o Nature and nurture - Nature: unique gene combination (Synonyms: hereditary, genetic, inherited, and innate.) - Nurture: experiences (Synonyms: environment, learned, socialized, and educated) Development is formed by the interaction of nature and nurture! o Continuity and stages Development can be seen in two ways. - Continuity: continuous, as in learning, where development is a slow, continuous process (left). - Stages: steps, as predisposed genetically (right). o Stability and changes Research argues that we experience both stability and change . For example, temperament and attitude are stable across the life span. Conception o Conception: occurs when a woman’s ovary releases a mature egg and one of million sperm cells penetrates its wall. Series of chemical events begin that cause sperm and egg to fuse into singe cell. o Prenatal development - Zygote (conception to 2 weeks): rapid cell division - Embryo (2 weeks through 8 weeks): attachment to uterus, heart beat begins, cell differentiation begins, recognizable body parts appear, major body systems form. - Fetus (9 weeks to 40 weeks): body systems mature. o Stages of prenatal development - Embryonic stage: In three weeks, primitive neural tube of stem cells has formed. Neural stem cells divide and multiple eventually producing neurons and glial cells. Then, top of neural tube gradually thickens into three bulges that develop into the three main brain regions. - Month 4: quickening occurs and hearing begins. - Month 6: brain cells are in place and growing size and complexity. - Month 6-9: rapid brain and body growth, development, nerve insulation. o Risks related to prenatal developmental - Teratogens : harmful substances such as viruses (e.g. HIV) and drugs (e.g. cocaine) that slip through and cause abnormal developmental or birth defects. The greatest risk is during first 12 weeks of pregnancy. - Fetal alcohol syndrome : physical and cognitive abnormalities in children causes by pregnant woman’s heavy drinking. In severe cases, a fetus has a small, out-of-proportion head and abnormal facial features. Newborn and newborn competencies o Reflexes (eventually lost) - The rooting reflex : elicited by stimulation to the corners of the mouth, which causes infants to orient themselves toward the stimulation and make sucking motions. This helps the infant begin feeding immediately after birth. - The Moro reflex : occurs when infants lose support of their head. Infants grimace and reach their arms outward and then inward in a hugging motion. This may be a protective reflex that allows the infant to hold on to the mother when support is suddenly lost. - The grasping reflex : elicited by stimulating the infant’s palm. This is remarkably strong and facilitates safely holding on to one’s caregiver. o Physical o Visual 14
Research shows that newborns prefer and attend to these stimuli in their environment: angles, circles and bulls-eyes, contrasts (especially black and while), and primary colors.
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- Spring '14