Human Lifespan and Development: The Nature of Children

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Human Lifespan and Development: The Nature of Children

Human Lifespan and Development: The Nature of Children
Philosophical ideas about the development of children arose from old ideas about human nature and history. Many of the philosophers who proposed philosophical ideas about childhood development are considered either nativists or maturationists. The view of nativists is that behavior is innate and is strongly affected by the genes. Maturationists also believe that genes influence behavior, but the behavior grows to maturity because it is under the control of genes. This paper intends to define, as well as, discuss two different philosophical views, which, historically, have been held regarding the nature of psychological development of children. It will then provide a section that compares those historical views with the current conception about the development in children. A conclusion will sum up the discussion. One philosophical view about the development of children was proposed by Stanley Hall (1844-1924). In addition to contributing to philosophical views about childhood development, Hall is the founder of the American Psychological Association and was the first Ph. D. in Psychology. He came up with his view using the questionnaire method, which involved asking people about their lives. Darwin influenced him through the principle that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny in which ontogeny means an individual’s development while phylogeny means the evolution of species. In that regard, Hall proposed the following developmental stages. The first is infancy (0-4 years), which he named the animal phase because the child demonstrates behaviors that are closely related to those of animals courtesy of having a blank mind. He referred to the second stage (Age 4-8 years) as the hunting and fishing cultures. The third stage (age 8-12 years) is the savage and primitive (or tribal) human cultures. The fourth stage (age 12-25 years) is the eighteenth century...
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