Life-span development chap. notes

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Life-Span Perspective


Historical - view of children and child development has changed throughout history

1. Aries used samples of art to conclude life development consisted of only two phases:

* Infancy and adulthood

* Results biased toward only studying European Aristocrats

2. Egyptians, Grecians and Romans held rich conceptions of children's development

3. Three Philosophical Views

* Original Sin (Middle Ages) - children are inherently evil and societal constraints and salvation are necessary for children to become mature adults

* Tabula rasa (17th Century/John Locke) - child is a blank tablet upon which experience writes

* Innate Goodness (18th Century/Jean Rousseau) - children are basically good and should be allowed to grow naturally, without constraints from parents or society

4. Childhood currently viewed as unique period of life that creates the foundation for adult years

* special time of growth and change

* resources invested in caring for and educating our children

Child Labor Laws

Juvenile Justice

Governmental provisions for helping families in need of social welfare

5. Research does not support G. Stanley Hall's view - adolescence period of "storm and stress"

* 1988 Cross Cultural - most adolescents have positive self-images

* Characterized as competent, happy, enjoying life, confident in sexuality and ability to cope effectively with stress

6. Adolescence - developmental period that is characterized by physical, social and legal identity


Industrial revolution, child labor laws, juvenile justice and compulsory education laws

7. Developmental changes occur throughout adulthood

* increasing average life expectancies - study of aging

* elimination of mandatory retirement requirements - value on contributions of elderly


Characteristics of Life-Span development

1. Life-long

2. Multi-dimensional - Biological, Cognitive and Social

3. Multi-directional -...
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