Childhood Normative Experiences Note.docx

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Western University
Health Sciences
Health Sciences 2700A/B
Treena Orchard

Childhood Development: The Normative Model October 8, 2013 Jessica Hogle Read: Berk, 2008: 168-175, 178-182, 200-208, 211-219) View Film: Mickey Mouse Monopoly Influences on Physical Growth and Health  Heredity important but environmental factors—including good nutrition, relative freedom from disease, and physical safety—play crucial roles  Heredity and Hormones o Genes influence growth y controlling the body’s production of hormones o Pituitary gland: located at the base of the brain, plays a crucial role by releasing two hormones that induce growth o Growth Hormone (GH) is one of the hormones released by the pituitary gland  From birth on is necessary for development of all body tissues except CNS and genitals  Those lacking GH reach an average height of only 4’4” o Second hormone is thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH_  Prompts the thyroid gland (in the neck) to release thyroxine which is necessary for brain development and for GH to have its full impact on body size  Babies born with a deficiency of thyroxine must receive it at once, or they will be mentally retarded  Nutrition o Preschoolers appetites decline because their growth has slowed; wariness of new foods is also adaptive o Sticking to familiar foods; less likely to swallow dangerous substances when adults are not around to protect them o Preschoolers compensate for eating little at one meal by eating more at a later one o Children ten to imitate the food choices of those they admire o Too much parental control limits children’s opportunities to develop self-control o When offering bribes like a cookie if they finish their broccoli will tend to make the child like the healthy food less and the unhealthy food more o Low SES North American children are on average about 1” shorter than their economically advantaged counterparts  Diet in developing countries are deficient in protein and in essential vitamins and minerals  Infectious Disease o When children are poorly fed, disease interacts with malnutrition in vicious spiral and potentially severe consequences o Infectious Disease and Malnutrition  In developing countries, many children line in poverty and do not receive routine immunizations  Poor diet supresses the body’s immune system, making children far more susceptible to disease  Disease is major contributor to malnutrition, hindering both physical growth and cognitive development  Illness reduces appetite and limits the body’s ability to absorb foods, especially in children with intestinal infections  Administer ORT (oral rehydration therapy) which is a mixture of glucose, salt, and water that quickly replaces fluids the body loses  Saves millions of lives annually o Immunization  In industrialized nations, immunizations of infants and young children has led to a dramatic decline in childhood diseases during the past half-century  In the US, 24% of preschoolers lack immunizations; 40% of low SES children  In Canada, Denmark and Norway, Great Britain, the Netherlands, and Sweden only less than 10% lack the essential immunizations  Why is this?  US children do not have access to free health care like these countries do  Parents with stressful lives lack to schedule appointments  Misconceptions about vaccines  We need public education programs that increase parental knowledge about the importance of timely immunizations  Childhood Injuries o Unintentional injuries are the leading cause of childhood mortality in industrialized countries o Auto and traffic accidents, drownings, and burns are the most common injuries during early childhood o Motor vehicle collisions are by far the most frequent among all ages, ranking as the leading cause of death among children more than 1 year old o Factors related to childhood injuries  Common view of childhood injuries says they are due to chance and cannot be prevented  These injuries occur within a complex ecological system of individual, family, community, and societal influences—and we can do something about them  Boys more likely to be injured than girls because of their higher activity level and more willingness to take risk  Children with certain temperamental characteristics— irritability, inattentiveness, and negative mood—more at risk  Poverty and low parental education are also strongly associated with injury o Preventing Childhood Injuries  Laws prevent many injuries  Playground can be covered with protective surfaces  Window guards can be given to families in high rise apartments to prevent falls Motor Development  Gross Motor Development o Balance improves greatly as children become more streamlined and less top heavy, allowing their centre of gravity to change o By age 2, their gaits become more smooth and rhythmic o As they become steadier on their feet, their arms and torsos are freed to experiment with new skills o By age 5-6 , they simultaneously steer and pedal a tricycle and flexibly move their whole body when throwing, catching and jumping  Fine Motor Development o Apparent in using utensils, drawing and first efforts to write, dressing and undressing, tying shoes o Drawing  Variety of factors combine with fine motor control to influence changes in children’s artful representations  Scribbles  At first, the intended representation is contained in gestures rather than marks on the page  First representational forms  Around age 3, children’s scribbles start to become picture  Become more detailed when parents draw with them and show representations to reality  Major milestone in drawing occurs when children use lines to represent the boundaries of objects  More realistic drawings  Greater realism in drawings occurs gradually, as perception, language, memory, and fine motor capacities improve o Early Printing  At first preschoolers do not distinguish writing from drawing  Around age 4 you can see some distinctive features of print  Between ages 4-6 is when children realize that writing stands for language  Individual Differences in Motor Skills o Child with a tall, muscular body tends to move more quickly and to acquire certain skills earlier than a short, stocky youngster o Boy ahead of girls in skills that emphasize force and power  Greater muscle mass and slightly longer fore arms contribute to their skill advantages o Girls have edge for fine motor skills and in certain gross motor skills that require a combination of good balance and foot movement  Greater overall physical maturity is partly responsible for their better balance and precision of movement o Social pressures for boys to be active physically skilled and for girls to play quietly and fine motor activities exaggerate small, genetically based sex differences o Children master the motor skills of early childhood through everyday play o Adults involved in young children’s motor activities should focus on fun, not on perfecting the correct technique Cognitive Development: Piaget’s Theory: The Preoperational Stage  Preoperational stage: spans the years 2 to 7, the most obvious change is an extraordinary increase in representational or symbolic activity  Mental Representation o Language is our most flexible means of mental representation o Believed that sensorimotor activity leas o internal images and experiences, which children then label with words  Make- Believe Play o Through pretending, young children practice and strengthen newly acquired representational schemes o Development of Make-Believe  Play detaches from the real life conditions associated with it  Toddlers use only realistic objects in early pretending  Imitate adults actions  Have trouble using an object that already has an obvious use as a symbol for another object  Gradually they can flexibly imagine objects and events without any supports form the real world  Play becomes less self-centred  At first, make believe is directed towards the self  Soon children begin to direct pretend actions toward other objects (like feeding a doll)  Play includes more complex combinations of schemes  Sociodramatic play: the make believe with other that is under way by age 2 ½ and increases rapidly during the next few years  Can understand story lines and put things together like pouring into a cup then drinking it o Benefits of make-believe 
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