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01:830:331 (54)
Chapter 10

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Margaret Ingate

Ch. 10: Emotional Development  Introduction o Preschoolers and delayed gratification with treats. o Emotional intelligence: a set of abilities that contribute to competence in the social and emotional domains.  Abilities include being able to motivate oneself and persist in the face of frustration, control impulses and delay gratification, identify and understand one’s own and others’ feelings, regulate one’s moods, regulate the expression of emotion in social interactions, and empathize with others’ emotions.  Emotional Intelligence predicts how well people do in life, especially in their social lives.  The Development of Emotions in Childhood o Emotion: characterized by physiological responses, subjective feelings, cognitions related to those feelings, and the desire to take action. o Emotions are seen in terms of several components:  Physiological factors: heart and breath rate, hormone levels, etc.  Subjective feelings  The cognitions that may elicit or accompany subjective feelings  The desire to take action, including the desire to escape, approach, or change people or things in the environment. o Theories on the Nature and Emergence of Emotion  Discrete emotions theory: a theory about emotions, held by Tomkins, Izard, and others, in which emotions are viewed as innate and discrete from one another from very early in life, and each emotion is believed to be packaged with a specific and distinctive set of bodily and facial reactions.  Alan Sroufe believes there are three basic affect systems- joy/pleasure, anger/frustration and wariness/fear- and these systems undergo developmental change from primitive to more advanced forms during the early years of life.  Changes are largely due to infants’ expanding social experiences and their increasingly ability to understand them.  Functionalist approach: a theory of emotion, proposed by Campos and others, that argues that the basic function of emotions is to promote action toward achieving a goal. In this view, emotions are not discrete from one another and vary somewhat based on the social environment.  Emotional reactions are affected by social goals and the influence of significant others.  All agree that cognitions and experience shape emotional development.  Dynamic-systems theory: novel forms of functioning arise through the spontaneous coordination of components interacting with each other repeatedly.  In these interactions specific cognitions, emotional feelings, and physiological events tend to link together more closely with each repeated occasion, forming coherent “emotional interpretations” that become increasingly coordinated each time they are co-activated. o The Emergence of Emotion in the Early Years and Childhood  It is hard to determine exactly what emotions infants are experiencing, and it is particularly difficult to differentiate among the various negative emotions that young infants express.  Positive Emotions  Early smiles may be reflexive and seem to be evoked by some biological state rather than by social interaction.  Social smiles: smiles that are directed at people. They first emerge as early as 6 to7 weeks of age.  When infants are at least 2 months of age, they also show happiness in both social and nonsocial contexts in which they can control a particular event.  At about 7 months of age, infants start to smile primarily at familiar people, rather than at people in general.  Negative Emotions  The first negative emotion that is discernible in newborn infants is generalized distress, which can be evoked by a variety of experiences ranging from hunger and pain to overstimulation.  Fear and Distress o By 4 months of age, infants do seem war of unfamiliar objects and events. o By 6-7 months, initial signs of fear begins in appear o Begins around 8 months and the fear of strangers intensifies and lasts until about 2. o Other fears also evident at 7 months include fear of novel toys, loud noises, and sudden movements by people of objects, all of which tend do decline after 12 months of age. o Separation anxiety: feelings of distress that children, especially infants and toddlers, experience when they are separated, or expected to be separated, from individuals to whom they are emotionally attached.  The Self-Conscious Emotions: Embarrassment, Pride, Guilt, and Shame  Self-conscious emotions: emotions such as guilt, shame, embarrassment, and pride that relate to our sense of self and our consciousness of others’ reactions to us.  Believed that these emotions emerge in the second year because that is when children gain the understanding that they are entities distinct from other people and begin to develop a sense of self.  At 15-24 months, some children start to show embarrassment when they are made the center of attention.  By age 3 children’s pride is increasingly tied to the level of their performance.  Guilt is associated with empathy for others and involves feelings of remorse and regret about one’s behavior, as well as the desire to undo the consequences of that behavior.  Shame is focused on the child themselves: they feel that they are exposed, and they often feel like hiding.  Normal Emotional Development in Childhood  The causes of emotion continue to change in childhood.  Early to middle adolescence is marked by an increase in the frequency or intensity of negative emotions and a decrease in positive emotion.  Depression  Clinical depression is 15% from about 15-18 years old.  Major depression is characterized by: depressed mood most of the time; marked diminished interest or pleasure in almost all activities; weight loss; insomnia or excessive sleeping; motor agitations; fatigue or loss of energy; feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt; diminished ability to think or concentrate; recurrent thoughts of death.  Poorer children are prone to major depression.  Causes of depression: o Heredity o Low levels of family engagement, support, and acceptance. o Maladaptive behaviors: seeing oneself and others in an excessively negative way and feel incompetent and worthless and view the world as cruel and unfair. o Lack regulation and skills needed for positive social interactions. o Combination of personal vulnerability and external stressful factors.  Regulation of Emotion o Emotional self-regulation: the process of initiating, inhibiting, or modulating internal feeling states and related physiological processes, cognitions, and behaviors.  Internal feeling states (the subjective experience of emotion)  Emotion-related cognitions (thoughts about one’s desires or goals, or one’s interpretation of an evocative situation)  Emotion-related physiological processes (heart rate and hormonal or other physiological reactions that can change as a function of regulating one’s feeling states and thoughts)  Emotion-related behavior (actions or facial expressions related to one’s feelings) o The Development of Emotional Regulation  Characterized by three general age-related patterns of change  Infant’s transition from their relying almost totally on other people to help them regulate their emotions to their being increasingly able to self- regulate during early childhood.  Use of cognitive strategies to control negative emotions.  Involves the selection of appropriate regulating strategies.  The Shift from Caregiver Regulation to Self-Regulation  By 6 months of age, infants show the first signs of emotional self-regulation. o Occasionally, they can self-soothe: engage in repetitive rubbing or stroking of their body or clothing  By ages 1 and 2, infants distract themselves from distressing stimuli by selectively averting their attention.  Instead of pouting or throwing a temper tantrum when they can’ have their own way, children can increasingly manage their negative emotional
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