Sunday, May 20, 2018

Moral Development In Children

Moral development happens when a child needs to evaluate different beliefs and values and choose which set of rules they'll follow. Sometimes parents try to present their child with the correct choice rather than having the child learn the consequences of their choices. This can impact the child's ability to make decisions when the parent isn't around to provide guidance. Parents who let their children make their own choices  but remove negative  consequences rather than following through with punishment manifest how children are presented with opportunities to resolve moral conflicts and learn appropriate moral responses through experiences.

Moral development helps children develop their own attitudes and values. Parents who allow their children to make their own choices but remove negative  consequences  prevent their children from moral development because they don't follow through with any consequence. It hinders moral development because the child is being told what's right and wrong. For example, if a child chooses  to lie about doing their homework and there isn't a consequence for not doing their homework children learn there is nothing right or wrong about lying about not doing their homework and no moral lesson is taught or learned. The opportunity for the child to learn what an appropriate moral response to lying is not presented and the moral dilemma of whether lying is right or wrong isn't resolved.

Moral development is an important  concept because it applies to the conditions of relationships with peers. Pro-social development progresses through the ongoing productive interactions between children and their parent's, sibling's, friends and culture. The give and take feature of social influence motivates the complex process shaping social and emotional development in childhood. Parents can use inductive reasoning to inform children of norms and principles to explain the effects of children's actions. This will help a child when they get stuck in one way of looking at a situation and help them see other possibilities. Explaining consequences of a person's actions improves children's reasoning skills. When children misbehave parents should explain why their actions were hurtful to others so children can understand consequences of their behavior.

Values are qualities or beliefs that are viewed as desirable or important. Infants and toddlers learn values through interactions they have with family, caregivers and other children they're exposed to. The development of values happens in a social setting. Children interact with other people in their environment and as they do so attitudes are gained through the socialization process. Attitudes can be learned through instruction or modeling. For example, an attitude can be learned through instruction when a parent tells a child to behave a certain way, "Go tell your sibling to hurry before I leave them here." Attitudes can be modeled by an older sibling talking back to the parents and then the younger siblings doing the action as well.

A child's value and belief system steadily develops as children resolve discrepancies in competing beliefs and values. Values are influenced by various factors and often reflect the values of the parents, teachers, religion, culture and friends of children. Age, experiences and cognitive development impact the values children come to hold. Attitudes and values are different for each family. As parents instill in their children the attitudes and values they have their children will  form the same attitudes and values or shape their own using their parents as a foundation. Teaching attitudes and values can be tricky but it's important for parents to remember, understand and respect that children will develop their own attitudes and values as they grow.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Four Factors That Influence Attitudes and Beliefs of School Aged Children

Factor that influence the development of attitudes and beliefs in school aged children are: family, peers, mass media and school community. Family members are the people who children spend the most time with and have the most influence on attitudes of children. Children's attitudes toward academic achievement, physical activity, and risk taking are all influenced by parents. For example, if a parent doesn't care about what kind of grades a child receives as long as they're passing, the child may learn not to value education. If a parent lets a child eat whatever they want with no thought tow whether or not it's healthy, a child won't be careful about what kinds of food they eat.

Peers and a child's circle of friends have a large influence on children's attitudes and beliefs. Children spend a majority of their day with peers and friends and therefore attitudes and beliefs of this group impact children's attitudes and beliefs. Children have a tendency to compare their behavior with behavior of friends. They understand the difference between classmates within the in-group and out-group. Peer influences increase as children get older which is why it's important for children to be part of a group that accepts them as equals.

Mass media affects children's attitudes and beliefs and they are flooded with messages  daily which cause a child to change their attitudes and beliefs to reflect the message they see and hear on TV, radio and print. Video games can effect attitudes and beliefs and what messages these send depend on the types of video games children play.

School community can develop attitudes and beliefs because of gender roles and stereotyping that can happen in schools. For example, if  a school makes it a requirement for girls to take a class on cooking and sewing and not boys the school has taught these skills are only for girls. If a school requires boys to take a class on Technology but doesn't require girls to, the school has taught these skills are only for boys.

It is important to be careful of the messages we send children through the attitudes we teach and show by example and the beliefs we share with them. We also remember we need to remember beliefs and attitudes come from other places other than home to discuss why a behavior may not be good or a belief is different from ours while also teaching our children those beliefs are just different from ones we may have but that doesn't make them wrong.


Sunday, May 6, 2018

Helping Children Learn How to Recognize Difference Between Opinion and Fact

Logic is the study of reasoning and examines the structure and content of arguments. Logic helps describe various types of arguments and evaluates why good arguments work and bad ones fail. Some people use dogmatism to state their position. Dogmatism is of course when a person claims their opinion to be true. There is a difference between opinion and fact. An opinion is a belief based on what someone thinks to be true or likely. A fact is something that has actually happened or that is really true and reality.

A fallacy is a mistake in reasoning. There are around 23 fallacies a person can use when making an argument. The begging the question fallacy is when a person commits a mistake in reasoning by assuming what one seeks to prove. For example, everyone wants the latest iphone when it comes out because it is the hottest phone of the season. This is a fallacy and an example of begging the question because there are some people who don't like or use iphones. Another type of fallacy is the argument of scare tactics. This fallacy is used to play on a person's fears in order to get the person to do something or believe something to be true. For example, if a dad tells a guy to leave his daughter alone and to let her believe he doesn't care about her or he as the dad will do something to either the guy or his daughter-whatever the threat may be to get the guy to leave his daughter alone- the dad has played on the fears of the guy in order to get him to leave his daughter alone and the guy has believed the dad will do whatever the dad has threatened to do.

There are other forms of fallacies such as scapegoating, the red herring and many more. Regardless of what fallacy a person uses the fallacy uses informal logic which is why these are never true. However, because children's brains are still developing, they can be influenced to believe the generalizations that fallacies use when people use them to prove their claim. When fallacies are used, the claims are usually false and cannot be proven. Children need guidance from adults to consider whether a claim is true or whether they can actually do legally what they claim they will do.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Middle School Aged Children and Cognitive Abilities

Hi everyone,
I'm back. Sorry it was such a long break. I finally have a new computer and can get back to posting again. So let's just dive right back in and start off where we left off. Last post we discussed children and motivation. Now lets discuss cognitive abilities.

Middle school is considered to be between the ages of six and eleven or twelve. It's a time that's filled with transitions but most particularly cognitive abilities. The progress children make in their cognitive abilities affects their attitudes and beliefs. A cognitive area that develops to help children is spatial thinking. When children are encouraged and taught to sharpen their skills in analyzing problems and recognizing spatial relationships, parents can help children develop positive, confident attitudes. Spatial thinking is a child's ability to see pictures of words. It's a child's ability to participate in problem solving and use pattern recognition using objects and spatial relationships. For example, being able to use spatial thinking to parallel park.

Another way children grow in cognitive abilities that helps children progress in attitudes and beliefs is cause and effect thinking. Cause and effect thinking indicates a child's ability to understand the sequences of events as they pertain to logical order. For example, if you don't brush your teeth you get cavities. The ability to think problems through in a way that moves a situation forward is important in influencing a child's attitudes and beliefs. Children need to be  able to internally process the consequences of their actions based on what they identify to be right or wrong and act appropriately. When children work through this stage, parents and other members of their micro-system can help them talk it through in order to better prepare them for the future.

Parents need to be aware that cognitive development has the potential to cause children to generalize attitudes and beliefs in ways that may not be true. Racial and gender issues come into play when this happens because cultural messages from outside environments and a child's community may be persuading children that generalizations are true.  Some people use informal logic to make their arguments which can confuse a child. Logic is the study of reasoning and examines the structure and content of arguments. Logic helps describe various types of arguments and evaluates why good arguments work and bad ones fail.  In the next post we'll discuss logic, and informal logic and how to tell the difference.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Last Leg

I apologize it's been a while since you've heard from me and  it unfortunately will be a little while longer. My computer is on it's last leg. I'm going to have to get a new one. I've tried posting other posts but my computer doesn't want to post them whether I post right away or schedule for another time they just aren't getting posted. I'm hoping this one will. SO....bear with me a while longer. I have to get taxes back and then look into getting another  computer before I'm back to posting. Sorry for the inconvenience. 

Friday, February 23, 2018

School Age Children and Motivation

When children become school aged motivation becomes a more self-centered activity and is more individually tailored. Achievement motivation in a school aged child is more related to actually achieving a task. School aged children's motivation may only be seen in one aspect of their life such as achieving their baseball goals but not performing well at school.

Parenting practices influence achievement motivation. If a parent's expectations are unreasonable (too high or low) it affects children's motivation. For example, if a parent expects a child to do the dishes by themselves at age five without an older sibling  or parent helping them, this is an unreasonable expectation. It will affect a child's motivation because it will cause them to think they can't do anything much less right. Low motivation can be caused by expectations that are too easy or too high. Both cause a child to take a why try attitude. Parents whose expectations are developmentally appropriate tend to have high motivation to accomplish a task. Children who show high achievement usually come from homes that include developmentally appropriate timing of achieving expectations. They also come from homes where parents have high confidence in their children's abilities, a supportive family environment and high motivated role models. School aged children who have high expectations of themselves tend to stay with a task longer and end up performing better on tasks than children who have low expectations.

Children who are school aged link self-efficacy to the choice of tasks, effort and persistence and achievement in their choice of task. Children's interpretation of their abilities tends to predict their achievement rather than their interpretation of what others believe their abilities are. School aged children's conceptions about their capabilities are based on whether the ability is considered stable over time. School aged children with high self-efficacy set and embrace challenging goals, use appropriate strategies to achieve them, try hard, persist with difficult tasks and seek help when necessary.Children with low self-efficacy tend to be frustrated and depressed which makes the idea of success more intangible. When a child has low self-efficacy parents, siblings, friends, teachers etc need to help.

These are some of the ways and reasons it is important to encourage children, build a healthy self-esteem and be supportive of and to children.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

People Who Influence Preschoolers Attitudes

Attitudes in preschool children are influenced by family, friends, mas media and the community they live in as well as the preschool they're enrolled in. A child's age, cognitive development and social experiences affect the development of a child's attitudes and beliefs. Messages from these influences in a preschoolers life play an essential role in the development of a child.

Family can influence attitude development in a child through modeling appropriate or inappropriate behavior. A child learns to perform behavior simply by watching someone else perform the same behavior, therefore they model the behaviors and attitudes they see in their everyday lives. This comes from interactions they have, conversations they hear among parents, siblings and extended family. For example, if a child is taught to define different as wrong they will not accept anyone who is different from them because they've been different is wrong. If a child has been taught different just means different and that people make different choices and those choices are neither right nor wrong, the child will grow up to accept people, opinions and beliefs and not look down on them because they're different than they are. How children are socialized affects  future attitudes and plays a role in shaping children's futures. For example if a child is taught they can't be friends with someone because they're not a member of their religion, the child will start to see others who aren't of their religion as bad people and this will affect their future attitudes of people who aren't members of their religion. It shapes a child's future because their circle of friends may be limited and a prejudice has been taught.

Friends are a big influence in children's attitudes and beliefs. For most children, preschool is their first experience with school. While at preschool they're exposed to what other children say and believe. They begin to put weight on what their friends say and the things they like and dislike. Children compare the acceptability of beliefs to those of their friends and begin to  compare and contrast similarities and differences of those in their circle of friendship and those out of it.

Children who have contact with people from other generations benefit from these interactions. When visiting grandparents or aunts and uncles it impacts a child's attitude toward other adults. Children who spend time with people from other generations and have direct exposure to older adults have a more positive attitude toward other adults. Activities and time spent with older adults can be seen as boring by children. When they spend time with grandparents or other adults from other generations they see that grandparents and other adults have things in common with them as a child. Children learn adults from other generations like to play some of the same games or like to read some of the same authors they do and it's a great way for children to learn about history.

Parents who promote accepting attitudes and beliefs have children who are more likely to adopt the same attitudes and beliefs. As a result children become more tolerant of  differences and learn to celebrate diversity.