Human Dev: Childhood and Adol.

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Part one: To prepare for this Discussion: Language Development

  • Think about the language scenarios provided in the lead-in to this Discussion. Consider the adult’s role in each of the examples.
  • Review this week’s Learning Resources, paying particular attention to the behavioral and nativist approaches.
  • Consider the behavioral and nativist approaches to language development, and ask yourself, “What role does the parent play?” If the parent believes in the behavioral approach or genetic foundations, how might the parent behave?
  • Think about your own experiences interacting with a baby and/or young child. How did you respond? What was your own theoretical inclination? If you do not have much experience interacting with children, try to imagine yourself in these types of interactions.

With these thoughts in mind:

By Day 2

Post an analysis of the parent’s role in language development. Summarize the parent’s role from the point of view of each of the two theoretical views of behaviorist and nativist approaches. How does the concept of infant-directed speech apply to the parent’s reactions to the infant and young child’s language development? Then, summarize your own view of the language acquisition process. Which theoretical approach makes the most sense to you, and why?

Part two: Assignment: Attachment and Temperament

Think about the following story:

Helen was born of average size and weight. Helen was an easy baby. She cried when she was hungry or cold or needed some attention but slept through the night by the time she was 4 months old. She adapted to change easily. Her mother worked full time and decided not to nurse. In this way, others could help with care giving. Helen’s father worked long hours, and when he was home, he was too tired to help with Helen’s feeding, diapering, and nighttime needs. Helen’s mother fed her regularly but did not think that when Helen cried after only 2 hours that she could possibly be hungry again, so she ignored some of Helen’s cries. As Helen got older, her father began to spend more time with her—mainly in play. Helen’s mother rarely played with her. During the day when Helen’s mother worked, Helen was taken care of by her aunt. Her aunt spent a lot of time playing with, singing to, and rocking Helen when she needed to be comforted.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review the article, “Introduction to the Special Section on Attachment Theory and Psychotherapy.

Davila, J., & Levy, K. (2006). Introduction to the special section on attachment theory and psychotherapy. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 74(6), 989–993.

  • Think about Helen’s experience and what you can discern about her temperament.
  • Consider how each of the caregivers in Helen’s life demonstrated their love. Think about how responsive the caregivers were to her needs.
  • Consider the possible attachment style (secure, avoidant, or anxious) that may have resulted from a combination of Helen’s temperament and the sensitivity of the care giving.
  • Think about Helen’s caregiving arrangement. Is it common that infants are cared for by more than one person in the United States and around the world?

The Assignment (2–3 pages):

  • Write an analysis of both Helen’s temperament and of the sensitivity of her caregivers.
  • Explain what research suggests about how Helen’s caregivers’ own attachment histories may influence how they interact with her.
  • Predict Helen’s attachment style. Be sure to explain how Helen’s temperament influences her attachment style.
    • Provide clear justification for your conclusions regarding the factors that influence the development of attachment style.

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