TV, and most have access to cable or satellite Children between the ages of 2 and 11 spend an average of 14.6 hours per week watching Programs specifically designed to be educational or to teach children positive values do indeed have demonstrable positive effects There is strong research evidence for the existence of a causal link between viewing violence on TV and higher rates of aggression or violence in children Canadian boys in Grades 6 through 10 consistently watched more television than girls The rates of viewing for both boys and girls declined as the children grew older

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