Part IV The School Years: Biosocial Development Chapter Eleven A Healthy Time

Kathleen Stassen Berger
Part IV Chapter Eleven
The School Years: Biosocial Development
A Healthy Time
Brain Development
Children with Special Needs
Prepared by Madeleine Lacefield
Tattoon, M.A.
The School Years: Biosocial Development
• no longer do children depend entirely
on their families to dress, feed and
wash them
• by age 6 or 7, self-care is routine and
attendance at school is mandated
The School Years: Biosocial Development
• there are similarities
among all school-age
children… but also
differences that suddenly
become significant (size,
health, learning ability, in
almost everything)
A Healthy Time
• Middle childhood
– the period between early childhood and
early adolescences, approximately from
age7 to 11
– genetic and environmental factors
safeguard children… most fatal
diseases and accidents occur before
age 7
A Healthy Time
• Size and Shape
– the rate of growth slows down, allowing
school-age children to undertake their basic
– muscles become stronger; school-age children
can master almost any motor skill
– lung capacity expands—children run faster
and exercise longer without breathing more
A Healthy Time
• Size and Shape
– overweight
• in an adult, having a BMI (body mass
index) of 25 to 29
• in a child, being above the 85th
– obesity
• in an adult, having a BMI of 30 or more
• in a child, being above the 95th percentile*
*based on the U.S. Centers for Disease Control’s 1980 standards
for his or her age and sex
A Healthy Time
• Physical Activity
– active play benefits children in every way
– benefits of sports can last a lifetime
better overall health
less obesity
appreciation of cooperation and fair play
improved problem-solving abilities
respect for teammates and opponents from
many ethnicities and nationalities
A Healthy Time
• Physical Activity
– there are also hazards
• loss of self-esteem as a result of criticism from
teammates or coaches
• injuries (the famous “Little League elbow” is one
• reinforcement of prejudices (especially against
the other sex)
• increases in stress (evidenced by altered
hormone levels, insomnia)
• time and effort taken away from learning
academic skills
A Healthy Time
• Neighborhood Games
– neighbor play is flexible
– children improvise to
meet their needs
– play areas, rules,
boundaries, time are
adapted to the children's
A Healthy Time
• Exercise in School
– good gym teachers know
developmentally appropriate,
cooperative games and exercises for
– school have been pressured to increase
academics, while physical education
and recess have declined
A Healthy Time
• Athletic Clubs and Leagues
– private and nonprofit clubs and
organizations offer opportunities for
children to play
– culture and family influence this type of
– most children enjoy organized sports
A Healthy Time
• Chronic Illness
– about 13% of all children have special
health needs, some get worse during
the school years
– any chronic condition can limit active
play and impede regular school
A Healthy Time
• Asthma
– a chronic disease of the respiratory
system in which inflammation narrows
the airway from the lungs to the nose
and mouth, causing difficulty in
breathing. Signs and symptoms include
wheezing, shortness of breath, chest
tightness, and coughing
A Healthy Time
• Prevention of Asthma
– three levels of prevention…
• primary
better ventilation of schools and homes
decreased pollution
eradication of cockroaches
construction of many more play areas
• secondary
– breast-feeding
– ridding the house of dust, pets, smoke and other allergens
– regular checkups
• tertiary
– use of injections and inhalers
– hypoallergenic materials
Brain Development
• Advances in Brain Functioning
– “Increasing myelination results “by 7 or 8
years of age, in a massively interconnected
• reaction time
– the time it takes to respond to a stimulus, either
physically (with a reflexive movement such as an eye
blink) or cognitively (with a thought)
• selective attention
– the ability to concentrate on some stimuli while
ignoring others
• automatization
– a process in which repetition of a sequence of
thoughts and actions makes the sequence routine, so
that it no longer requires conscious thought
Brain Development
• Measuring the Mind
– done via repeated brain scans, such as
the fMRI
– the cortex (the top layers of the brain) is
relatively thin at the beginning of
childhood and then grows thicker during
the school years, reaching a peak at
about age 8
Brain Development
• Aptitude and Achievement
• aptitude
– the potential to master a particular skill or to
learn a particular body of knowledge
• IQ tests
– tests designed to measure intellectual
aptitude, or ability to lean in school.
– intelligence was defined as mental age
divided by chronological age, times 100—
hence the term intelligence quotient, or IQ
Brain Development
• Aptitude and Achievement
Brain Development
• Aptitude and Achievement
– achievement test
• measures of mastery or proficiency in reading,
math, writing, science, or any other subject
– Flynn Effect
• the rise in average IQ scores that has occurred
over the decades in many nations
– Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC)
• an IQ test designed for school-age children. The
test assesses potential in many areas, including
vocabulary, general knowledge, memory, and
spatial comprehension
Brain Development
• Gifted or Retarded
– mental retardation
• Literally, slow, or late, thinking. In
practice, people are considered mentally
retarded if they score below 70 on an IQ
test and if they are markedly behind their
peers in adaptation to daily life.
Brain Development
• Criticisms of IQ Testing
– many developmentalists criticize IQ tests
– no test can measure potential without
also measuring achievement
– every test score reflects the culture of the
people who wrote, administer and take it
– intellectual potential changes over the life
Brain Development
• Criticisms of IQ Testing
– a more fundamental criticism concerns
the very concept that there is one
general thing called intelligence
– humans may have multiple
intelligences… if so, the use one IQ
score is based on a false premise
Brain Development
• Criticisms of IQ Testing
– Sternberg (1996) describes three distinct
types of intelligence
• academic – measured by IQ and achievement
• creative – evidenced by imaginative endeavors
• practical – seen in everyday problem solving
• other intelligences
– emotional intelligence – the ability to regulate one’s
emotions and perceptive understanding of other
people’s feelings
Brain Development
If North American
intelligence tests truly
reflected all aspects of
the mind, children
would be considered
mentally slow if they
could not replicate the
proper hand, arm, torso
and facial positions of a
traditional dance, as this
young Indonesian girl
does brilliantly.
Brain Development
Criticisms of IQ Testing
– The most influential of all theories is
Gardner’s 8 theories:
bodily-kinesthetic (movement)
interpersonal (social understanding)
intrapersonal (self-understanding)
naturalistic (understanding of nature, as in
biology, zoology, or farming)
Children with Special Needs
• children who, because of a physical
or mental disability, require extra help
in order to learn
• often slowness, impulsiveness, or
clumsiness is the first problem to be
noticed; other problems become
apparent once formal education
Developmental Psychopathology
the field that uses insights into
typical development to study and
treat developmental disorders and
vice versa
Developmental Psychopathology
four lessons from developmental
psychopathology apply to everyone:
abnormality is normal
disability changes year by year
adulthood may be better or worse
diagnosis depends on the social context
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental
Disorders (DSM-IV-R)
The American Psychiatric Association’s official guide
to the diagnosis (not treatment) of mental disorders.
(IV means “fourth edition, revised.”)
Attention-Deficit Disorder
• Attentiondeficit/hyperactivity
disorder (ADAH)
– a condition in which a
person not only has great
difficulty concentrating for
more than a few moments
but also is inattentive,
impulsive, and overactive.
– comorbidity
• the presence of two or
more unrelated disease
conditions at the same
time in the same person
Attention-Deficit Disorder
• Learning Disabilities
– a marked delay in a
particular area of leaning
that is not caused by an
apparent physical disability,
by mental retardation, or by
an unusually stressful home
– dyslexia
• unusual difficulty with
reading; thought to be the
result of some
Attention-Deficit Disorder
• Autistic Spectrum Disorders
– autism
• a developmental disorder marked by an inability
to relate to other people normally, extreme selfabsorption, and an inability to acquire normal
– autistics spectrum disorder
• any of several disorders characterized by
inadequate social skills, usually communication,
and abnormal play
– asperger syndrome
• a specific type of autistic spectrum disorder
characterized by extreme attention to details
and deficient social understanding
Educating Children with Special Needs
• Individual education plan (IEP)
– a document that specifies educational
goals and plans for a child with special
• Least restrictive environment (LRE)
– a legal requirement that children with
special needs be assigned to the most
general educational context in which
they can be expected to learn
Educating Children with Special Needs
• Resource room
– a room in which trained
teachers help children with
special needs, using
specialized curricula and
• Inclusion
– An approach to educating
children with special needs in
which they are included in
regular classrooms, with
“appropriate aids and
services,” as required by law