The articles The Amazing Power of Baby Love and A Year to Cheer (written by Dr.
Stanley Greenspan and Emily Abedon, respectively) advocate intense coexistencebetween the child and the caregiver. These articles (taken from parentingmagazine) are, in essence, guidelines to be used by the parents or caregiver toensure proper development of their child up to the second year. The article alsoeducates the reader that every child develops at their own pace, and there is noexact time table that one can easily look at to see how well their child isdoing. Either way the two articles overly support deep mutual interactionbetween both the child and the caregiver.
Stanley Greenspans The AmazingPower of Baby Love teaches that simple gestures and interactions help babiesdevelop intelligence, language and character. It states that at 2 to 4 months(notice the allowance of time Greenspan gives) the child becomes more involvedwith the caregiver. Notice the correlation between the authors statement andAinsworths Stages of Attachment (p463-465): Birth through 2 months-indiscriminate social responsiveness- “at first, babies do not focus theirattention exclusively on their mothers and will at times respond positively toanyone. ” 2 months through 7 months- discriminate social response- “Duringthe second phase, infants become more interested in the caregiver and the otherfamiliar people and direct their social responses to them. ” From birth toapproximately 2 months the infants is does not really who cares who handlesthem.
Afterwards, from 2 through seven months the child develops into the nextstage. Once the child is in the second stage of Ainsworths theory Greenspaninsinuates that the child is intelligent enough to distinguish differencesbetween people: “your child seems to be more intensely involved with you. Shemay look longingly into your eyes. .
. or wiggle in anticipation when she hears youapproaching. ” By 5 months the child the child should have their own ways ofexpressing affection: -Responding to facial expressions -Initiating interactions-Making sounds or moving in rhythm with motions of your own -Relaxing when beingheld -Cooing when attention is given -Looking at face as if studying it -Lookinguneasy/ sad when you move away The last in the list above relate to stage threeof Ainsworths stage theory, focused attachment. The child suffers fromseparation anxiety, or fear that the caregiver will leave and never return. Thisaction can relate to Piagets thoughts of object permanence, because the childfears or believes that once an object is out of sight it is gone for good.
Bydefinition: Object Permanence- The knowledge that objects have a permanentexistence that is independent of our perceptual contact with them. In Piagetstheory object permanence is a major achievement of the sensorimotor period. Greenspan then begins to talk about the beginning of communication. He statesthat children really do have a comprehension of language before they say theirfirst words. Gestures instead take place of verbal communication. At firstgestures are purposeful for requests and referential communication, later forfunctioning as symbols to label objects, events and characteristics.
When thecaregiver responds to the child the following interaction supposedly helps boostthe childs self esteem. More importantly, the child learns about othersmoods, and in turn learn the ability to react to them. By responding to a babythey learn that their actions have an observable impact on their environment. Two-way conversations also make the child more empathetic.
Once they see thatthey have an impact on the caregiver they see that person as an individual, someone separate from themselves. In the end Greenspan emphasizes again thatchildren develop at their own pace. On top of that, they have their own responseto a stimulus. Just because the react a way that a caregiver was expecting doesnot necessarily mean that there is anything wrong.
When interacting with a childone should study how the child reacts, and then do what the child seemed toenjoy to “bring the most pleasure,” that should not be too obvious. FinallyGreenspan suggests the following: -Talk in babble, using high to low pitches-Use a variety of faces while babbling -Massage the baby, telling them what yourdoing -Move the babies arms and legs while talking and looking at them -Do notexhaust the baby, stop when signs of fatigue/overstimulation arise EmilyAbedons A Year to Cheer discusses the development of a child from 12 through24 months. The most important thing again is that Abedon emphasizes childrendevelop at their own pace, and parents should not keep checking to see if theirchild is “lagging behind. ” She gives the example of the two 15 month oldwhere one is running and the other can just barely walk. Both of thesesituations are “perfectly normal. ” Parents really are not to blame for therechild development.
The ability to walk is a combination of many differentaspects; from muscle tone, coordination, the ability to stand independently, andin general, the need/want to walk. All of these have to develop before the childcan walk. These physiological necessities grow at independently of one another,including the brain. The rest of the essay is a list of the basic breakthroughsa caregiver can expect to see for 12 to 24 months. The first thing Abedon bringsup is about language. At the first year the child generally knows one or twowords, but the important part is they understand dozens more.
For example, ifyou ask a child for their teddy bear they will be able to give it to you, eventhough they do not say the words. As the year goes on the child starts making”protowords”, words that link sound and meaning. The textbook states thateven though this is a pretty significant parents really do not take too muchconsideration to these “word” (p. 408. ) Abedon then goes on to talk aboutthe naming explosion.
Typically this occurs between 18 through 21 months of age. In this period the child goes from knowing a few words to identifyingpractically everything. In some cases the child may learn 50 words a week. At 24months the child usually speak short sentences, speak politely, and know up 350words. The babies first words are generally items of everyday use and necessity. Some scientists seem to believe that the emergence of the naming explosion isbecause of the childs new ability of categorize objects.
Although Abedonreally does not talk about the physical aspects of development she does talkabout the dangers of this period: “not only will your child be capable of moresophisticated and dangerous feats, hell also be much more likely to pursuethem (p210). ” This period is also a transition from babies imitating others tolearning and expecting things from them. They also have the ability to react toothers emotions, “most can understand a wide variety of facial expressionsand gestures. ” Another example of this is the one mother acting sad just toget a hug from her son. As they continue growing they become more explorative,relating cause to effect and generally becoming “little scientists.
” Finallythe author sets a limit on what would be in the range of normal development. Bythe second birthday the child should not show any of the following symptoms (ifthey are present a pediatrician should be seen): Physical- Cannot walkunassisted, push a wheeled toy, or kick a ball. Cognitive- Does not followsimple instructions or imitate simple behaviors, and cannot stack at least 4blocks. Linguistic- Does not speak 2 word sentences, speaks fewer than 50 words.
Social- Unresponsive to stimulation to people/playthings. Does not play gameslike peekabo or pat-a-cake. Generally speaking these two articles are very basicin their techniques and explanations. They emphasize intense interaction toenforce the babys development, but caution overstimulating the baby. Also,and probably the most important thing that is to be learned from these articles,children develop differently and at their own pace. Just because one baby iswalking and the other is crawling does not mean the one crawling is abnormal,its just taking its time.
Note: These articles are not the best to write on,but they are the only two that had some sort of information that were on thesame subject.