infant and toddler observation

Topics: Erikson's stages of psychosocial development, Developmental psychology, Mother Pages: 5 (1761 words) Published: November 16, 2013
Infant: Development of Trust
My first subject is Ana, my neighbor who is 6 months old. Her father is African-American and her mother is Asian. It has been very interesting to see the cultural differences we have. Tyler, the father was born and raised in the United States. Marcie, the mother, was raised in the Philippines and has only been in the states about 5 years. I have been amazed at the accuracy of the book in relations to the socio cultural theory. Although, Tyler was raised in the U.S. his opinions in child rearing are very much in line with the descriptions portrayed in the African society. The same with Marcie, although I would have expected more of this from her since she was actually raised in the Asian culture.

FACT 1) Ana is sitting in the center of the room on a blanket while her parents watch a movie. Tyler is very attentive to the movie and smiled and talked to the baby off and on while Marcie spends the majority of the time attending to the baby.

INTERPRETATION 1) Marcie is building trust with Ana. She is very responsive to her needs and shows a lot of affection and attention. Tyler was also building trust in a different way. He was showing love and affection also, yet it was easier for him to allow her to be able to entertain and stimulate herself. I thought the balance of the two was quite complimentary. Marcie assures Ana that she is safe and secure, while Tyler allows her to build a sense of trust with herself as well as her parents.

FACT 2) Ana can sit up pretty well on her own, but often loses her balance and tips over. At one point the baby leans toward a toy and begins to tip sideways. Marcie reacts by hollering at Tyler to catch her. Tyler calmly moves toward her as she falls on her side. As Ana looks up at her father she smiles and kicks her feet excitedly but when she looks at her mother who is obviously anxious, her bottom lip begins to pout and the tears begin to flow.

INTERPRETATION 2) While I know Marcie's intentions were good she seemed a little over protective of Ana. On the other hand, Tyler was protective, yet he seemed to be able to let Ana be more independent. He knew the carpet was soft and that there was no real threat of serious injury and acted appropriately. The first problem I see is the mixed signals sent to the child from her parents. Ana seemed confused. She did not get hurt or feel pain when she fell, yet when she saw her mother's reactions she began to cry. I think she cried because her mother sent a signal to her that made her think that was what she was supposed to do. This could possibly develop in to a problem for Ana. She will not always be able to react with genuine feeling. She will become an object of operant conditioning. When she sees her mother look anxious she may automatically cry. This will make it difficult in the future for an adult to tell if she is really hurt and needs attention or if she is just acting like she had been conditioned to.

FACT 3) As Ana began to get tired, she began to get fussy. By now, we were all well in-grossed in the movie. It was interesting to see who was the most willing to give up watching the movie to take care of the fussing baby. It was Marcie. At first they passed Ana back and forth but when it finally came down to it, Marcie left the family room and took care of things. She changed the diaper, prepared the bottle and fed the baby. She then danced and paced the floor until Ana fell asleep.

INTERPRETATION 3) This is where the best indication of Trust vs. Mistrust came in. I am not insinuating that Ana does not have a trusting relationship with her father, however, the trust-relationship with the mother was much more evident at this point. Perhaps, it was a combination of several factors. I think that the "trust" between Mother and Father played a role. Tyler knew Marcie would step into action. He trusted her ability to handle things. If she had not been there I feel certain that he would have handled things...
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