Posts Tagged ‘developmental psychology’

Developmental Psychology 102: Control

It’s been almost a year since my last post. An eventful year for our family. We gained a new home. We lost a father / grandfather. And a thousand other tiny but no less epic events. I will write more about all that soon…

But today we continue our study in Developmental Psychology. Here in Dev Psych 102, we explore the limits of control.

I only have practical experience in raising children below the age of 6. By the time I have hands-on knowledge of each new age and phase, it’s far too late for our two oldest Arnold Girls, in the same way it’s too late to avoid a train once it’s run you over.

So I read a lot, hoping to find wisdom and help for each new stage or phase or seismic shift that’s coming. In the process I’ve found a lot of conversations about control – and not losing it. Controlling attitudes. Control actions. Controlling your emotions. There’s even a behavioral adjustment system you can order that promises to “change your child’s attitude in 30 seconds or less.”

Read More…

 

Developmental Psychology 101

Maya On SwingI have a new funding source for the girls’ college education – college students. I’m looking around the house and realizing that I have an active, functioning Developmental Psychology lab right here under one roof.

When Stacey was in college, one of her assignments was to go to Bellevue Square, watch children playing in the play area and write down observations. This is, of course, an assignment destined for disaster, especially if the student is a male and they happen to record some of their observations on a camera phone. “It’s for a school project” is an explanation likely to get you tackled by burly mall security guards.

But why risk the indignity of being taken down by rent-a-cops? Come on over to Arnold-ville, where you can observe four siblings in their native habitat! You can see a living example of just about every stage in your text book, all with in the space of an hour or two. For extra credit, you can take ’em to a playground or feed them a meal and get even more learnin’ on.

Case in point: Middle Child Syndrome / New Baby Anxiety. Maya is no longer the baby. She’s coping fairly well, but yesterday she was trying out all the baby items in the house – swing, car seat, pacifier. I got it on video (sort of – see below), but seeing it live is oh so much more informative.

Or we could hire a film crew. If the recent documentary “Babies” is any indication, people love to sit in theaters and watch babies for two hours at eleven bucks a pop. Sure babies are cute, but they don’t really do that much. Add two preschoolers and a toddler – now that’s entertainment! Of course, this sort of veers into the whole “Jon & Kate” / “Balloon Boy” opportunism, so maybe we should pull it back a bit, even though in the American psyche nothing says ‘I love my kids” more than a little exploitation (That was sarcasm, people. Cutting edge social commentary smothered in tasty ironic nougat).

Until the UW calls to set up their extension campus here, I will continue to document the developments for science and posterity. Think of me as your Dev. Psych. Jane Goodall, and this blog as “Toddlers in the Mist.” The mist, in this case, is the spray from the kitchen sink faucet one of them has gotten a hold of. Yipe! Gotta go!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKr8TlWew_A