As a young girl, I remember watching many Disney movies. Learning about child development in this section of the class, the movie Tarzan came into my mind. In this movie, a baby boy is left to fend for himself after a leopard in the wild kills his parents. Tarzan, after being orphaned, is found by a mother gorilla. Tarzan quickly begins to integrate with the way of the apes that he lives with. All the while, he is fully aware at all times how different he is from the animals he is in company with. This is due to the fact that he must overcome several challenges to deal with being so different from the animals around him. He must learn to walk, communicate, eat, hunt, and interact with the apes in a particular way. All these things are unnatural for regular humans. However, in order to survive, he adapts quickly and being like an ape is the only way that he knows. By the time Tarzan ever comes into contact with another human being, he has fully integrated with the way of the gorillas around him. He walks on all fours, communicates with the sounds gorillas make, travels by swinging through trees, and overall is animalistic in how he lives. More than overcoming his challenges to adjust, the wild ways of the gorillas has become a part of his nature.
His first encounter with other humans is with a professor and a woman named Jane. Jane is the daughter of the professor who has come to research and study wild animals in the jungle. When they first come across Tarzan, they are puzzled about what type of creature he is. They soon come to realize that he is fully human but with the characteristics of a wild animal. As the professor, Jane, and Tarzan become more acquainted, he is torn between being with his own kind or staying in the wild, the only thing that he has ever known.
Looking at the story of Tarzan, it is apparent how important child development is. Tarzan lives in a way that is unimaginable and impossible for regular human beings that have grown up in...
References: Myers, D. (2011). Exploring psychology . (8 ed.). New York, NY: Worth Publishers.
Operant conditioning vs. classical conditioning . (2000). Retrieved from http://www.dogmanners.com/conditioning.html
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