Chapter 8 Psychosocial Development in Early Childhood Self-concept • Total image of ourselves • Self-definition: cluster of characteristics by which we describe ourselves Three steps from ages 5-7 Age 4-Single representation: isolated, one- dimensional items, thinking without logical connections; cannot image having more than one emotion at a time; cannot decenter (consider different aspects of self simultaneously); dichotomous thinking. Real and ideal self seen as one. 5-6, moves to representational mapping: logical connections among parts of image of self; seen as completely positive, dichotomous terms; good or bad, not both. Three steps from ages 5-7 Middle childhood-Representational systems: begin to integrate specific features of the self into a general, multidimensional concept; self-descriptions more balanced. Self-esteem Self-evaluative part of self-concept, judgement about overall worth. Children’s pos/neg self-perceptions at age 5 tended to predict their self-perceptions and socioemotional functioning by age 8 5-7: not realistic image of self-worth. Seen as contingent on success. Helpless pattern: failure/criticism as indicative of their worth; stop trying; regress to easier work less challenging; self- denigration, self-blame, lowered self- expectations. Give-up. Erikson: Initiative Versus Guilt- 3-5½ • Genital-locomotor stage: initiative, expanding mastery and responsibility. • Learns to pursue, plan, and determination of achieving tasks and goals. • Growing Sense of Purpose: the virtue that ascend in this stage; major activity here is playing, explorations, attempts and failures, and experimentation with toys. • Danger of this stage: feeling of guilt for an overzealous contemplation of goals, including genital fantasies, use of aggression, manipulative means of achieving these goals. Erikson: Initiative Versus Guilt- 3-5½ • Mental games: assuming roles of parents and other adults in make believe world. • Imitation of adults allows for realization of what it is like to be them. • Play provides an immediate reality; learns what the purpose of things are, and connection between an inner and outer world. • Imaginative and uninhibited play are vitally important to the child’s development. Erikson: Initiative Versus Guilt- 3-5½ • Purpose: is the courage to envision and pursue valued goals uninhibited by defeat of infantile fantasies, by guilt, and by overcoming the fear of punishment. • This age of play is characterized by Dramatic realization: actively plays, wears costumes, imitating adult personalities and pretending to be anything. • Negative counterpart to dramatic realization is the ritualism of impersonation throughout life: adult plays roles to present false image of one’s true personality. Erikson: Initiative Versus Guilt- 3-5½ • Phallic Stage ****The child must discover ways to initiate actions on their own. If such actions are successful, guilt will be avoided. Gender Identity Gender differences: psychological and behavioral differences between males and females Sex differences: physical differences between males and females After age 3, boys/girls remain more similar. Boys: more aggressive behavior Girls: more empathetic and helpful; more compliant and cooperative with parents; seek adult approval more than boys • Girls tend to use more responsive language (praise, agreement) • IQ: shows no gender differences other than specific abilities • Females: better at verbal tasks, mathematical computations, tasks requiring fine motor and perceptual skills • Males: between in spatial abilities and abstract mathematical and scientific reasoning. • Girls’ superiority in perceptual speed and verbal fluency appears during infancy and toddlerhood • Boys’ greater ability to mentally mentally manipulate figures and shapes and solve mazes becomes apparent early in preschool years. • As toddlers, boys/girls equally likely to behave aggressively and to show difficult temperament • At age 4, problem behavior diminishes in girls; this difference continues into adolescence Gender Development • Gender roles: behaviors, interests, attitudes, skills, and personality traits considered for males or females; women expected to devote time for household and children; men to be providers and protectors. Women as compliant and nurturant; men active, aggressive, competitive • Gender-typing: process children acquire a gender role • Gender stereotypes: preconceived generalizations about male or female behavior • Females as passive; males as aggressive Four Perspectives on Gender Development Biology: Hormones • Male hormone testosterone with low levels of serotonin may be related to aggressiveness, competitiveness, and dominance; hypothalamus and amygdala • At age 5: Brain is adult size; boys 10% larger, mostly in cerebral cortex • Girls have greater neural density • Girls have larger corpus callosum: tissue joining right/left hemispheres; correlated with verbal fluency Four Perspectives on Gender Development Psychoanalytic approaches Identification: adoption of characteristics, beliefs, attitudes, values, and behaviors of the same sex parent. This develops once the child has given up wish to posses parent of opposite sex (Oedipus Complex and Electra Complex). Cognitive Approach: Kohlberg Children actively search for cues about gender in their social world; once realize which gender they belong, adopt behaviors consistent with being male or female. Acquisition of gender roles hinges on gender consistency: child’s realization that they are permanently male or female and adopt appropriate behaviors. Begins ages 2-3; constancy arrives around 3-7. Gender schema theory: a cognitive mechanism through which gender learning and gender-typing occur (Bem). Children very young begin to categorize events and people, organizing their observations into schema/categories. Males/females wear different cloths, play with different toys, different roles. Problem with the above two theories: gender- typing ebbs/flows. Ages 4-6, constructing their own gender schemas Socialization-Based approaches By observing role models. Choose the powerful and nurturing. Typically same sex parent. Bandura: social cognitive theory: gender identity as the outcome of a complex array of interacting influences, personal and social. Socialization- the way a child interprets and internalizes experiences with parents, teachers, others, plays central role. Shifts from socially guided control to self- regulation of gender-related behavior occurs between 3-4. Play Stimulates the senses, learns to use muscles, coordinate movement, gain mastery over bodies, acquire new skills. Different play Preschoolers: depends on gross motor skills, run, jump, throw, aim Middle childhood: Rough and tumble play involving wrestling, kicking, chasing Play Functional play: begins in infancy; involves repetitive muscle movement Constructive play: 4-6; using objects to make something Pretend play: begins age 2 and continues; fantasy, dramatic, imaginative; symbolic function Social dimension of play Unoccupied behavior: not playing; watches anything of momentary interest Onlooker behavior: watches others play, talks with others, does not interact to play Solitary independent play: plays alone with different toys than others are using; no attempts to get closer to others playing Social dimension of play Parallel play: plays independently among other children with similar toys but not necessarily in same way; playing besides them not with them Associative play: play with others. Talk about play, borrow/lend toys; follows; play similarly; interest in others more than activity Cooperative/organized play: plays in group to make something or play formal game; division of labor and a leader to the group; different roles assigned to each. Imaginary Friends • Ages 3-10 • Girls more likely than boys to have or acknowledge • Can distinguish fantasy from reality • When in free-play sessions, more likely to engage in pretend play than children without imaginary friends. • Play more happily and more imaginatively than other children and more cooperative with others Imaginary Friends • Do not lack friends at preschool • Fluent with language • Watch less tv • Show more curiosity, excitement, and persistence during play • Did better on theory of mind tasks • Greater emotional understanding three years later • Tend to continue with imaginary friends until around age 10 • A peer relationship; with peers, sociable and friendly • Provide a wish-fulfillment Forms of Discipline Reinforcement and Punishment • Children usually learn from reinforcement for good behavior versus punishment • External reinforcers may be tangible (candy) and intangible (smile) • Child must see it as rewarding • Consistent • Eventually, move to internal reward- sense of accomplishment and pride • Also denial of privileges can be used Forms of Discipline Punishment, if consistent, immediate, and clearly tied to the offense, may be effective. Administer calmly, in private, aimed at eliciting compliance, not guilt, along with short explanation Corporal punishment Use of physical force with intention of causing a child to experience pain, not for injury, purpose of correction or control of child’s behavior. Forms of Discipline Spanking, hitting, pinching, shaking Mostly used with aggressive children; hard to manage child; characteristics of a genetic basis. Must be loving parents and not result in serious injury However, evidence suggests that it has serious negative consequences and should not be used! Power Assertion, Induction, and Withdrawal of Love Power Assertion: intended to stop undesirable behavior though physical or verbal enforcement of parental control; includes demands, threats, withdrawal of privileges, spankings. Generally induces fear. Least effective. Induction: encourage desirable behavior (or discourage undesirable behavior) by reasoning with child; includes setting limits, demonstrating logical consequences, explaining, discussion, getting ideas from child about what is fair. Most effective. Power Assertion, Induction, and Withdrawal of Love Withdrawal of Love: may include ignoring, isolating, showing dislike for child. Psychological Aggression • Verbal attacks that may result in psychological harm; yelling, screaming, swearing, threatening to spank, threatening to kick out of house. Occurs in at least 2/10 households, likely 4-5/10 • 20% parents of toddlers engage in • 50% among parents of teens Parenting Styles Authoritarian • High on control but low on responsiveness • Characterized by low warmth • Little positive involvement with their children • Set rigid rules • Discipline harshly • Expect obey because of parental authority Parenting Styles Authoritative • Show warm, responsive involvement • Set appropriate and clear standards • Communicate openly • Provide rationale for rules • Show respect for children’s rights and opinions • Encourage autonomy and independence, resulting in social competence Parenting Styles Permissive-Indulgent • Highly warm and responsive • Place few demands or expectations • Rules that exist are not clearly communicated or enforced so children left to make own decisions and regulate own behavior Parenting Styles Permissive-Indifferent • Leave children alone to make their own decisions and control own behavior • Place few demands, neglectful • Appearing emotionally detached, show little or no involvement in their children’s lives Consequences of Parenting Styles (Baumrind) Authoritative: Self-reliance Social responsibility Higher levels of achievement Authoritarian: Social incompetence Anxiety about social comparison Failure to show initiative Poor communication skills Lower school performance Lower self-esteem Consequences of Parenting Styles (Baumrind) Permissive-indulgent: • Expect to get their own way • Show little respect for others • Never learn to control their own behavior • Lower school performance Permissive-Indifferent: • Social incompetence • Lack of self-control • Lower school performance However, no one right way to raise children. Cause- effect not demonstrated (e.g., parent style causing child’s incompetence- consider innate factors, temperament) Promoting Altruism Prosocial behavior: voluntary act intended to benefit another Altruism: giving of self without expectation of reward 4-5 year-olds who demonstrated sympathy and spontaneous altruistic acts demonstrated same behavior 17 years later; suggests predisposition possible temperament or genetic. Family is important as role model for explicit standards of behavior. Instrumental aggression: used as instrument to reach a goal. Usually occurs during social play, to get another toy (ages 2½-5). Due to developing more self-control, between 2-4, switch from physical aggression to verbal. Children at age 2 engaging in more hitting or grabbing likely to continue at age 5. 6-7, less aggressive and more cooperative. Hostile aggression- action intended to hurt another- tends to continue and increases over time. Testosterone underlies much of the male aggression.